WOMEN WE LOVE: Taylor Tomlinson
Selling out arenas, performing on late-night TV, Tiktok comedy – there is nothing that comedian Taylor Tomlinson can’t do. Just before her 30th birthday, which happened recently on November 4th, Taylor was announced as the new host for the late-night talk show “After Midnight”, which is set to take place in 12:30am slot on the CBS network, previously held by James Corden’s “The Late Late Show”. Not to mention, she will be the youngest late-night host by more than 20 years! To understand Taylor Tomlinson’s rise to fame, let’s take a look at who she is and how her incredible talents have brought her to the center of the late night stage.
Taylor Tomlinson began doing stand-up when she was only 16 years old. She performed her first stand-up set in her church and, since then, began working the church circuit. But if you think this makes her a docile and reserved comic, then you would be way off the mark. As Taylor began to develop her act, it is evident that she is a fresh, bold voice who’s not afraid to tackle darker topics with the skill of a light-hearted tone. One such example is her material about her mother, who unfortunately passed away when she was only a child but appears as a frequent topic in her stand-up sets.
In later variations of her act, she is similarly unafraid to approach topics including mental illness, aging, and family trauma. Her skill at joke-crafting led her to be featured on Netflix’s “The Comedy Lineup” in 2018, a show that allowed up-and-coming comedians a chance to perform on Netflix while maintaining the comedy club-style 15-minute sets. Her outstanding performance on the show also led her to be noticed by late night giant Conan O’Brien, whom she hit the road together with (and various other comics) for his 2019 tour Conan & Friends: An Evening Of Stand-Up And Investment Tips. Her endorsement by Conan is truly deserved and points to her ingenuity and competence as a stand-up comedian. In an interview with StyleCaster, Conan noted, “Taylor’s secret weapons are her authenticity and her bravery… she’s not afraid to share things openly from her childhood or her adult life.”
After performing at the Just For Laughs Festival in 2019, she was named one of the Top 10 Comics to Watch by Variety; this was preceded by her being named one of the Top 10 finalists on the 9th season of NBC’s “Last Comic Standing” in 2015.
Evidently, Taylor Tomlinson has no shortage of accolades when it comes to her stand-up comedy. This ultimately led her to her debut Netflix Comedy special, “Quarter-life Crisis”, released in 2020. In her special, she’s not one to shy away from serious issues in her adult life, such as a failed engagement and the experience of being cheated on. In her most recent Netflix special, “Look At You”, she delves deeper into the realm of mental health and discusses being diagnosed with bipolar disorder at length.
Her range of humor that allows her to approach dark topics with dexterity while still leaving audiences feeling hopeful afterwards is part of her charm both as a person and as a stand-up comedian. There is no doubt that her charming demeanor and friendly personality will shine in her new role as host of the show “After Midnight”.
With all that Taylor has accomplished, it comes as no surprise that Taylor’s mastery of the craft has brought her onto the center stage of late-night TV. Taylor’s fresh voice stepping onto network TV not only represents the beginning of the next generation of comics taking over the comedic landscape but also breaks the mold of late-night TV being an all-boys club. Fans of Taylor can look forward to watching her third stand-up special, set to release in February next year, and catch her as host of “After Midnight” on CBS beginning in 2024!