White males dominate TV stand-up
So says survey of US talk shows
Stand-ups on American TV are overwhelmingly white men, a new survey has revealed.
Almost 80 per cent of stand-up performances on the late-night talk shows – still seen as a benchmark for the live comedy industry – were from while men in the first six months of the year.
Sean McCarthy of The Comics’ Comic blog counted up all 48 monologues to air on network TV – and found just two women (just over four per cent of the total) and just nine non-white men.
Erin Foley, pictured and Wendy Liebman were the only two female comics to make it to air, on Conan and Jimmy Fallon respectively. No women appeared on David Letterman or Craig Ferguson’s show, although they booked 17 comics between them.
And he found that cable TV was little better, especially when it came to women. Of John Oliver's New York Stand-Up Show on Comedy Central, just two of the 24 performers were women.
On his blog, McCarthy suggested the booking may only be reflecting the live circuit, but added: ‘Does it have to be this way? If you were booking the stand-up comedy segment for a late-night TV talk show, what would be your criteria? Would you worry about diversity… or would you just put any funny person you saw on the show?'
Similar questions have previously been asked of British TV shows such as Mock The Week – 90 per cent of whose panelists have been male over the years.
Posted: 26 Jul 2012