Yesterday I just had to post Drew Carey’s emotional reminiscence about being “called over to the couch” after his first stand up gig on The Tonight Show.
Honest comics will tell you that getting waved over to join Johnny and Ed at the desk was THE most important event in their lives: bigger than getting married, having kids, anything.
Someone like Freddie Prinze literally woke up the next morning with a development deal, like his for Chico and the Man.
Overnight, you went from feature act to headliner and could double or triple your asking price for comedy club gigs.
For fellow Boston comics, Steven Wright’s first appearance on The Tonight Show was such a watershed moment for “the scene” that at one club (the Ding Ho?), they stuck a TV on stage that night so everyone could watch him.
Wright was such a hit that Johnny brought him back on the show a week later.