MediaFile

Laugh graph: Conan and the ratings race

The debut of Conan on TBS won its time slot against more established late-night comedy shows. But can the former Tonight Show host keep up the momentum? Reuters is keeping daily track of how O’Brien performs against his rivals; tune in every day for an update.

Related stories:
Conan O’Brien’s new show draws fans, not critics
Conan O’Brien returns to TV in downsized role
“War for Late Night” lifts lid on NBC turmoil

from DealZone:

Comcast the Barbarian?

Conan O'Brien could well be headed to Fox after making it clear to NBC that he will not go graciously into the later night. But a channel-changing question that is making the rounds has more to do with what the drama unfolding between O'Brien and former Tonight Show host Jay Leno says about NBC and its agreed joint venture with Comcast. If nothing else, the lack of replacement programming for the slot Leno is vacating, and the purported profitability NBC still enjoyed by having a cheaper, single-star variety show in a traditionally pricey prime-time slot, raise an obvious question -- why the rush?

John Hudson at the AtlanticWire does a nice job of collecting some thoughts on pressure that was probably building from Comcast, from angry affiliates who wanted Leno and his show's crummy ratings out of that vital pre-news slot, to improving PR.

"Though NBC Universal Chairman Jeff Gaspin said the Comcast deal has nothing to do with the decision, pundits say Gaspin has 'every incentive to show improvement' before his new bosses at Comcast takeover," Hudson says.

Conan O’Brien plans to chip away at Intel — again

Who says lightning never strikes twice? Conan O’Brien, famous for finding humor in the mundane, is set to revisit Intel Corp on Thursday’s “The Tonight Show” — two years after the talk-show host devised a memorable 2007 skit spoofing the Silicon Valley chipmaker.

An Intel spokeswoman declined to talk about the details but said the upcoming segment was part of a broader Intel sponsorship of O’Brien’s new show on NBC. O’Brien took over the Burbank, California-based show from Jay Leno on June 1.

Financial details of the sponsorship weren’t disclosed by Intel, which noted that “this partnership leverages O’Brien’s unique ability to humorously convey to his viewers Intel’s unique personality, cutting-edge technology and futuristic innovations.”