It’s like he never left! David Letterman was welcomed to Jimmy Kimmel Live with a standing ovation on Tuesday, October 17, making his first late-night TV appearance since he retired in May 2015.
“I’m so excited to be here. It’s so good to see famous people again,” Letterman, 70, told the crowd as he sat down with host Jimmy Kimmel in his Brooklyn studio. “Just to be out out of the house, ladies and gentlemen!”
He then turned his attention to Paul Shaffer, who used to lead the band on The Late Show before heading over to JKL, calling him out. “Paul, you didn’t tell me you work here now. When the heck did that happen, for God’s sake?”
The jokes continued through the entire 16-minute interview, including when Kimmel asked if he missed late-night TV. He said no, before deciding, “I miss wearing makeup!”
These days though, he actually refers to himself as “an entirely different person” than he used to be.
“The great struggle in life is to be better each and every day,” Letterman explained. “If you take a look around, the horizon of humanity … my God. Is there anything we can do, big or small, to make the life of just one person a little bit better? And that’s no small accomplishment.”
The former host spent 33 years on TV — but he revealed he hasn’t watched one moment of himself on television. “I’m not going to watch this show tonight,” he said. “Not because of you, because of me.”
However, he does read what people say about his gigantic beard. “I look like a Civil War statue,” he joked.
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