We were all set to take this week’s Top Five in a different direction until we came across the clips of Jim Parsons’ appearance this past Monday on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.”
After we watched him, we decided this appearance would rise to the top of our Top Five for a number of reasons. One is that Parsons is the star of TV’s top comedy, “The Big Bang Theory,” which means he rates consideration for our list when he appears on a late-night show. In addition, we’ve been fascinated with this actor ever since we saw him last summer here in New York, in the lead role of a play, “Harvey,” and he was amazing.
But the best reason for featuring this interview here is because it was one of those rare celebrity interviews — rare for a late-night show like Leno’s anyway — in which we actually learned something about an interview subject who we were interested in. Read on and we’ll explain:
1) Jim Parsons on “The Tonight Show”: It wasn’t some sort of deep, tell-all interview, but we were surprised to hear about Parsons’ Texas roots and his avid affection for football (the Houston Texans), even going so far as to participate in fantasy football (isn’t that just like a “Big Bang” nerd?). Parsons, 39, also talked about “Big Bang,” and what the show has meant to him after five-and-a-half seasons. (This week, it meant 17.147 million viewers Thursday night — a huge number by today’s prime-time standards.)
2) High-rated, but not highest-rated: That distinction — at least among scripted prime-time shows — goes to “NCIS,” also on CBS. Why mention that here? Because the ratings for “NCIS” this past Tuesday — 19.76 million, which will likely top all others by the time the week is over — give us an excuse to remind everybody that we happen to have TV’s highest-rated drama available to watch.
3) Another “DWTS” dances into the history books: Melissa Rycroft this past Tuesday was crowned the winner of this fall’s “All-Stars” edition of “Dancing With the Stars.” And so, the curtain falls on another “DWTS.” For the record, this “Results” show drew 16.73 million Tuesday night on ABC.
4) Another sign we’ve hit the midseason: When a reality show like “DWTS” cycles to its conclusion, it usually signals we’ve reached the midseason point. December will now be filled up mainly with repeats and specials, with new shows, and some returning series, arriving in January. NBC’s freshman end-of-the-world action serial “Revolution” ended its first half-season this past Monday with a cliffhanger, as our family of heroes stood there looking down (or, to be accurate, up) the barrel of a machine gun mounted on a helicopter. Will they be mowed down as soon as the season picks up again (which may not be ’til March)? Somehow, we doubt they’ll all get wiped out because then you’d have no show.
5) It’s another Christmas season, Charlie Brown: We had barely finished our Thanksgiving leftovers when the first telecast of “A Charlie Brown Christmas” turned up this past Wednesday on ABC, drawing 8.85 million viewers, which isn’t bad for a show that’s been on TV every year since 1965. And thanks to new technology, you don’t even have to wait for ABC to air it again. You can watch it anytime, on this site.