James Corden is leaving the late-night talk show lineup next year. On Thursday (April 28), the host of CBS’s The Late Late Show said he’s enjoyed the journey, but never intended the program to be his “final destination.”
When the Corden news hit the trades, comedian and actress Cristela Alonzo jokingly tweeted that she was interested in the job.
“Fine. I’ll take over James Corden,” she wrote. “Someone send me the job application.”
But, why not? Alonzo would be an amazing choice for the high-profile gig and it would be another step forward in increasing diversity and sustaining talent on the ever-expanding TV landscape.
Whenever a late-night talk show host calls it quits, it’s always major news because openings for the more established programs like The Tonight Show or The Daily Show don’t come around too often. Corden will leave after eight years. Before him, Craig Ferguson went nine.
If the TV industry follows history, the new host will be another white male. We already have Jimmy Kimmel, Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, Seth Meyers, John Oliver, Bill Maher, and Jon Stewart. That’s not even counting the countless white men who came before them like David Letterman, Jay Leno, and Conan O’Brien. Go farther back, and you’ll find the same thing.
Yes, there are instances when a white, male host wasn’t hired for the job. The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, Desus & Mero, and The Amber Ruffin Show are a few current examples. Then there was Lopez Tonight, which ran less than two years with comedian George Lopez as host.
The bottom line is that minorities and women haven’t been given enough of a chance to succeed on the late-night platform. Therefore, CBS should break some new ground and offer The Late Late Show to Alonzo.
Don’t know Alonzo? She is a Mexican-American who has built her career as a stand-up comedian. She starred in her own sitcom, Cristela, before ABC unceremoniously canceled it. She’s been in movies and TV shows, written a memoir, and hosts podcasts and game shows. She’s well-liked, funny, clever, and, most importantly, would likely only sing Selena songs during Carpool Karaoke.