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Late Night TV Change To Believe In?

A review of George Lopez’s new TBS late-night show:

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) – TBS made TV history on Monday with the premiere of “Lopez Tonight,” a late-night talkfest with a Chicano host. And just in case you didn’t realize it, George Lopez hit you over the head with that information roughly every 90 seconds.

The new nightly show recognizes the changing demos of the U.S. population, a point Lopez punctuated with opening night guests Eva Longoria Parker, NBA star Kobe Bryant and music legend Carlos Santana (along with a near-cameo appearance by Ellen DeGeneres in bed clothes).

Ethnicity is the be all and end all in most of Lopez’s standup material — and the bulk of Monday night’s opening monologue — but it threatens to choke the life out of his talk show. It’s one thing to have a diverse guest list and quite another to hail every guest appearance as a testimonial to the concept.

“This is what America looks like,” he proclaimed, vowing he will be “making late night different and bringing change to late night TV.” While the goal in itself is commendable, for the show to succeed it will need to do more than proclaim itself a Rainbow Coalition.

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