It's the third night of the Festival of Lights, so it's time to reveal another celeb who lit up our year: Jimmy Fallon. He joins the likes of Emma Watson and Chris Pratt and it's easy to see why. 2014 has been quite the year for the new father. In case you need a refresher, or can't stay up past 11 p.m., here's why.
We Celebrate His Chutzpah: Jimmy not only had the nerve to take over The Tonight Show, but he did it without losing the tone and humor fans loved from his late night gig. The comedian kicked off his inaugural show with a little help from some famous friends like Will Smith, Lady Gaga, Kim Kardashian, Rudy Giuliani, Mike Tyson, Lindsay Lohan, U2, Jerry Seinfeld, Justin Timberlake, and Michelle Obama… just to name a few.
"This is the first Tonight Show broadcast from New York in over 40 years," he told the crowd in his opening monologue. "I'm Jimmy Fallon and I'll be your host — for now. Of course, I wouldn't be here tonight if it weren't for the previous Tonight Show hosts, so I want to say thank you to Steve Allen, Johnny Carson, Jay Leno, Conan O'Brien… and Jay Leno."
In his debut, Fallon averaged a 3.8 rating in adults 18-49 and 11.31 million viewers overall, Nielsen estimated. This was the second biggest audience for The Tonight Show since May 2009, behind only Leno’s final episode on Feb. 6. Compared to the Tonight season average on Mondays, Fallon’s debut was up 182 percent in total viewers. Not too shabby.
We Celebrate His Mitzvoth: Fallon found a way to have charities profit from his humor. Take for example Jimmy's single, "EW!" He and will.i.am dressed up as BFFs Sara and mir.i.am and discussed all the things that made them, say "ew." It was the first original song created by The Tonight Show host, it debuted on the Billboard Hot 100 chart at No. 26, and it served one important purpose: proceeds from the single benefited two charities, the SeriousFun Children's Network and will.i.am's i.am.angel Foundation.
This year, Jimmy also participated in Chicago's Polar Plunge – he ran into Lake Michigan in a full suit to raise money for Special Olympics Chicago – and also was one of the first big celebs to jump onboard the Ice Bucket Challenge and donated money to ALS research.
We Celebrate the Miracle of Jimmy: Thank you, Jimmy, for your viral genius. Each week, the comedian delivers multiple web hits, something unprecedented with his competitors. Take, for example, his most recent shtick. On Tuesday's episode of The Tonight Show, Fallon reteamed with his BFF Justin Timberlake for the summer camp skit, "Camp Winnipesaukee." In the clip, they play nerdy, Third Eye Blind-loving bunkmates from 1997, a follow up to their first summer camp sketch two years ago on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon. Take a look.
We light tonight's candle laughing and looking forward to whatever Fallon's going to do next.
See more of our Hanukkah celebrations: