You know when you’re trying to relive David Letterman’s turn as a Taco Bell employee or rewatch all of Robin Williams’ insane Late Show appearances, but you can only find grainy VHS rips of the segments? Letterman is here to smoothen your trips down the YouTube rabbit hole. To coincide with the 40th anniversary of Late Night with David Letterman’s premiere on NBC, the legendary comedian launched an official YouTube channel full of HD clips of his finest moments on NBC’s Late Night and CBS’ Late Show.
Letterman’s YouTube page currently has about 125 videos split up into “Letterman Originals,” “Dave’s Best Celebrity Interviews,” “Stupid Pet and Human Tricks,” “Top Ten,” “Comedians,” and “Human Interest Guests” playlists.
Among the uploads, highlights include Martin Short’s brigade of compliments to the host, Drew Barrymore’s birthday gift to Dave, and Fabio’s Top Ten Pick-Up Lines. It’s a good selection, but here’s hoping he gets around to uploading musical performances soon — for posterity’s sake, we need clear documentation of Sonic Youth’s hilariously out-of-place 1992 performance of “100%.”
It’s always nice to have strong archives of pop culture’s aging icons, and perusing Letterman’s channel quickly reminds us of how many legends we’ve lost recently. Take a moment to log off Twitter and revisit Norm Macdonald’s final standup performance, Alex Trebek’s “Top Ten Rejected ‘Jeopardy’ Categories,” and the time Letterman took drive-thru orders at Taco Bell below. Who knew the Internet could still occasionally evoke joy and not soul-crushing, existential dread?
Since signing off of the Late Show and growing out his beard in 2015, Letterman has taken to Netflix, where he hosts the talk show My Next Guest Needs No Introduction. Its third season premiered in 2020.