UPDATE: Conan O’Brien leaving ‘Tonight Show’ next week

January 14th, 2010 // 84 Comments

Conan O’Brien is officially bailing on NBC and ending his stint on The Tonight Show Friday, January 22, according to the New York Post:

“Conan does not currently plan on doing any more new shows after next week,” a source told People magazine’s Web site this afternoon.
If Jan. 22 is O’Brien’s final live broadcast, the show will have ended two weeks before NBC’s scheduled preemption for its 2010 Winter Olympics coverage.
NBC has declined comment.

NBC probably didn’t comment because they’re too busy signing The Tonight Show back over to Jay Leno who, surprise, wasn’t really going to leave the network after all. TMZ reports:

Jay Leno has made a new deal with NBC, which gives him “The Tonight Show” from 11:35 – 12:35 … sources tell TMZ
As we first reported, under the contract Jay had been working under, he was guaranteed the 10 PM hour. By moving him to 11:35, NBC was in breach of his contract and needed to negotiate a new deal. That is now done, sources tell TMZ.

I’m not even going to try to offer a better commentary than Conan’s monologue last night:

“Hosting The Tonight Show has been the fulfillment of a lifelong dream for me – and I just want to say to the kids out there watching: You can do anything you want in life.

Unless Jay Leno wants to do it, too.”

HIYO!

UPDATE: NBC is denying the Leno deal. Of course they are.

UPDATE: Now Conan’s rep is denying Jan. 22 date, so… who the fuck knows?

superficial

  1. They both suck. Bring back Kilborn!!!

  2. Willie Dixon

    I can see not liking Conan. I can not liking Leno. But liking Leno over Conan? Now you know who the NBC schills are on this board continuing Leno’s damage control. Otherwise, when did Jay’s audience learn what a computer is? And, yes, Kilborn was cool when he wasn’t uncomfortable.

    Leno has earned the vitriol by saying he was going to leave after Conan’s announcement then now taking the Tonight Show spot.

  3. Willie Dixon

    Listen to how the crowd goes wild for Conan. That is respect.: http://www.hulu.com/watch/120490/the-tonight-show-with-conan-obrien-wed-jan-13-2010

    Jay Leno could only dream having that kind of response…without a giant Applause sign.

  4. John

    #46/47 … Ummmm. Yeaaaaah… OK. You’re an idiot. Why on earth would you think political party had any bearing whatsoever on people liking Leno? Just such an outright retarded comment.

    Anyway, as for those trashing Conan, while free to do so… I’d wager that few actually are familiar with the man’s resume. How can you hate a guy that was heavily responsible for some of the best years of both SNL and The Simpsons? Alongside guys like Mike Judge and Robert Smigel he paved the way for the success of main stream off beat comedy, pushing a style and genre that led directly into not just the current generation of animated comedies including the entire exiistance of William’s Street and Adult Swim(any guesses as to who the first “guest” on Space Ghost Coast to Coast was?) but virtually every single internet short imaginable.

  5. spicy

    #41… you’re right about his monologues having the same style that he has ALWAYS had… but what is the negative about that?

    change isn’t always a good thing, sometimes its nice to know you can get that type of laughs from him by watching his show.

  6. John

    (#55 here. Just random note so I don’t look like a total idiot, I noticed it looked like I was saying Conan was first on Space Ghost, though it was meant to be an off hand laten ight talk show spoof side question. Not that anyone cares in the least. At all. Except you. You care.)

  7. LarryTopeka

    I hope Fox signs Conan. I will watch conan and even Letterman and pass on Leno. I don’t blame Leno but I won’t support NBC. Bloodsucking maggots

  8. shelley

    i am really gonna miss conan! i loved him on the tonight show and loved him on the late show.. the tonight show was great for me cuz i could fall asleep after watching conan and not have to stay up later than i wanted to.. for some reason i love watching conan live.. i never dvr it.. well untill this week to keep conan going out with a bang for later viewing when i miss him :(

  9. linda

    For all the Conan lovers-if there are so many of you, why did the ratings plummet?? No matter who the lead in was, you should have been tuning in when his show started. I always turned Jay on no matter what I was watching before. NBC is to blame by making this deal in 2004. You dont pull the host of a #1 show. You can call Jay’s fans whatever name you want-they were there and will be again when he takes the show back. Conan is off the wall and if he couldnt pull any better than #4 in the ratings now (after taking over a #1 slot), who is going to hire him? He may land somewhere else, but he had few fans now-he will have even less anywhere else.

  10. linda

    For all the Conan lovers-if there are so many of you, why did the ratings plummet?? No matter who the lead in was, you should have been tuning in when his show started. I always turned Jay on no matter what I was watching before. NBC is to blame by making this deal in 2004. You dont pull the host of a #1 show. You can call Jay’s fans whatever name you want-they were there and will be again when he takes the show back. Conan is off the wall and if he couldnt pull any better than #4 in the ratings now (after taking over a #1 slot), who is going to hire him? He may land somewhere else, but he had few fans now-he will have even less anywhere else.

  11. Matt

    The truth is that Conan’s ratings were stinking.
    Even that snorefest, Nightline, on ABC had higher ratings than Conan’s lame ass show. Conan just can’t admit that Jay Leno had much higher ratings for The Tonight Show.

  12. John

    Do you guys really want a ratings lecture? The system is beyond broken and skewed heavily to older demographics. Virtually everyone of an age to be in Conan’s primary fanbase actually knows how to use those lil’ fancy machines we like to call computers(how did you manage to connect your typewriter to the internet anyway?). Monologue and sketches on Hulu or torrented > Interrupting whatever I’m in the middle of doing(yes, at 11:30) to watch it on television. Add into that the ratings weren’t even that low, and that is just another notch in the FAVOR of Conan(yes, that’s right, complete 180). Due to natural “growing pains”, the loss of many of the older demographic(who find Leno unoffensive while Conan is “potty mouthed”), and just all around settling in his numbers should have been even lower. Do you guys really want to make a case that NBC of all networks doesn’t love to cancel shows prematurely? I mean stop and think who you are defending here.

  13. CONAN WHO?

    #6 and #7 hit it on the bull’s eye, who cares about CoCo or what-ever-his-name is?

    Let’s compare CoCo with VANNA WHITE’S acting talent in movies. SEE MY POINT?

  14. Jason

    By The People: The Election of Barack Obama – Whether or not you are a fan of President Obama, you should still be a part of the mosaic and let your voice be heard http://bit.ly/87SzKB

  15. r4

    I also agree with that NBC totally screwed up and Conan DID get the shaft, but Conan is the one here that acting like a spoiled small baby by refusing to play ball.

  16. EatSh!t

    Who cares? Late night hosting is OLD! You should be drunk and getting ass at that time bitches!

    FUCK YOU!

  17. Spanky McFarker

    Fuck you NBC.

  18. Conan doesn’t feel right as the tonight show frontman.

  19. Conan is Ze Key

    8====JAYLENO==D

  20. linda

    Interesting how all the Conan fans are so vulgar. Perhaps you should do some homework before trashing Jay-NBC didnt want to lose Conan in 2004, so they promised him the Tonight Show. Jay never wanted to retire and was going to jump networks after leaving the Tonight Show. NBC did want that either, so they gave him a primetime show. It was not a surprise that failed, because people dont want the “tonight show” in primetime. But it was a surprise how poorly Conan did. I dont understand the people who say that the lead in ratings were bad for Conan. When Jay was on the tonight show, I dont care what I was watching before that, I used my remote control to change it to him. Are we to believe that Conan fans are too lazy or stupid to turn him on at 11:30??? Jay was number one when he was forced out and will return to number 1 when he takes it back over. The Tonight Show has a certain feel and format to it, Conan was not a good fit.

  21. linda

    Interesting how all the Conan fans are so vulgar. Perhaps you should do some homework before trashing Jay-NBC didnt want to lose Conan in 2004, so they promised him the Tonight Show. Jay never wanted to retire and was going to jump networks after leaving the Tonight Show. NBC did want that either, so they gave him a primetime show. It was not a surprise that failed, because people dont want the “tonight show” in primetime. But it was a surprise how poorly Conan did. I dont understand the people who say that the lead in ratings were bad for Conan. When Jay was on the tonight show, I dont care what I was watching before that, I used my remote control to change it to him. Are we to believe that Conan fans are too lazy or stupid to turn him on at 11:30??? Jay was number one when he was forced out and will return to number 1 when he takes it back over. The Tonight Show has a certain feel and format to it, Conan was not a good fit.

  22. bete noir

    So Conan fans watch him via the Internet? Then why, when you heard his ratings were low, didn’t you tune in via the tube? You know what the deal breaker was? Conan coming in behind Nightline. NIGHTLINE! It doesn’t get any worse than that. Conan is just NOT FUNNY. There are better jokes at my kids’ cafeteria table.

  23. bete noir

    And did you all miss the part about him not being a good interviewer? He had on the star of the Chimpmunks movie and didn’t even know the guy wasn’t one of the animated characters, that he was IN the movie. Pathetic. There’s no excuse for a host not doing their homework. Conan thinks it’s ALL about him. All he wants to do is stupid unfunny, juvenile schitck.

  24. Most of us here at Dipstix, are fans of Conando! ;-)

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  27. Anita Ford

    I liked Conan, but the material he did on his old show. He is not Jay Leno, and the people who watched Leno were another audience. Since I am over 50, I liked Jay Leno too and all his funny skits. However, I stayed up late too, because I laughed more at Conan and his naughty stuff. The reason he was not successful on the Tonight Show is because he couldn’t use that naughty stuff on the Tonight Show time slot and audience. I liked Conan, but he needs more freedome to be himself and that is not the Tonight Show. Hang in there, Conan, I will watch you wherever you go, but don’t give up…

  28. I liked Conan, but the material he did on his old show. He is not Jay Leno, and the people who watched Leno were another audience. Since I am over 50, I liked Jay Leno too and all his funny skits. However, I stayed up late too, because I laughed more at Conan and his naughty stuff. The reason he was not successful on the Tonight Show is because he couldn’t use that naughty stuff on the Tonight Show time slot and audience. I liked Conan, but he needs more freedome to be himself and that is not the Tonight Show. Hang in there, Conan, I will watch you wherever you go, but don’t give up…

  29. PsyKo

    this is so pathetic and sad…

    team conan here.

  30. John, Newport Beach

    The dude has been a mugging over-acting hack from day one.
    I smelled nepotism and wondered who he slept with or who’d sleep with him?
    How did such a loser get the job? Then I remembered, how did Bush get elected twice? There wasn’t anyone else to take the job. Good riddens, get lost, your 15 minutes are up.

  31. Great Scott

    Not a Leno or Dave fan; Craig Ferguson is the only true comedic host.

  32. The Truth

    You young people need to GET LOST!

  33. I agree with most of the pros of the article, great research, well keep in touch. John

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