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Friday, January 23, 2009

In Which I am Despicably Betrayed

A few years ago when NBC announced that Conan O’Brien would be taking over the Tonight Show in 2009, I was really excited.

I think Conan is funny. Although I don’t regularly watch his show, I could see me watching it more often, you know, if my DVR was empty, or broken. In contrast, I’ve been trying to figure out who likes Jay Leno since forever. I don’t actually know anyone who likes him. Does anyone honestly think he’s funny? I figured that the Tonight Show got good ratings because some portion of the viewing public has a habit of tuning in, not because they really liked the show.

“Maybe your mom likes Jay Leno?” I questioned Other Half. He said, continuing a pattern from throughout our married life, “Huh?”
“No, the correct answer is YOUR mom likes the Tonight Show,” I said, finishing the joke for him.

Given my constant state of confusion about Jay Leno, you can imagine how shocked and appalled I was at NBC’s recent decision to not only keep Jay Leno, but to move him to the 9/10pm slot five nights a week.

Let’s get this straight:

I hope this fails. Fails like Oprah. Fails like the CCCP, the Byzantine Empire, and Rome.
Fails like your mom in Kindergarten.

How dare they? I don’t just mean removing five hours of prime time programming, which is clearly bad enough, I mean keeping Jay Leno and destroying the hope that I’ve carried for a decade. The hope that my children will grow up in a world where they don’t have to see that kind of blight on television, that they will be able to tune into late night and actually laugh, you know, at jokes that are funny instead of awful. Dashing my hopes that we’ll never have to see anything that painfully mediocre ever again.

I am incensed.

After all of that, are you closet Leno Lovers willing to out yourselves?



40 comments:

emily said...

I don't love Leno. I watch it occasionally because I like headlines, and I like the guitar player. But five hours of primetime? No thanks. I LOVE Conan.

~j. said...

I don't watch Leno. I know from seeing him elsewhere that he's not unfunny, per se, but the writing on that show is horrible.

You know who has been a writer on all the funny shows? Conan.

amelia said...

Conan. I love him. I used to like Letterman, but he's kind of fallen into the "Grumpy old man" category in recent months/years.

amelia said...

(P.S. Yeah BlogHer ads! Congrats!)

Azúcar said...

Amelia - Final step in the master plan complete!

Marge Bjork said...

I think my mom does like Jay Leno, actually.

Azúcar said...

I knew it had to be someone's mom.

evitafjord said...

Craig Ferguson. LATE night, but I work until midnight, so he's still on when I'm done.

fijiangirl said...

The only thing I find funny on the Tonight Show is when Jay shows stupid newspaper clippings. And of course that isn't him or his writers! What a blow to Conan, who I think is super funny. Too bad I can't stay up that late to watch him.

Marilyn said...

Carina, I am actually passionate about this topic. I cannot stand Leno. Cannot stand him, with a passion.

I love Conan and can hardly wait to see him in the 11:35 slot.

But having said all of that, I must confess...we still watch Leno, almost every night. I can't stand him and don't find him funny at all, but yet we still watch him.

The only explanation is that he comes on right after our favorite local news and we are too lazy to switch the channel...and if we suffer through his horrible monologue and awkward celebrity interviews long enough, then we might still be awake to watch our real late night hero Conan.

I full-heartedly amen that he should not (no, never) have been given the 10pm slot. And I hope it fails too.

Wow, that was long...I'm going to friend you now.

La Yen said...

But, if we don't see celebrity "interviews" five nights a week, how will we know what to do or think or say?

When he did stand up, like thirty years ago, he was funny. I think.

Sue said...

I like when he interviews the people on the street, but I have a very low amusement threshold. Jay is just sort of comfort tv for a lot of people, but I agree that it's a travesty that they are putting him on for five hours in prime time. Give that spot to Conan (who I love, but rarely see because it's just too late) or Joel from the Soup. Or Jon Stewart.

Sister Pottymouth said...

WHAT?!?!? No Conan? I'm disgusted. I don't hate Leno, but I don't like him particularly either. I was really looking forward to a change. I mean, if we're going to have a change in the White House, can't we have a change on TV as well? Sheesh.

Justine said...

I'm still mad Johnny Carson had to go and get old.

lisa said...

I don't like Leno at all...and neither does my mom.

April said...

I'm a fan of Conesie (my pet name for him). I love his giant head and vibrant red hair. I love how he constantly makes an ass of himself. I love "In the Year 2000." He's awesome.

I only tune into Leno if there's a band on I like.

ClistyB said...

ok all ya comic snobs, I have no problems with Jay Leno. I don't tune in to watch him, it's whoever sits on his couch that I'
m after.

You can be sure his prime time show will have a diff twist, thus making it easier for the rest of you to stomach him. heh heh

Terri said...

I despise Leno. It was also a rule of dating for me. I could never be with a man who liked Leno.

Queen Scarlett said...

I have a crush on Conan.

He becomes part of the fun when he interviews. He is genuinely on, and funny. Conan can make any empty, dull celebrity interview entertaining - because he is hilarious. I too wish Leno had just exited into his garage.

Kacy said...

This is SUCH a rip-off to Conan. I heard a story about this on the radio. Leno (who sucks) offered to do like 365 shows a year to stay in the game. These talk shows are a lot cheaper than the dramas so it's a way for TV to keep up in this DVR world. (I hope they find some other way.)

My concern is, what does this mean for Law and Order?

Ryan and Susie said...

Are you freakin' kidding me. NBC must really be hurting. They're loosing ER, which I agree is a good thing. But that's prime time and they could be using it for so much better. What about Conan? I like Conan. Did he get the shaft or what?

By the way, this is Oprah's last season. Good thing. I much prefer Ellen, good laughs there.

2frog said...

Leno is crap
Ferguson is crap
Oprah and Ellen are both crap.
Conan is decent, Letterman is OK.
The end.

Kalli Ko said...

seriously...

leno in primetime?

Azúcar said...

Yes. Leno. In primetime. Fifth horse of the Apocalypse.

Conan still gets the Tonight Show.

So this means that Conan still follows Leno, with a news break in between. Lovely.

kiki said...

Leno is lame! I can't believe he's staying on NBC. I am also in the camp of people who hope his show fails.

i i eee said...

I second the Leno is lame! I also hope for him to fail. NBC would fair better putting reruns of 30 Rock and even The Office during that time slot instead of more Leno lame.

The Hytes said...

You must write a book! I would devour every word. SO FUNNY!!!

I loathe Leno. I went to see a Letterman show and my faith in his humor was destroyed. I have since stopped watching all late night talk shows all together minus a random Conan every month or two.

Shelby Lou said...

i am trying to steady myself right now. not because of all the leno talk but because you joined facebook.

*sits in awe*

woah, ok back to leno. never watched him. he looks like he is wearing make up CONSTANTLY. and conan is great. he makes me laugh.

Laura said...

I'm outing myself...I don't mind Leno. Don't love him, but can tolerate him better than Letterman who has been so not funny in recent years. However, it's just laziness to stick Leno in primetime rather than developing something great. However, Leno is better than ER anyday.

I really like Conan, but it drives me crazy that he can't stand still. He's always rocking back and forth. Makes me sick to watch.

Mrs. Organic said...

I do like me a little Conan and some Craig Ferguson (except for his stupid skits), but at least they are both funny.

Leno? Meh.

Shawn said...

OHHHH, I HATE JAY LENO!! (did I write that loud enough?)

And he is sooooooooo very unattractive, that I can't figure out how anyone can stand to look at him----I mean, lets get real, girl---who can stand that CHIN!

All that money and he can't have a chin reduction?

franticjoy said...

God, I hate Jay Leno. He's the person for whom the "badump-bump" drum roll was invented. Think of the lamest joke for any situation, and Jay Leno is the one saying it.

Tiffany UnTwisted said...

I won't bother to comment on Leno. Waste of breath. Instead, I'll go on and on about my two absolute crushes. One who you've mentioned -- Conan. I swear, he even mentions Finland and I die laughing. That was hilarious. And *sigh* or as iiee would say *le Sigh* then there's Stephen. Seriously, Stephen Colbert could probably be the only man in America that could convince me that polygamy would work.

A Few Tacos Shy... said...

I'm going to look at the Leno in primetime problem as a short term one. I seriously doubt he can generate enough in ratings to last very long (she says with fingers crossed)...

-Alta

Marie said...

I wondered why Jay had crept up to 10:00! Ick! I loathe him with a profound loathing.

[Marie pauses here to do a little online research, gets herself up-to-speed on this shocking new development...]

My deep and abiding love for Conan is only increased by his good-natured reaction to having to put up with that lame duck as his opening act for five more years.

Then again, Conan's not likely to keep his edge in that earlier timeslot -- it eventually got to Dave. Maybe I should call NBC and beg them to keep Conan late and fabulous.

Holly said...

we knew that when leno made his announcement five years ago he wouldn't really go away. and we've been looking forward to it because he is SO.NOT.FUNNY. he is dirty. and he goes for the easy dirty joke every chance he gets.

let us all hope and pray (okay, maybe not pray) that in the year 2000 jay leno will fail and conan o'brien will marvelously succeed.

c jane said...

Did someone say something about polygamy?

Azúcar said...

I sure hope so.

Susan said...

I don't like Leno. I also don't like Conan.

lemony lucy said...

Ever oncet Conan is very funny (his martha stewart ironing bit still makes me chuckle inside and that was years ago). Leno-never funny. Craig-usually mildy humorous, with occasional chances of sharp wit. Colbert-sometimes genius. My new favorite is Chelsea Lately on E! Yes, on E!.
Her interactions with guests are the best. The monologue at the beginning is rarely great, but beats Leno any day. Yes, it can be dirty. She makes fun of everyone, so if yer a fair weather friend you'll getcher feelings hurt at some point.
I have so seldom laughed out loud at a show so much. Give it a chance, watch like 3 or 4. (no kids please.) You'll thank me.

or not...

p.s. my word verify was ensta. That is a gangsta Ent , right?