Late-night talk shows are back
Jan 03,2008 00:00 by UPI
NEW YORK -- U.S. late-night TV hosts David Letterman, Jay Leno and Conan O'Brien, off the air since November, keyed jokes on the writers' strike that kept them off the air.

"Late Show with David Letterman" was the first late-night TV show to go back on the air with its writers, thanks to an independent deal made between the striking Writers Guild of America and Letterman's Worldwide Pants production company.

The WGA has been on strike against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers since Nov. 5.

During his monologue Wednesday, Letterman reminded the audience: "You're watching the 'Late Show,' the only show on the air now that has jokes written by union writers. I know you're thinking to yourselves at home right now, 'This crap is written?' Yes."

U.S. Republican presidential contender Mike Huckabee was the first guest on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" when the show returned to the air Wednesday night.

Leno received a standing ovation when he took the stage Wednesday.

"A Jew, a Christian and a Muslim walk into a bar. The Jew says to the Muslim ... See, I have no idea what they say because there is a writers' strike going on," he said, kicking off the show.

O'Brien said the strike has been tough on everyone.

"Good people right now are out of work. And possibly worse, with all the late-night shows off the air, Americans have been forced to read books and occasionally even speak to one another, which has been horrifying," O'Brien quipped during opening remarks of the "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" show taped Wednesday.

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