I know a lot of listeners and fans post on here about how bad the show has become and how they no longer tune in any more. I know, I feel your pain because I am one of them. I no longer feel compelled to tune in on a daily basis, and I know I'm not really missing anything if I don't.
The recycled bits, the lack of on-air energy and the seemingly zero effort to put out a listenable product comes across as lazy radio, plain and simple.
I'm not going to go on a rant, because at this point it's all been said before. Yes the show stinks. It's a fact. So I am going to make a few suggestions which from my perspective would begin to improve the show immediately. In no particular order they are:
1. Better guests. Yeah I know that is not necessarily up to Howard and the staff, but at this point I'd rather listen to dead air than one more go-round with Joan Rivers or Sandra Bernhard. And while I'm on the topic of guests, I REALLY wish Howard would do a better job of interviewing the ones he has. Howard, let the guest answer, don't rush one question after another like you need to psychoanalyze. Don't be "Howard Stern" for a change. If you've matured and evolved, it's okay to drop the obligatory how-big-is-your-dick-how-much-are-you-worth-how-often-you-get-laid questions. Because we all know no one is ever going to give you an honest answer anyway.
2. Get Fred more involved. Is it just me, or has he disappeared from the air in recent years? It's like the dude has gotten as lazy as his boss. It's almost as if the only reason he's there is to tell Howard which commercial to do next. If I hear him go "I-I-I-I-I-I-Identity Guarrrrrrrd" one more time I'm going to go mental. Where are the timely sound effects? Where's Kurt Waldheim Jr?? Fred, why are you treading water???
3. Having someone sit in "The Artie Chair" more often. Okay, this too has been beaten to death, but just Howard babbling back and forth with Robin all morning is simply not cutting it. They don't need a third person full time necessarily, but something HAS to be done to break up the monotony. And as much as I love George Takei, he has grown as stale and predictable as the rest of the show already.
4. Take calls from the listeners more often. Of course this will never happen, but I am sure you all remember the days when Howard would take a call and get into an arguement with a caller which would go on for half an hour. But for whatever reason, these days Howard needs to insulate himself from the audience, and all we get is safe and santized calls from the same people ad nauseum. When he goes to the phone I immediately think, why bother? It's not going to go anywhere.
5. Get some decent writers. Howard desperately needs some capable people with a modicum of comedic talent to put some words in his mouth. I have absolutely NO clue as to why Benjy is a "writer" for the show. He adds nothing and when he gets some actual airtime, it's like change the channel time. He has zero personality, his "shtick" is utterly tedious and he is simply not funny.
6. Howard, please. No more impressions of Ted Kennedy, your parents, or bullshit stories about growing up white with black kids. It's boring, lame and spectacularly unfunny. And while you're at it, you can stop enthralling us with your supposed masturbation sessions with a box of Kleenex and babysitter porn. I for one think it's a pile of bullshit you make up on the spot, and if somehow it is true, the image of a scrawny disheveled 58 year old Jewish man thus engaged makes me want to gag.
7. And the most hopeless item on my list. Less AGT talk.
These are just a few things off the top of my head which would make the show better immediately and get me to listen more often and certainly with more enthusiasm. Feel free to add your own.