Pioneering and sharp-tongued comedian Joan Rivers, who died on Thursday at age 81, gained a national audience on the Ed Sullivan Show and other late-night TV programs. She was one of Johnny Carson's stand-in hosts on The Tonight Show, and she even had her own late-night show in the 1980s. So on Thursday night, her successors paid tribute to the woman credited with blazing a path for women in comedy, and inspiring men in comedy, too. Here are some of their tributes. --Peter Weber
David Letterman: "Talk about guts!"
Jimmy Kimmel: "She loved her job so much she never wanted to stop, and she didn't have to stop because she was so great at it."
Seth Meyers: "If she were here right now, she'd make a joke about how she just passed away, and she would get away with it."
Conan O'Brien: When Rivers filled in for Johnny Carson, "it was an event — everybody in the country would talk about it the next day."
(If the Conan video doesn't work, you can watch it here.)