Monday, January 18, 2010

Usurped: The Tale of Conan O'Brien

"Good fans of things that are funny! I have just arrived from 30 Rock where, six days ago, Conan O'Brien said he would not host the Tonight Show at 12:05am causing the people to take to the streets! They are starving, their children are dying but they are holding firm and we must support them.

What is happening at 30 Rock is happening everywhere. Let us at last make this the land of opportunity for all people who are tapped to host the Tonight Show, not just Jay Leno. The land of opportunity for Conan and his impish friend, Andy. We cannot rest!"

Emma Goldman couldn't have said it better.

Unless you've been living under a rock or in Haiti, you have no doubt been following the Late Night drama which has been ensuing. To get to the root of the matter, we whisk you away in the Greatness Time Machine to 2004 where a then unfunny Jay Leno made a statement.

Fast forward to June 1, 2009 when Jay Leno begrudgingly hands over the mantle to it's rightful heir, Conan O'Brien. To a appease a peeved and still unfunny Leno & and because they're too cheap to produce a real primetime program, NBC decides to give Leno a 10pm primetime slot for the aptly named, Jay Leno Show.

Viewers got mad that Leno was not funny and missed enjoying fine, fine programs like ER and Law & Order and such and so they turned off their TV's and instead enjoyed some quality family time which they had been deeply lacking. Well, then the local NBC affiliates realize that they've been sold a lemon and that Leno was only funny at 11:30 when the old Midewestern folk who actually watched his show were either drunk or sleepy, accounting for the lapse in taste. An alert public flatly rejected Leno and the NBC brass went doody in their panties.

So what to do? Quick fix. Cancel the crap Leno show. Bump him back to 11:35pm for a 30 minute gig and bump Conan back to 12:05am as head of the mis-monikered Tonight Show, Jimmy Fallon goes to 1:00am and Carson Daly is bumped to host of Telemundo's hit show, Noticias del Noche!

Conan politely told them to go fuck themselves. Jeffrey Zucker, turned an interesting reddish-purple and threatened to put Conan on ice for the duration of his contract because, "hey, we said you could host the Tonight Show but we didn't say when you could host the Tonight Show."

As of tonight it looks as though NBC will end up buying out Conan to the tune of $30 - 40M with the caveat that he may not ever speak ill of the network. Fallon will stay in his awkward 12:35am slot, but Carson Daly will still be headed to Telemundo.

So this, it seems, is the end of the saga. But what's to become of this drama's key players? Leno is a confirmed dick and will go back to creating cringe-able courtesy laughter at 11:35pm. Zucker will be canned for making such a mess of this when Comcast takes over. But the big question to the throngs outside 30 Rock, what's to happen to Conan? I report, you decide!

The results will be forwarded to Conan and his agents at WME, so that he can plan accordingly. Thank you for your assistance.


In the vein of exciting new offerings, you may want to check out friend of Greatness, Colin Donnell's new song, "City Lights". Click, Listen, Swoon, etc.


Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

I hope they put Leno back on The Tonight Show and it bombs. That wouldbe most excellent. "Haiti under a rock"? Hmm, maybe too soon.


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