Show Business: Racing for Midnight

For nearly ten years NBC's Johnny Carson has monopolized TV's late hours with his facile, funny and cool show-biz chatter. ABC hoped to cut into his audience with Dick Cavett and a more intellectual approach. CBS aimed to bring him down with that old Beverly Hillbilly Merv Griffin. But neither even approached his ratings, and Carson remained undisputed king of the insomniacs. No longer. Since CBS replaced Griffin with a lineup of late movies twelve weeks ago, Carson, for the first time in a decade, has found himself in a ratings race.

It is a race he often loses. Since the movies...

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