Another late-night torch has been passed. This time, the “torch” is the Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover model, who’s being passed from David Letterman to Jimmy Kimmel.
Actually, “passed” may not describe it so well as “snatched.” Last year around this time, CBS issued its annual announcement about the reveal of the year’s SI swimsuit cover and cover model on Dave Letterman’s late-night show, along with the reading of Dave’s Top-10 list by 10 of the issue’s models.
In that announcement, CBS noted that “in what has become a tradition on the broadcast, this will mark the sixth consecutive year that the swimsuit cover is revealed on [Letterman's] show.”
It also marked the last consecutive year.
Monday, ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live announced SI was celebrating the golden anniversary of its swimsuit edition by dumping Dave to reveal the 2014 cover on Kimmel’s show Thursday at 11:35 PM ET. This year’s cover model will appear February 17 for an exclusive late-night interview; the issue goes live across the web, mobile, tablet and newsstands the next morning.
This matters to a late-night show because the issue has a total audience of more than 70 million adults. If this is what Kimmel does to his idol, Dave, wonder what he does to his enemies?
Oh, right — he issues tweets saying: “Issues aside, 20 years at #1 is a remarkable achievement. Congratulations and best wishes to @jayleno on an incredible run.”