Pop culture, entertainment & all things Fresno

Team Leno or Team Conan?

By now you all probably know that Jay Leno is going back to “The Tonight Show” and Conan O’Brien is going … well, nobody is quite sure yet. Tell ya the truth, I’m more interested in what’s happened in result.

Like how Conan put his Tonight Show set up for sale on Craigslist. Or Jimmy Kimmel’s appearance on Leno last night, where he pretty much clowned Jay up and down his “10 at 10″ segment. Here’s a video. Question five was my favorite.

It makes me wonder — where are these supposed Jay Leno fans? I don’t know a single person who watches his 10 p.m. show every night. Maybe this is the wrong place to ask this, because the Internet seems so heavily Team Conan.

Either way, with “The Jay Leno Show” soon to R.I.P., I think that whole making-fun-of-Fresno thing shouldn’t bother anybody here anymore. Heck, I dunno why somebody Fresno hasn’t made a video mocking Leno yet. “Fresno: At least we didn’t suck in prime time and go ask for our old job back.”

[video source]

Responses to "Team Leno or Team Conan?"

Tone says:


Heather says:

I can’t believe how much time I’ve spent reading/thinking about this. I don’t even watch late night TV.

Mike Oz says:

Yeah, I’m actually far more likely to watch Stewart and Colbert than any of the network guys. But I did very much enjoy Kimmel’s answers last night.

mdub420 says:

Team LOpez!!!

Pook says:

It seems like most of the comedy world is fairly pissed at Leno. Even Patton Oswalt has stated in interviews that Leno is doing it for money he won’t even be able to spend in his lifetime.

And overally, it seems more than a stab in the back. Not just for trying to give away the Tonight Show again out from under Conan. But to try and hide the fact by “rebranding” the shows. Essentially just moving the names to later shows, at least in the eyes of the folks who watch that block of TV each night.

Having now worked on my own creative projects, I can understand why Conan would be so pissed to essentially have his main creative goal snatched away 7 month later. It would have at least been somewhat honorable to simply fire him. But that would have cost them 60 million. So instead they just shuffle the shows around so they can still keep 2 of their major tv properties within their contracts. Conversely they could have fired Leno, but that would have been 80 million I believe.

One way or another it shows that showbiz is hell and that corporate bosses don’t care one whit about ethics. Not that many other folks understand the concept in this day and age anyway.

I honestly have no idea who actually watches The Jay Leno Show. It’s absolutely horrible.

Conando Forever!

ed says:

that was brutal. and, kimmel shows why i watch his show – consistently funny.

ben says:

im starting to think the reason leno has no online support is because his target audience isnt really online that much. that said, even in the media he is getting little support. i’m still team conan for sure but i think younger people care more and older people just want to turn the tv on at 11:35 and see something funny.

Andy says:

I feel bad for Conan. He got screwed over by NBC.

Will watch him wherever he goes. Hope Leno’s ratings go way down when he comes back.

Jay says:

All of the Leno fans are on Friendster.

Michael says:

I have no respect for Leno. I saw a clip of a monologue from his 10:00 show and he basically bashes Conan. Way to be classy Leno. I hope you go back to your old show and it tanks.

Lisa says:

Thank goodness NBC recognized their mistake and are correcting it. They never should have moved a successful show with Jay Leno from 11:35 and moved it to prime time to make room for Conan. It’s torture trying to watch Conan’s show. I don’t see how anyone can find 90% of what he does even slightly amusing. Letterman is just as bad or worse. I was forced to look for sitcoms or old movies. Welcome back Jay!! I’m sure that in no time the ratings will be as high as they were when you left. I’ll be watching. I feel no sympathy for Conan. He could have moved to 12:05, but refused. He just wants to keep taking shots at his employer. He’ll have plenty of money, but it can’t buy him class.

Gilly says:

My thoughts: Jay Leno choose to move to different time slot. Now take the hit, find something else to do. Pay the price of your choice everybody else has to why not him. Enough already,back out gracefully.

Rosie says:


I remember years ago me and my brother staying up until the wee hours of the morning to watch Conan. He’s awesome!!! HEELARIOUS!!!-

George (Duke) says:

LETS SEE…When Leno was on the Tonight Show he was number one with 6 million viewers average per night…then he went 5 days a week at 10 pm and average 5.6 million people….he also made a lot of money for NBC at 10pm because unlike dramas and other shows…it does not cost alot to produce. LENO is funnier…Johnny Carson loved him…(some of the funniest shows ever on LETTERMAN was when LENO was his guest)…….too much of Conans humor is totally out there…dont get me wrong I think he is funny, but some of this stuff like masterbating bear, and in the year…whatever is really dumb….Jay has lots I like…99 cents store stuff, JAYWALKING to show the idiots out there that may be our future teachers…his monologues are always funny and timely…he is on 5 days a week and then goes to Vegas or Hermosa Beach comedy club and works weekends…JAY LENO all the way….dont feel sorry for CONAN who had 2 million viewers…His contract will net him $30-40 million bucks…and he does not have to do anything…Fox will probably pick him up within a year or so anyway

DUKE says:

Angel…5 million people every night…on 10pm or 11:35pm…. He was number one when he was on the TONIGHT SHOW….Letterman sleeps with his staff and is now number one…go figure…Jay is loyal to his wife Mavis and they have been married a long long time…get your facts straight.

DUKE says:

GILLY…he did not CHOSE to go to 10pm…he was told by NBC it was what they were going to do…When Leno left “Tonight,” it was clear he was doing so reluctantly. He played along in 2004 when it was announced. Then, last spring when he agreed to do a prime-time show, he spit the company line that people wanted comedy at 10 p.m. rather than drama, bikinis and murder.

To Leno’s credit, at least publicly, he has been gracious. He has repeatedly said he didn’t want O’Brien to go through what he did when NBC chose him over Letterman for the “Tonight Show” job.

That was before the new O’Brien and Leno shows both failed.

Jay did a weak version of “Tonight” in prime time, while O’Brien, in moving to “Tonight,” lost the edge that made him successful on “Late Night.”

JAY LENOs words says:

Here is what Leno said on the “Jay Leno Show,” in full:

I thought maybe I should address this. At least give you my view of what has been going on here at NBC.

Oh, let’s start in 2004 — 2004, I’m sitting in my office, an NBC executive comes in and says to me, “Listen, Conan O’Brien has gotten offers from other networks. We don’t want him to go, so we’re going to give him ‘The Tonight Show.’ “ I said, “Well, I’ve been number one for 12 years.� They said, “We know that, but we don’t think you can sustain that.� I said, “OK. How about until I fall to number two, then you fire me?� “No, we made this decision.� I said, “That’s fine.�

Don’t blame Conan O’Brien. Nice guy, good family guy, great guy. He and I have talked and not a problem since then. That’s what managers and people do, they try to get something for their clients. I said, “I’ll retire just to avoid what happened the last time.� OK.

So time goes by, and we stay number one up until the day we leave. We hand — [applause] — no, no. OK, but I’m leaving before my contract is out. About six to eight months early. So before I could go anywhere else, it would be at least a year or 18 months before I could go and do a show somewhere else.

I said to NBC, “Would you release me from my contract?� They said, “We want to keep you here.� OK.

“What are your ideas?� They said, “How about prime time?� I said, “That will never work.� “No, no, we want to put you on at 10. We have done focus groups. People will love you at 10.� . . . Four months go by, we don’t make it. Meanwhile, Conan’s show during the summer — we’re not on — was not doing well. The great hope was that we would help him. Well, we didn’t help him any. OK.

They come and go, “This show isn’t working. We want to let you go.� “Can you let me out of my contract?� “No, you’re still a valuable asset to this company.� How valuable can I be? You fired me twice. How valuable can I be? OK.

So then, the affiliates are not happy. The affiliates are the ones that own the TV stations. They’re the ones that sort of make the decisions. “They’re not happy with your performance, and Conan is not doing well at 11:30.� I said, “What’s your idea?� They said, “Well, look, how about you do a half-hour show at 11:30?� Now, where I come from, when your boss gives you a job and you don’t do it well — I think we did a good job here, but we didn’t get the ratings, so you get humbled. I said, “OK, I’m not crazy about doing a half-hour, but OK. What do you want to do with Conan?� “We’ll put him on at midnight, or 12:05, keeps ‘The Tonight Show’ does all that, he gets the whole hour.� I said, “OK. You think Conan will go for that?� “Yes, yes. [Laughter.] Almost guarantee you.� I said OK. Shake hands, that’s it. I don’t have a manager, I don’t have an agent, that’s my handshake deal.

Next thing, I see Conan . . . saying he doesn’t want to do that. They come back to me and they say, “If he decides to walk and doesn’t want to do it, do you want the show back?� I go, “Yeah, I’ll take the show back. If that’s what he wants to do. This way, we keep our people working, fine.�

So that’s pretty much where we are. It looks like we might be back at 11:30, I’m not sure. I don’t know. [Applause.] I don’t know. But through all of this — through all of this, Conan O’Brien has been a gentleman. He’s a good guy. I have no animosity towards him.

This is all business. If you don’t get the ratings, they take you off the air . . . You can do almost anything. You get ratings, they keep you. I don’t get ratings he wants. That was NBC’s solution. It didn’t work, so we might have an answer for you tomorrow.

So, we’ll see. That’s basically where it is.