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Jimmy Fallon introduces The Beatles to social media (and selfie Sunday!) -- VIDEO

There are two things we know for sure in this world: We’re in the golden age of social media, and Beatlemania was the height of rabid fandom. So can you imagine if John, Paul, Ringo, and George had participated in #selfiesunday?!

Jimmy Fallon can. On The Tonight Show, Fallon recruited Late Night bandleader Fred Armisen to help him show what 1964 would’ve looked like if Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and even Vine had existed.

In his sketch, we travel back to the band’s first performance on The Ed Sullivan Show, just after they finish singing “I Want to Hold Your Hand.” Paul immediately thanks the crowd… and asks everyone to like the band on Facebook. If you want to see more of their bowl cuts, they’re also on Instagram — THE_BEATLES1 — but you’ll have to ignore all the photos of Ringo’s brunch. (Ringo jokes: still funny!) More importantly, be sure to catch their live-tweet of the MTV Video Music Awards.

The best part of all of this? The band’s Twitter handle: @THEREALBEATLESUK. If this is 1964, what jerk stole @TheBeatles?!

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'Late Night With Seth Meyers' premieres tonight: 5 things we want to see

Each iteration of The Tonight Show‘s mischievous younger brother has had its own unique flavor. David Letterman’s pioneering version was cutting-edge and unpredictable; Conan O’Brien’s was cerebral and absurd; Jimmy Fallon’s was goofy and YouTubey, and “wait, you remember the ’90s TOO?!”-y.

Late Night‘s latest host, ex-SNL head writer Seth Meyers, will obviously try to forge his own path. That said, he also has a few things in common with each of his predecessors — and it’s easy to see a scenario in which he synthesizes the strengths of all three previous hosts (Letterman’s innovation, Conan’s surreality, Fallon’s knack for viral content) to create some sort of ultimate Late Night Frankenshow.

Something like that, of course, would only come with time. For now, let’s focus on what we’d like to see from Meyers’ very first Late Night, which airs tonight on NBC at 12:35 a.m. ET. First and foremost: READ FULL STORY

Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake bring 'History of Rap 5' to 'Tonight Show'

The setting might have been new, but the beats were strictly old-school when Justin Timberlake dropped by pal Jimmy Fallon’s new home at The Tonight Show to team up for the latest installment of “The History of Rap.” That would be Chapter No. 5 for those of you scoring at home.

From NWA to the Beastie Boys up through Jay Z and Kanye West, Timberlake and Fallon dropped the proverbial science on an audience that’s seen Jay Leno’s successor pull out all the stops in his first week as the new host of NBC’s long-running late-night institution. The bit came a couple of nights after Fallon partnered up with guest Will Smith for “The Evolution of Hip Hop Dancing” and his inspired edit of Brian Williams’ stentorian “Rapper’s Delight.”

Check it out and weigh in on whether the bit is getting tired or still hilarious…

Last night on 'Tonight': Enter Rapping Brian Williams and #MartinScorsese -- VIDEO

Again with the viral videos, Jimmy Fallon!

Tonight‘s new host continues to pull out all the stops during his first week on the job. Night No. 1 brought a parade of cameos from celebrities, including Tina Fey, Lady Gaga, Mike Tyson, Stephen Colbert, and, perhaps most notably, Joan Rivers — making her first Tonight appearance since Johnny Carson banned her from the program in the ’80s. (He was furious at his guest host for getting her own talk show on Fox.) Night No. 2 welcomed the return of Fallon’s Ragtime Gals barbershop quartet (singing the remix of “Ignition,” naturally), as well as a boy-band member who looked an awful lot like Kristen Wiig.

Night No. 3 followed suit, presenting a pair of videos sure to blow up on YouTube. First up, we’ve got the sequel to Fallon and Justin Timberlake’s immortal “#Hashtag,” this time starring Jonah Hill as Jimmy’s partner in Twitter speak. #Funny #NostalgiaBait #GuessWhoShowsUpIt’sMartinScorsese #SpoilerAlert #Oops.

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Jimmy Fallon sings a capella version of 'Ignition (Remix)' -- VIDEO

Jimmy Fallon performed R. Kelly’s classic “Ignition (Remix)” last night, barbershop quartet-style. Three guys joined the new Tonight Show host on stage, all wearing matching striped jackets and bow-ties, to sing the 2003 hit. Who knew a remix of a remix could be so good? Watch the clip below: READ FULL STORY

'Harry Styles' -- a.k.a. Kristen Wiig -- stops by 'The Tonight Show': VIDEO

This must be why they call her Kristen Wiig.

On Tuesday, the Bridesmaids star strapped on some truly gravity-defying hair for her first appearance on Jimmy Fallon’s second Tonight Show. But Wiig wasn’t there to plug a new project (though her mock-miniseries The Spoils of Babylon recently wrapped up on IFC, and she’s got several movies in the works) — she was there to impersonate 20-year-old One Direction heartthrob and possible Kardashian family accessory Harry Styles.

Well, maybe “impersonate” isn’t exactly the right word. Wiig is a talented mimic — but she didn’t bother trying to ape Harry’s voice or mannerisms on Tonight. Instead, the whole joke of the segment was that Wiig doesn’t know the most basic things about  Styles, from how his boy band formed to the simple fact that he’s, uh, from England. It’s a fun, loose bit that inevitably leads to both Wiig and Fallon cracking up like they’ve forgotten they’re on television — but if you’re already a fan of either, you’ll probably cracking along with them. Especially when Wiig takes a stab at naming Harry’s favorite food.

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'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon' premiere review: No one is more excited than Jimmy

Everything had to go wrong for Jimmy Fallon to get The Tonight Show. NBC had to choose Leno over Letterman, and then choose Leno again over O’Brien: A pair of historic injustices, if you’re the kind of person who treats millionaire-white-dude desk-swapping like generation-defining culture-quakes. There’s a school of thinking that Letterman and O’Brien “deserved” The Tonight Show — not to mention two decades of jokes about how Leno didn’t deserve it. But deserve’s got nothing to do with it. The Tonight Show is a powerful concept — a way to talk about Hollywood or America or Comedy or Whatever Matters Now — but it’s also a straightforward piece of old-fashioned showbiz, a variety show airing five times a week on a network that needs to make money.

Letterman and O’Brien always had a perspective on the late-night franchise that was simultaneously admirable and totally weird: They seemed to buy in completely to the grand idea of The Tonight Show, but also want more than anything to stamp themselves completely onto that grand idea. As related in Bill Carter’s The War for Late Night, O’Brien could have actually kept The Tonight Show but refused to move it back to midnight. Four years later, it’s hard to tell whether that exit was a brave blow struck in the eternal battle of Individual against Machine, or a defining moment in the history of Taking Things Too Seriously. READ FULL STORY

With 'The Tonight Show' looming, one last look at Jimmy Fallon's best 'Late Night' music bits

Tonight, Jimmy Fallon officially launches the next wave for The Tonight Show when he kicks off his reign as host. (Fallon shared his own excitement about taking over the late night institution with fans on Instagram.) Though he has been saying for months that his version of The Tonight Show won’t waver very much from the format established by Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, we won’t know whether or not that is true until after the credits roll on this evening’s premiere (and really, we won’t truly know until Fallon settles into a groove a few months from now).

His first week is packed with huge stars. Will Smith and U2 appear on tonight’s show, with Jerry Seinfeld, Kristen Wiig, and Lady Gaga handling guest duties on Tuesday. Wednesday includes Bradley Cooper and Tim McGraw, while Thursday’s show welcomes Michelle Obama, Will Ferrell, and Arcade Fire. Longtime Fallon friend and collaborator Justin Timberlake will be the sole visitor on Friday.

But there’s at least one thing we can take for granted going into tonight’s kick off, which airs at midnight to accomodate NBC’s ongoing coverage of the Olympics. No matter what bits, characters, and themes make the shift from Late Night to Tonight, the Roots will continue to serve as Fallon’s musical accompaniment and secret weapon. When the hip-hop collective took the job back in 2008, it seemed like a step down for a group who had already won a Grammy and scored a couple of gold records along the way. But now, they’re as big a cultural institution as they’ve ever been, and much of Fallon’s success has been fueled by The Roots’ ability to act as a savvy improv troupe and roll with the host’s musical whims.

In fact, most every one of the best moments from Late Night With Jimmy Fallon are music-related. In honor of the five years Fallon ruled the after-hours slot, here are five highlights of his run.  READ FULL STORY

Jimmy Fallon: More than Jay or Dave, he could be a new Johnny Carson

Tonight, when Jimmy Fallon takes over The Tonight Show, it may sound woefully out-of-date to suggest that he in any way wants to be, or should be, or is going to be “the new Johnny Carson.” The very phrase reeks of Vegas mothballs. Over the last two decades, starting with the moment when Jay Leno launched his Attack Of The Nice Guy blandified makeover, The Tonight Show has effectively been de-Johnny-fied, and Fallon, who is 24 years younger than Leno (and would be 49 years younger than Carson if Carson were still alive), represents a brand new generation — or maybe I should say a new-brand generation — in the dominance of late night. The amazing freshness of Fallon’s appeal is that he’s looking forward, not back. READ FULL STORY

'The Tonight Show' without Jay Leno: Like the man said, it's time to go

Jay Leno said goodbye to The Tonight Show for the second time in his career on Thursday. Gone for good? So he joked. “I don’t need to be fired three times! I get the hint!” And so he wept, during his most personal — and arguably best — moment of his 22-year run as the custodian of the hallowed late night institution. “It really is time for me to go and hand it off to the next guy.” His last hour was a pretty good one, highlighted by the pure-pop moment of Billy Crystal bringing out a bunch of stars — Jack Black, Jim Parsons, Carol Burnett, Oprah Winfrey — for a snarky-funny ribbing of NBC for wanting Leno gone, or as the comedian put it earlier this week, in his sarcastic, self-serving way, “dead.” But those minutes, with Leno breaking down at his desk, were undeniably powerful. “This is tricky,” he said as he recalled how he lost his mother, father, and brother during the first three years of hosting The Tonight Show, and how the show and his work filled the void of a man suddenly without family, save for his wife of 34 years, Mavis. “This has been the greatest 22 years of life.”

It was a powerful exit for a man who loved his job and loves to work, perhaps too much, and who served his network faithfully if not always well, and vice versa. As affecting as Leno’s last bow might have been, the episodes that preceded the finale this past week represented a convincing argument that NBC needs a new suit sitting behind the desk, and a whole new creative sensibility in general.
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