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Entertainment behind the scenes

Conan debacle inspires comic digs galore

January 14, 2010

c3It has become a battle of who can win the most sharp-tongued digs.

Conan O’Brien’s statement released two days ago that he will not be bullied by NBC back into a later timeslot has sparked a competition over which late night host can squeeze in as many quick fire NBC slaps in their opening monologue as possible.

 On Wednesday night O’Brien was more combative in his comedic tone than the previous night, in a message directed to “the kids out there watching: You can do anything you want in life. Unless Jay Leno wants to do it too.”

He also took a direct dig at executives talking about the strong audience “American Idol” receives at rival network Fox – where it is speculated O’Brien may eventually move to: “When they heard that, NBC executives said “That’s not true, there’s no such thing as an audience of 30 million people.”

 But David Letterman predictably has been able to be even more aggressive calling NBC executives “pinheads” and “nitwits” and “twits” after his own tumultuous relationship with the network in the early1990s following more than a decade with the network. Last night his nightly top ten was based on messages left on NBC chief executive Jeff Zucker’s voicemail and he also took potshots at Leno himself.

The jibes delighted the audiences and left others wondering how far can their zingers go? How long will NBC give the hosts ample fodder for laughs at their expense? Can Leno and NBC turn it around?


If NBC were ever interested in turning the ship around, as in salvaging the “Tonight Show” brand, they oughtn’t to have gone and sunk it with an overload of Jay Leno.

Posted by HBC | Report as abusive

If your ratings were better, you could have kept the show. Why blame Leno. It’s not his fault you couldn’t keep up with the ratings that preceded you.

Obviously, you’re not as good at the “Tonight Show” as you thought you would be. I tried watching for two weeks, and lost interest shortly after your monologue.

Posted by pjhandwerk | Report as abusive

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