TELEVISION: LETTERMAN UBER ALLES

WANT TO HOST A LATE-NIGHT TALK SHOW? FROM MOSCOW TO BUENOS AIRES, THE MODEL IS DAVE

The host, a tall, bespectacled fellow with a wry expression and fidgety body language, bounds onstage to the beat of the house rock band. He grimaces when jokes don't work, makes small talk with the nerdy bandleader, obsessively repeats words and names that strike his fancy. Sitting at his desk, a nighttime cityscape in the background, he stops periodically to take a sip from a glass of tap water. Each time, he offers the same exaggerated show of pleasure: "I say yes to German water!"

It's as good an impression of David Letterman as you'll find outside Saturday Night Live. And...