David Letterman’s final Top Ten list drew everyone from Steve Martin to Peyton Manning to honor the late night legend, and folks who missed it on Wednesday can now watch the final list online.
The final topic for the list was “Things I’ve Always Wanted to Say to Dave,” and stars turned out to finally share their thoughts with Dave. Each number came from a different celebrity, drawing Bill Murray, Tina Fey, Chris Rock, Peyton Manning, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jim Carrey, Jerry Seinfeld, Steve Martin, Barbara Walters, and Alec Baldwin.
There were many standouts, including Manning, who told Letterman, “You are to comedy what I am to comedy.”
Here is the full transcript of David Letterman’s final Top Ten list.
- Alec Baldwin: “Of all the talk shows, yours is the most geographically convenient to my home.”
- Barbara Walters: “Did you know that you wear the same cologne as Muammar Qaddafi?”
- Steve Martin: “Your extensive plastic surgery was a necessity and a mistake.”
- Jerry Seinfeld: “I have no idea what I’ll do when you go off the air … You know, I just thought of something– I’ll be fine.”
- Jim Carrey: “Honestly, Dave, I’ve always found you to be a bit of an over-actor.”
- Chris Rock: “I’m just glad your show is being given to another white guy.”
- Julia Louis-Dreyfus: “Thanks for letting me take part in another hugely disappointing series finale.”
- Peyton Manning: “You are to comedy what I am to comedy.”
- Tina Fey: “Thanks for finally proving men can be funny.”
- Bill Murray: “I’ll never have the money I owe you.”
David Letterman had plenty of his own hilarious moment in his Late Show sendoff, which was filled with celebrity guests, old clips, and behind-the-scenes looks at the people who put the show together. Letterman had one of the best lines during his monologue.
“It’s beginning to look like I’m not getting The Tonight Show,” he quipped, referencing the heated battle back in the early 1990s to replace Johnny Carson, a job eventually given to Jay Leno.
Another highlight was the final Top Ten list. The list itself had an interesting origin. Back when the show was on NBC, the writers were trying to come up with a recurring bit for Letterman, and head writer Steve O’Donnell said they wanted to lampoon some of the ridiculous lists included in New York papers almost as filler.
In a New York Times article, O’Donnell explained the following.
“[The Top Ten was] largely prompted by the ridiculous ‘eligible bachelor’ lists in a local New York paper that included the 84-year-old Bill Paley. ‘Why, we can put such nonsense together ourselves!’ we exclaimed. And we did.”
The first Top Ten list was read on September 18, 1985. The list, titled “Top Ten Things That Almost Rhyme With Peas,” reads as follows: “Heats, rice, moss, ties, needs, lens, ice, nurse, leaks, and—No. 1—meats.”
Possibly due to the strange start, O’Donnell said he thought the list would last a few weeks, but instead it went on nearly 30 more years until the final Top Ten list aired on David Letterman’s last show.
[Image via Getty Images]