Tom Shales At Large

Tom Shales At Large

Leno, late night & me

(AP photo) Jay Leno and I go way back. One of my fondest memories is of Jay chasing me around the parking lot of the Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles. I always tell people that I thought of the Bel-Air,…

Tom Shales At Large

Kind of like 'Top Chef,' but with holy smoke

Aye, it's the age-old story. Oh the naming of a new pope, sure, but there's another less-age-old story: TV networks covering something that their anchors and reporters call a glorious spectacle and then ruining the spectacle with superfluous graphics littering…

Tom Shales At Large

The Oscars: Captain Kirk was right

(AP photo) Listen -- a billion people are throwing up. That's a rough estimate of course, but every year somebody at the Oscars says a billion people on the planet are watching the program; however many watched this year's Oscar…

Tom Shales At Large

The rousing return of Robin Roberts

(ABC photo) Roughly five months ago, back in the summer of '12, the spectacularly popular Robin Roberts, co-anchor of ABC's "Good Morning, America," left the show for a sabbatical of indeterminate length. She might be gone for six or eight…

Tom Shales At Large

This one's a keeper

(AP photo) Back in ancient days of rampant ignorance and sexist effrontery, a TV commercial for a product now forgotten depicted a happy married couple whose cheer seemed guaranteed by the woman's subservience to the man. At the end of…