Leno vs Conan

So I'm sure by now there's no shortage of places you could go to watch this debacle. For the last month or so, people have been lining up on either side of the aisle in the great Leno vs O'Brien battle. It seems that we as a culture place more value on things like this and remain glued to it that we do on real issues that affect real people in their real lives. But, what the hell, why not play along?

The roots behind all this really got started about 5 years back. A little blurb Leno let loose on The Tonight Show saying that in 2009 Conan O'Brien would take over when Jay retired. It had to happen at some point, right? Leno couldn't keep it up forever, right? Well sure enough about 7 months ago it actually happened. Only it didn't happen quite how everyone expected. Sure, Conan got the 11:35 show, but for whatever reason Leno decided he didn't want to retire after all. So NBC decided to do some shuffling and moved Leno to the 10pm time slot 5 nights a week. A strange move for a network that should be thriving on actual prime time entertainment. Maybe they just didn't have anything else to put there. The world may never know.

Anyway, fast forward to the last week or so where it became apparent that NBC completely fucked up with this whole Leno in prime time experiment. I've watched the show on and off over the last 7 months and to me, it's just not the same. Leno was way funnier in the 11:35 slot for some reason. Maybe the writers in the 10pm slot are all slobbering morons. Whatever it is, the show just lays there. The monologue is too short. The jokes aren't funny. There's too much liberal politics injected into things. The bits are lame, the skits even lamer. His only redeeming segment left is Headlines, because how could they screw that up, right?

I have no idea how bad Conan has gotten of late, I quit watching him when he was still hosting Late Night back in his first season. All of the things I just said suck about Leno's current show you can take and magnify 10-fold with Conan's show. If there's humor in any of it, I can't find it. He supposedly appeals to the younger crowd, but everyone I worked with over the last 5 years in that age group thinks the guy is lame too. I know only a handful of people in general who watch him and think he's funny.

So with all that in mind, is it any wonder both shows are suffering badly in the ratings? David Letterman is the only one coming out ahead in all this. His ratings skyrocketed. Too bad he's over on CBS though. How pathetic do you need to be to fail against Letterman? A man who isn't funny, just downright mean.

The big solution appears all but final at this point. NBC is moving Jay Leno back to 11:35 as host of The Tonight Show. Conan is getting a $40 million boot off the network and the right to compete against Leno out of the gate. God knows who's going to be hosting Late Night, but whoever it is, it doesn't matter. Nobody watches it anymore anyway. It's going to take anywhere from 6 to 12 months for Conan to find a new home and get back on the air. Word has it Fox wants him, and as sad as Conan is as a comedian, his show would be a major improvement compared to the junk reality shows the Fox network runs. Not the Fox News channel either, amazing how many people think that's the same as the normal Fox network.

Anyway, there you go. Some cheap tabloid gossip to stir things up as the rest of the world burns. For the record, Leno rocks. I think he'll recover nicely once back in his old slot where he belongs.
"It is pointless to resist, my son." -- Darth Vader
"Resistance is futile." -- The Borg
"Mother's coming for me in the dragon ships. I don't like these itchy clothes, but I have to wear them or it frightens the fish." -- Thurindil

Well. I guess that's that then.

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Posted on Jan 17, 2010 7:13 pm by Samson in: | 3 comment(s) [Closed]
Two rants in one day? *gasp* Don't you have better things to do like testing? *wink wink*

Personally, I cannot stand either Leno, Conan or Letterman. Give me the old days of The Tonight Show with the legendary Johnny Carson any day. Now he was funny.

Oh, a slave driver eh? I was testing and took a break. Things are going pretty well so far. I've had to adjust some things that refused to work like I wanted, but nothing major.

I have to say I never really paid a lot of attention to The Tonight Show while Carson was there, but it is sort of ironic in all this that when he retired he wanted Letterman to take over. I don't know all the dirty tabloid details but supposedly Leno muscled his way past him and convinced NBC to take him instead. I've always appreciated Leno's humor. He's not always funny, but he's not a complete prick like Letterman and isn't utterly lame like Conan.

Time will tell. Once the dust settles and everyone is where they belong, I guess the ratings will decide who the king of late night is.

I'm with Hanaisse on this particular debate. Carson was the undisputed late night king and none of the networks have come close to finding his equal yet. But of the three in question, I agree that there's no contest, Leno's the only choice amongst them. But, with that out of the way, I also agree that America seems to be in a sad state when this sort of nonsense over-rides the outrage at Obama throwing yet more tax dollars away, this time in aid/relief to Haiti ..a country of roughly 10 million people who fought against Americans on more than one occasion in the past 100 years.. that Obama wants to send, what was it, $100,000,000 in aid because there may have been as many as 200,000 killed.. that means Obama feels a dead Haitian's worth roughly $5,000, doesn't it? Meanwhile, what's he doing to help the fine folks who elected him? Let alone the rest of us?

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