Hey Jay Leno: the ’90s want their jokes back!
According to a study from the Center for Media Affairs at George Mason University, the outgoing host of The Tonight Show relied heavily on yuks about Bill Clinton while delivering his monologue over the last two decades. In fact, one out of every 10 political jokes was about the 42nd President.
The center’s study covered 43,892 jokes about public figures and public affairs that were told by Leno between 1992 and 2014. “Leno’s monologues focused on power and scandal, and Bill Clinton was the top two-fer,” said Prof. Robert Lichter of the CMPA.
All told, Leno made 4,601 Clinton jokes. Democrats, as a whole, were the target of 10,885 yuks – 15% more than the 9,465 jokes that were lobbed against the GOP.
Here were his top 10 political targets:
1. Bill Clinton (4,607)
2. George Bush (3,239)
3. Al Gore (1,026)
4. Barack Obama (1,011)
5. Hillary Clinton (939)
6. Dick Cheney (673)
7. Monica Lewinsky (454)
8. Bob Dole (452)
9. John McCain (426)
10. Mitt Romney (361)
Besides Simpson (795 jokes), Leno’s top celebrity targets were Michael Jackson (505), Martha Stewart (208) and Paris Hilton (153). Leno’s last day on The Tonight Show is this Friday.