TV

Seth Meyers' 'Late Night' debut is a win-win with Poehler and Biden

Feb. 25, 2014 at 3:08 AM ET

Seth Meyers kicked off his "Late Night" debut with a little help from his friends — especially Amy Poehler, his first guest. 

The two have been pals since 2001, when they both joined "SNL," eventually becoming co-anchors on the Weekend Update segment. 

"You are going to do such a wonderful job," the "Parks and Rec" star reassured Meyers, who was admittedly nervous about his first talk-show gig. Then she quipped: "I have watched you for 13 years pretend to listen to people."

Meyers also got a cold-open assist from his predecessor and lead-in, Jimmy Fallon — now ruling the roost at "The Tonight Show."

Borrowing from Fallon's "Late Night" Thank You Notes sketch, Meyers said from his brand-new desk, "I promise to treat [the show] with respect and dignity, and to only use it to do completely original comedy pieces. Starting now."

Meyers' nerves were showing a bit in his monologue, but an exchange with his bandleader, Fred Armisen — another "SNL" pal, who composed the "Late Night" theme song — quickly set him at ease. 

Noting that his IFC comedy "Portlandia" was returning soon for a fourth season, Armisen touted his new History Channel series, "Recent History." 

"It only goes back the past hour or so, but with a historical spin, so you know the importance of everything," he deadpanned to his justifiably incredulous host. "It's very serious. Very dry."

Armisen also bantered with Poehler — who feigned resentment about a fictional breakup.

"It's hard sometimes to be friends after being very turbulent lovers," she told Meyers, casting a dirty look at the 8G Band musical director.

Speaking of "turbulent lovers," Meyers drew support from yet another "SNL" comrade in his opening night: Stefon. Sitting atop Meyers' spartan desk was a Russian doll bearing the face — and wedding veil — of the Weekend Update underground club correspondent whom Meyers "married" in Bill Hader's epic "SNL" sendoff.

Poehler, who garnered rave reviews for co-hosting the Golden Globes with Tina Fey, used her "Late Night" spot to "wave the white flag" in her pranking war with George Clooney. 

"I want to say something to George Clooney that no woman has ever said to him: 'George, please stop,'" she wisecracked. 

Clooney may be one of Hollywood's biggest movie stars, but Poehler reserved her praise for Meyers' next guest, Vice President Joe Biden, whom she called a "gorgeous charm monster." (In fact, she even tried to sit on his lap when he snagged a seat beside Meyers.) 

It was a reunion for Poehler and Biden, who had a memorable cameo on "Parks and Recreation." When Meyers asked them about their next project, Poehler had a ready answer: "Snakes on a Train," she said. 

The VP was less forthcoming about his own intentions for the 2016 election: "I planned on making a major announcement tonight," he told Meyers, "but I decided tonight's your night."


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