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The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s 

Ranker TV
Updated October 17, 2019 973 votes 367 voters 28.7k views 20 items

List Rules Vote up the best talk shows that aired in the '60s

The sixties were a much simpler time in television. Especially when compared to today's multi-platform, basic cable, premium cable, cord-cutting complexities. Back then, the talk show reigned supreme. These are the best1960s talk shows, ranked from best to worst. Some of these talk shows aired in late-night, while others had A.M. time slots. A few of the very best 60s talk shows went on to become cultural phenomenons and changed the way TV is thought about and made forever..

What series will you find on this best 1960s talk shows list? The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson premiered in 1962 and continued to be a favorite with viewers for the next 30 years. It set the bar for generations of late-night shows to follow. The Merv Griffin Show was another good talk show that aired in the 1960s. Meet the Press has been a go-to source for political pundits from 1947 to this day. 

Do you have a favorite talk show from the 1960s? What, in your opinion, is the best 60s talk show?Vote up your choices!
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1
The Tonight Show Starrin... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Johnny Carson, Ed McMahon, Skitch Henderson

Premiered: 1962

The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson is a talk show hosted by Johnny Carson under The Tonight Show franchise from October 1, 1962 through May 22, 1992. It originally aired during late-night. ...more

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#112 of 391 TV Shows That Only Smart People Appreciate #203 of 590 The Best TV Theme Songs of All Time #7 of 158 Shows with the Best Freakin' Series Finales of All Time

2
The Dick Cavett Show is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Leigh French

Premiered: 1968

The Dick Cavett Show was the title of several talk shows hosted by Dick Cavett on various television networks, including: ABC daytime originally titled This Morning ABC prime time, Tuesdays, ...more

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#21 of 56 The Best Late Night Talk Shows of All Time #148 of 249 The Very Best Shows That Aired in the 1960s #36 of 51 The Greatest Variety Shows in TV History

3
The Jack Paar Tonight Sh... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Jack Paar

Premiered: 1957

The Jack Paar Show is a television program.

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#13 of 14 The Most Memorable TV Host Farewells #177 of 249 The Very Best Shows That Aired in the 1960s

4
The Mike Douglas Show is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
The Mike Douglas Show Shirley Temple, Mike Douglas

Premiered: 1961

The Mike Douglas Show is an American daytime television talk show hosted by Mike Douglas that aired only in the Cleveland, Ohio area during much of its first two years on the air. It went into ...more
5
The Dean Martin Show is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Dean Martin, Sandahl Bergman, Dom DeLuise

Premiered: 1965

The Dean Martin Show, also known as The Dean Martin Variety Show, is a TV variety-comedy series that ran from 1965 to 1974 for 264 episodes. It was broadcast by NBC and hosted by entertainer ...more

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#160 of 457 The Funniest TV Shows of All Time #55 of 249 The Very Best Shows That Aired in the 1960s #65 of 271 The Best '70s TV Shows

6
Tonight Starring Steve A... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s

Premiered: 1954

Tonight Starring Steve Allen is a talk show hosted by Steve Allen. It was the first version of what eventually became known as The Tonight Show. Tonight was the first late-night talk show, as ...more
7
American Bandstand is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Dick Clark

Premiered: 1952

American Bandstand is an American music-performance show that aired in various versions from 1952 to 1989 and was hosted from 1956 until its final season by Dick Clark, who also served as ...more

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#192 of 590 The Best TV Theme Songs of All Time #16 of 41 The Best Dance TV Shows #10 of 29 The Best "American" TV Shows

8
The Merv Griffin Show is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
nm0871546

Premiered: 1962

The Merv Griffin Show was an American television talk show, starring Merv Griffin. The series ran from October 1, 1962 to March 29, 1963 on NBC, May 1965 to August 15, 1969 in first-run ...more
9
The Jackie Gleason Show ... is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Tina Louise, Bettie Page, Jackie Gleason

Premiered: 1952

The Jackie Gleason Show is the name of a series of popular American network television shows that starred Jackie Gleason, which ran from 1952 to 1970, in various forms.

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#58 of 249 The Very Best Shows That Aired in the 1960s #40 of 70 The Greatest TV Shows of the 1950s #2 of 16 The Most Popular TV Shows Of The 1950s

10
The Phil Donahue Show is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Phil Donahue, Sammy Davis Jr., Dolly Parton

Premiered: 1967

The Phil Donahue Show, also known as Donahue, is an American television talk show hosted by Phil Donahue that ran for 26 years on national television. Its run was preceded by three years of ...more

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#24 of 67 The Best Talk Shows On TV #20 of 34 The Best Daytime Talk Shows

11
The Today Show is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Ann Curry, Anita Colby

Premiered: 1952

Today is an American news and talk morning television show that airs on NBC. The program debuted on January 14, 1952. It was the first of its genre on American television and in the world, and ...more

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The Best Today Show Hosts #8 of 60 The Best Daytime TV Shows #1 of 34 The Best Morning Shows

12
Firing Line is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
William F. Buckley, Jr.

Premiered: 1966

Firing Line was an American public affairs show founded and hosted by conservative William F. Buckley, Jr., founder and publisher of National Review magazine. Its 1,504 episodes over 33 years ...more
13
The Steve Allen Show is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Peggy Lee, Steve Allen, Al Flosso

Premiered: 1956

The Steve Allen Show was an American variety show hosted by Steve Allen from June 1956 to June 1960 on NBC, from September 1961 to December 1961 on ABC, and in first-run syndication from 1962 to ...more

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14
The Joan Rivers Show is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Joan Rivers

Premiered: 1989

15
Face the Nation is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Howard K. Smith, Lesley Stahl, Martin Agronsky

Premiered: 1954

Face the Nation is an American Sunday morning political interview show that is broadcast on the CBS television network. Created by Frank Stanton in 1954, it is one of the longest-running news ...more
16
Meet the Press is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
David Gregory

Premiered: 1947

Meet the Press is a weekly American television news/interview program that is broadcast on NBC. It is the longest-running program in American television history, though its current format bears ...more

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#19 of 29 The Best TV Shows of the 1940s #3 of 12 The Best Sunday Morning Shows

17
The Joey Bishop Show is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Don Knotts, Marlo Thomas, Joey Bishop

Premiered: 1961

The Joey Bishop Show is an American sitcom starring entertainer Joey Bishop. The series premiered in September 1961 on NBC where it aired for three seasons. The series then moved to CBS for its ...more
18
The Las Vegas Show is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
The Las Vegas Show Bill Dana

Premiered: 1967

The Las Vegas Show is an American late night television program broadcast on the short-lived United Network. The two-hour-long talk show, hosted by comedian Bill Dana, was supposed to be the ...more
19
The Late Late Show is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s
Pat Kenny, Ryan Tubridy, Gay Byrne

Premiered: 1962

The Late Late Show, with its title often shortened to The Late Late, is the world's longest-running talk show. Perceived as the official flagship television programme of Ireland's public service ...more
20
Washington Week is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Talk Shows of the 1960s

Premiered: 1967

Washington Week—previously Washington Week in Review—is an American public affairs television program airing on PBS since 1967. Unlike other panel discussion shows which encourage informal ...more