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James Corden’s ‘Late Late Show’ launch off to decent start

It’s clear that James Corden will have to go quite a ways to make a huge impact on late-night TV viewership, but his “Late Late Show” debut Monday was certainly not a disaster.

Though Corden’s first night lagged about a half-millon views behind predecessor Craig Ferguson’s 2005 bow, Corden’s 1.66 million viewers did allow him to beat NBC rival Seth Meyers’ show by approximaely 100,000 pairs of eyeballs.

Yet, CBS is very happy with the virtual unknown Corden’s beginning — noting his ratings provided the show with its largest audience since mid-November 2011. Compared to the last quarter of 2014, “Late Late” was up 13 percent in total viewership, and up 33 percent in the all-important 18-to-49 adult demographic.

Of course, only time will tell if Corden’s tenure at “The Late Late Show” is more like Ferguson’s or if (hopefully not) he crashes and burns like another fellow Brit, who failed with his attempt to make it on American talk TV: Piers Morgan at CNN.