David Letterman returns to NBC Friday in an interview with Tom Brokaw on "On Assignment," a limited spin-off series from "Dateline NBC" (10 p.m. Friday, Channel 5, NBC).
The Letterman interview – which was pre-empted Sunday by the Orlando mass shooting coverage – is his first since leaving his CBS "Late Show" a year ago.
According to NBC, Letterman "explains why he grew a beard (and) what he thinks of late night now." Taped Memorial Day weekend in Letterman's hometown of Indianapolis, "Letterman spoke candidly about Donald Trump and shares memories of Johnny Carson." He also questioned the lack of women hosting late-night shows."
NBC also provided a transcript to the above video:
TOM BROKAW: Do you miss every night?
DAVID LETTERMAN: No. You know, I don't. And -- and it's interesting. I thought for sure I would. And then, the first day of Stephen's show when he went on the air -- an energy left me and I felt like, ‘You know, that's not my problem anymore.’ And I've kind of felt that way ever since. I devoted so much time to the damage of other aspects of my life -- (I've) concentrated, fixated, focusing on that -- it's good now to not have that. I couldn't care less about late night television. I'm happy for the guys -- men and women -- there should be more women. And I don't know why they didn't give my show to a woman. That would have been fine. You know, I'm happy for their success. And they're doing things I couldn't do. So that's great.
BROKAW: Did they ask you about who should replace you?
LETTERMAN: No. Oh, no. No, they didn't ask me about anything. They were just -- (LAUGH) they were just happy I was going. (LAUGH)
"On Assignment" includes segments by Lester Holt on a special community police unit in Watts, South Los Angeles, and Kate Snow reporting on "a drug industry insider, Steven Francesco, whose son died suddenly from a rare side effect of taking antipsychotics."
Tonight "Dateline" airs a "compelling new look" at the 1969 LA murders by Cincinnati native Charles Manson at 8 p.m. – which just happens to be immediately before NBC's "Aquarius" drama about the Manson murders returns for a second summer tonight (9-11 p.m. Thursday, Channel 5, NBC).
NBC says "Dateline" correspondent Keith Morrison "takes a compelling new look at the Manson murders, the mystery that gripped the country during the summer of ‘69. The one-hour special features rarely-seen footage from the NBC archives, including interviews with Charles Manson and the late-prosecutor Vincent Bugliosi. Morrison also speaks with key players in the case, including: Barbara Hoyt, former Manson family member; Debra Tate, victim Sharon Tate’s sister; Anthony DiMaria, victim Jay Sebring’s nephew; Virginia Graham, key witness for the prosecution and Jerry DeRosa, first officer on the scene of the murders of Tate, Sebring and three others."