Entertainment
424 voters

The Best Talk Show Hosts Of Daytime, Late Night, and All Time

May 29, 2020 7.5k votes 424 voters 4.3k views155 items

List RulesVote up the hosts who truly had the most, whether they were on daytime, late night or any time in-between.

There have been as many top talk show hosts as there have been types of talk shows over the years. Everyone has a favorite, someone they think is the best late-night talk show host or the daytime talk show they love to spend each morning with. As some talk shows have been around a long time, there are also opinions about who was the best host of this show or that show. But, if all things were equal and you had to decide who was the best talk show host - from any time slot, any era, any type of show, who would you pick?

Is Johnny Carson really the best talk show host of all time when he's going up against Barbara Walters and Arsenio Hall? Who rules the roost: Kelly Ripa or Oprah? And what about Ellen, Letterman, Eric Andre, and Sally Jesse Raphael? When it comes down to raw skill against raw skill, charm against charm, and the pure ability to guide a conversation and nail an interview, what talk show hosts are the best?

It's a difficult decision, but don't worry, you can vote for as many talk show hosts as you like. So vote up the best talk show hosts and vote down the hosts who wish they had the most.

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    108

    Conan O'Brien

    Late Night with Conan O'Brien, Conan

    GenderMale

    Conan Christopher O'Brien (born April 18, 1963) is an American television host, comedian, writer, and producer. He is best known for hosting several late-night talk shows; since 2010, he has hosted...  more
  • 2
    150
    50

    Johnny Carson

    The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson

    GenderMale

    Alternative NameJohnny Carson

    John William Carson (October 23, 1925 – January 23, 2005) was an American television host, comedian, writer, and producer. He is best known as the host of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson...  more
  • 3
    166
    77

    Graham Norton

    The Graham Norton Show

    GenderMale

    Graham William Walker (born 4 April 1963), known professionally as Graham Norton, is an Irish television and radio presenter, comedian, actor, author, and commentator based in the United Kingdom. He...  more
  • 4
    146
    66

    Craig Ferguson

    The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson

    GenderMale

    Craig Ferguson (born 17 May 1962) is a Scottish-American television host, comedian, author, and actor. He hosted the syndicated game show Celebrity Name Game (2014–17), for which he won two Daytime...  more
  • 5
    141
    67

    David Letterman

    The Late Show with David Letterman, My Next Guest Needs No Introduction

    GenderMale

    Alternative NameDavid Letterman

    David Michael Letterman (born April 12, 1947) is an American television host, comedian, writer, producer and automobile racing team owner. He hosted late night television talk shows for 33 years,...  more
  • 6
    76
    34

    Dick Cavett

    The Dick Cavett Show

    GenderMale

    Richard Alva Cavett (; born November 19, 1936) is an American television personality, comedian and former talk show host notable for his conversational style and in-depth discussions. He appeared...  more
  • 7
    89
    59

    Jon Stewart

    The John Stewart Show, The Daily Show

    GenderMale

    Jon Stewart (born Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz; November 28, 1962) is an American comedian, writer, producer, director, activist, political commentator, actor, and television host. He hosted The Daily...  more
  • 8
    63
    37

    Ed Sullivan

    The Ed Sullivan Show

    GenderMale

    Edward Vincent Sullivan (September 28, 1901 – October 13, 1974) was an American television personality, sports and entertainment reporter, and syndicated columnist for the New York Daily News and the...  more
  • 9
    96
    71

    Stephen Colbert

    The Daily Show, The Colbert Report

    GenderMale

    Alternative NameStephen Colbert

    Stephen Tyrone Colbert ( kohl-BAIR; born May 13, 1964) is an American comedian, writer, producer, political commentator, actor, and television host. He is best known for hosting the satirical Comedy...  more
  • 10
    52
    31

    Regis Philbin

    Live! with Regis and Kelly, Live with Regis

    GenderMale

    Regis Francis Xavier Philbin (August 25, 1931 – July 24, 2020) was an American media personality, actor, and singer, known for hosting talk and game shows since the 1960s. Philbin holds the Guinness...  more
  • 11
    48
    29

    Jack Paar

    The Jack Paar Tonight Show

    GenderMale

    Jack Harold Paar (May 1, 1918 – January 27, 2004) was an American author, movie actor, radio and television comedian, and talk show host. He is best known for his stint as the second host of The...  more
  • 12
    79
    64

    John Oliver

    Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

    GenderMale

    John William Oliver (born 23 April 1977) is an English comedian, writer, producer, political commentator, actor, and television host. Oliver started his career as a stand-up comedian, both in the...  more
  • 13
    28
    10

    Merv Griffin

    The Merv Griffin Show

    GenderMale

    Mervyn Edward Griffin Jr. (July 6, 1925 – August 12, 2007) was an American television host and media mogul. He began his career as a radio and big band singer who went on to appear in film and on...  more
  • 14
    50
    37

    Phil Donahue

    The Phil Donahue Show, Donahue

    GenderMale

    Phillip John Donahue (born December 21, 1935) is an American media personality, writer, film producer, and the creator and host of The Phil Donahue Show. His television program, later known as...  more
  • 15
    63
    52

    Arsenio Hall

    The Arsenio Hall Show

    GenderMale

    Arsenio Hall (born February 12, 1956) is an American comedian, talk show host, actor, writer and producer. He is best known for hosting The Arsenio Hall Show, a late-night talk show that ran from...  more
  • 16
    84
    81

    Jimmy Kimmel

    Jimmy Kimmel Live!

    GenderMale

    James Christian Kimmel (born November 13, 1967) is an American television host, comedian, writer, and producer. He is the host and executive producer of Jimmy Kimmel Live!, a late-night talk show...  more
  • 17
    21
    8

    Dick Clark

    The Other Half

    GenderMale

    Richard Augustus Wagstaff "Dick" Clark, Jr. was an American radio and television personality, as well as a cultural icon who remains best known for hosting American Bandstand from 1957 to 1987. He...  more
  • 18
    27
    15

    Steve Allen

    The Tonight Show, The New Steve Allen Show

    GenderMale

    Alternative NameSteve Allen

    Stephen Valentine Patrick William Allen (December 26, 1921 – October 30, 2000) was an American television personality, radio personality, musician, composer, actor, comedian, writer, and advocate of...  more
  • 19
    55
    49

    Barbara Walters

    Today, The View

    GenderFemale

    Barbara Jill Walters (born September 25, 1929) is an American broadcast journalist, author, and television personality. Walters has hosted a variety of television programs, including Today, The View,...  more
  • 20
    49
    43

    Jane Pauley

    Today, The Jane Pauley Show

    GenderFemale

    Margaret Jane Pauley (born October 31, 1950), known as Jane Pauley, is an American television journalist and author, active in news reporting since 1972. She is the anchor of CBS Sunday Morning....  more
  • 21
    40
    32

    Eric Andre

    The Eric Andre Show
    Eric Andre (born April 4, 1983) is an American actor, comedian, and television host. He is the creator, host, and co-writer of The Eric Andre Show on Adult Swim and played Mike on the FXX series Man...  more
  • 22
    22
    12

    Ricki Lake

    Ricki Lake, The Ricki Lake Show

    GenderFemale

    Ricki Pamela Lake (born September 21, 1968) is an American actress, television presenter and producer. Lake is best known for her lead role as Tracy Turnblad in the 1988 film Hairspray. She is also...  more
  • 23
    41
    35

    GenderMale

    Jeremy Charles Robert Clarkson (born 11 April 1960) is an English broadcaster, journalist and writer who specialises in motoring. He is best known for co-presenting the motoring programmes Top Gear,...  more
  • 24
    33
    28

    Wayne Brady

    The Wayne Brady Show

    GenderMale

    Wayne Alphonso Brady (born June 2, 1972) is an American actor, singer, and comedian who is a regular on the American version of the improvisational comedy television series Whose Line Is It Anyway?...  more
  • 25
    60
    62

    Oprah Winfrey

    The Oprah Winfrey Show

    GenderFemale

    Alternative NameOprah Winfrey

    Oprah Gail Winfrey (born Orpah Gail Winfrey, January 29, 1954) is an American media executive, actress, talk show host, television producer and philanthropist. She is best known for her talk show...  more