How Diane Sawyer Helped Inspire David Letterman’s First Top 10 List

By Chris Ariens 

As David Letterman signs off for the final time tonight, we’re looking back at his first Top 10 list. It was delivered Sept. 18, 1985 on NBC’s Late Night and was inspired by those lists often found in women’s magazines — now ubiquitous in digital media (everything old is new again).

“Because these things are so popular and such solid network-television programming material, we’ve decided tonight to start our own Top 10 list,” said Letterman. When he closes up shop tonight, Letterman will have delivered 4,605 Top 10 Lists. Here’s the first:

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