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Don't know about all the politics (and, frankly, don't care) but sorry, not a fan of Conan.

Used to watch Leno occasionally (say, a couple of times a month), have only watched his new show once. Didn't like it, preferred his old show.

Whatever happens between the two will have no effect on my late night TV watching.

FWIW, not a fan of Letterman, either.
 

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Everyone has their opinion, as do I, but for the record, I am a Leno fan.

When it was noted in a thread here on ehMac that he would be hosting the Tonight Show many years ago now, I predicted that Conan would fail. Turns out I was right.

Conan does not have the broad appeal for the Tonight Show audience. I find him immature and his stupid tricks and gags routine, well, make me gag.

No one will ever replace Johnny Carson, but Leno at least continued that broad appeal that Carson had. Conan narrowed down that appeal to a sliver and has such a niche following that he cannot carry the Tonight Show or match its previous ratings.

And it's all about the ratings, make no mistake:

NBC executive Dick Ebersol trashed Conan O'Brien in a provocative interview with the New York Times' Bill Carter, calling Conan an "astounding failure" and saying his jokes about Jay Leno have been "chicken-hearted and gutless."

Ebersol, the chairman of NBC Universal Sports and NBC's Olympics guru, lit up on Conan just after his boss, NBC Universal President Jeff Zucker, reportedly threatened to keep Conan off the air for 3.5 years.

Ebersol described Conan's jokes about Leno as "chicken-hearted and gutless to blame a guy you couldn't beat in the ratings."

He added, "what this is really all about is an astounding failure by Conan."

Ebersol also said Conan rejected his and the network's advice to make his show friendlier to middle America.
NBC Executive Dick Ebersol Trashes Conan

I could not have put it any better myself when he said, "make his show friendlier to middle America".

He didn't and you may as well stick a fork in Conan. He's done.

I might add that when Conan replaced Letterman, I followed Letterman and turned Conan off then too.
 

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If I had to pick between the two, it'd have to be Leno. I cannot stand Conan. He is genuinely not funny. He should've stuck to writing for The Simpsons, something he was actually good at.

I am a Letterman fan.
 

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Hold on there SINC. Don't try to rewrite this to fit into your bias: This is about Leno and his less than stellar performance, not Conan. Leno's show has failed miserably and NBC has tried (and failed) to find a solution so they can have their cake and eat it too. They thought they could simply shift Leno (and everyone who follows after) back an hour or so.

The affiliates have not complained about Conan--they set this whole thing into motion because of Leno.

The ONLY reason why execs are crapping on Conan is because he's drawn a line in the sand up and is willing to walk away from such moronic handling of a network, not to mention a historic TV show. Like him or not, at least Conan has the testicular fortitude to call it like it is.

NBC is bleeding cash right now and I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if executive's heads start rolling in the coming weeks.
 

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For the record:

* Jay Leno, never funny.
* Conan, sometimes funny.
* David Letterman, used to be funny.
 

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Hold on there SINC. Don't try to rewrite this to fit into your bias: This is about Leno and his less than stellar performance, not Conan.
Yeah sure, right you are. I rewrote nothing and I stated I was Leno fan right up front.

Perhaps you missed reading this, did you?

NBC executive Dick Ebersol trashed Conan O'Brien in a provocative interview with the New York Times' Bill Carter, calling Conan an "astounding failure" and saying his jokes about Jay Leno have been "chicken-hearted and gutless."

Ebersol, the chairman of NBC Universal Sports and NBC's Olympics guru, lit up on Conan just after his boss, NBC Universal President Jeff Zucker, reportedly threatened to keep Conan off the air for 3.5 years.

Ebersol described Conan's jokes about Leno as "chicken-hearted and gutless to blame a guy you couldn't beat in the ratings."

He added, "what this is really all about is an astounding failure by Conan."

Ebersol also said Conan rejected his and the network's advice to make his show friendlier to middle America.
NBC now realizes it made a huge mistake taking a gamble on Conan hosting the Tonight Show and are moving to correct it.

And for the record, anyone who doesn't realize that Leno's new show sucked is naive. He will go back to what he did best and the ratings showed that for over a decade.

Conan's ratings couldn't even beat Letterman. :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Not talking about who's more funny, who enjoys who more... this is about principle, of which NBC and Leno have none.
 

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Not talking about who's more funny, who enjoys who more... this is about principle, of which NBC and Leno have none.
When your used to be top rated show goes into the dumper, you do what you gotta do. Conan's ratings couldn't match Leno's nor even beat Letterman, thus the need for change sooner than later.
 

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Let’s review, network TV executives attempt “cheap” talk show TV during prime time;

star takes on bold new adventure in television hosting 10PM talk show;

the network is making money on this bold new adventure, the show is not delivering audience for local TV news programming for network affiliates, they file grievance;

to resolve this grievance the network executives announce the plan to abolish bold new adventure in network programming and have the senior host bump the junior host and everyone will revert to former job;

junior host says no and files his own grievance, and everyone gets all worked up, media storm ensues and people are to take sides in a dispute.

To recap a bunch of greedy bastards can’t get enough money and regular people are suppose to personally invest into this tragedy, meanwhile, Haiti can’t muster enough electricity to run a TV.
 

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Sinc, I agree with Manny ..... NBC's poor performance and insane Olympic bid is bankrupting them, so they created the Leno Show on the cheap and it showed .... an early Tonight Show. Personally I like Leno's show and can always get a laugh ... no so with Conan, but I'm not a hip kid of guy, and many of Letterman's and Conan's fans are .... the very late night crowd. Leno wasn't given enough time to get his act together and neither was Conan.

Remember Leno was considered to get the axe in his early Tonight Show days .... NBC thought Leno would be a draw and lead into the news then Conan. It didn't happen because the network didn't think it through. Leno's flop may also be the death knell for the Tonight Show.... and maybe it's about time.
 

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About principle? Leno and Conan are employees whose job descripions are being reshuffled because the company isn't making enough money. One of them is going to be let go. Just typical HR.
 

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NBC is trying to blame Conan for "not appealing to middle america"?

What did they expect? How many years has he been doing the late show prior to the tonight show on THEIR network?

Maybe they should have actually WATCHED his show if there was concern his humor wasn't watered down enough for mass appeal BEFORE giving him the tonight show.

NBC is a joke. The fact that they're trying to spin the blame on to Conan is disgusting. I kind of feel bad for Leno since he may just be towing the company line, and all he wants to do is a show.
 

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I think that something that was said earlier bears repeating, because many people are missing it.

The NBC Affiliates have no complaints about Conan. They were upset because the new 10 p.m. Leno show was not giving them the lead-in that they were used to. They were bleeding viewers to the other networks.

So if the 11 p.m. news on NBC affiliates is suffering, do you think that viewers are magically switching back to NBC at 11:35? Of course they aren't. So not only is the NBC 10 p.m. mistake costing viewers for the 11 p.m. news, it is costing viewers for The Tonight Show as well. So many of these complaints about Conan having poor ratings could be blamed on the domino effect of the 10 p.m. mistake.

I'm not a fan of either Leno or Conan although I might watch if there is a guest that interests me. I'm a Letterman fan, have been since I first watched his short-lived daytime show back in 1980.

To me, this is NBC's fault. They were trying to protect themselves 6 years ago when they made the announcement that Conan was taking over The Tonight Show. That announcement was made strictly to prevent them from losing Conan who was gaining in popularity.

In the opinion of many, NBC screwed up 18 years ago when they gave The Tonight Show to Leno instead of Letterman. Can you imagine how successful Letterman would have been with that show? He jumped to a competing network who at the time was doing horribly. They had virtually no history in late night. And he made a success out of both his show and the Late Late Show that was created to follow his.

Johnny Carson never returned to The Tonight Show. He did make a couple of very brief appearances on Late Night with David Letterman. To me, that speaks volumes about who he thought was the person who should have been his replacement.

Many people forget that Leno did horribly in the ratings during his first few months. There were plenty of discussions about taking the show away from him. It was only when he got the Hugh Grant interview that things began to turn around.

I've never thought that Leno was strong enough to host The Tonight Show. Regardless, NBC is screwing around with one of the most important franchises in television history. The Tonight Show doesn't start at 12:05 and it certainly deserves much better than what it is getting right now.
 

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...NBC is a joke. The fact that they're trying to spin the blame on to Conan is disgusting. I kind of feel bad for Leno since he may just be towing the company line, and all he wants to do is a show.
Actually Jay stated as recently as last night if NBC doesn't want him they can just release him from the rest of his contract. I think there are only about 4 months left on the contract but there is probably a no-compete clause that extends for an additional year. It would be the latter that Jay was trying to get out from under.

Beyond that I never watched either of them very much, at my age sleep is a bigger priority. Jay's program in prime time was a blunder though. Truth is unless there is a guest you want to see and you actually know there is a guest you want to see, you probably won't watch.
 

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Totally agree with the Mayor here. Especially if you also consider how Leno out-maneuvered Letterman to replace Carson. (There were reports, never denied, that Leno hid in a closet to eavesdrop.)

Not talking about who's more funny, who enjoys who more... this is about principle, of which NBC and Leno have none.
 

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I think it might also be worth mentioning that Leno moved as host from the Tonight Show because he asked to be; he complained that the late time frame was interfering with his family life.

Say what you will about Conan, but NBC picked what they though was the best choice amongst few options to host the show after Leno left. And Leno got his earlier gig because NBC felt he still had marketability.

Had Leno stayed with the Tonight Show (because NBC balked at letting him out) he probably would have left once his contract came up for renewal. NBC tried to accommodate Leno with the earlier half-hour show, thinking he still had marketability.

It was an experiment that failed, obviously. NBC does have time to rehash the Tonight Show with a new host; a new face won't be worried about the time slot when a huge career opportunity like that presents itself.

Of all the late shows, not that I watch them much, I like Craig Ferguson the best. He's a bit off the wall, which is probably a good thing, following Letterman, but his interviews are usually very good. I think he would make a great host for a new Tonight Show, and he seems very versatile. I don't think NBC would have any trouble getting him to do a more mainstream act, which is what I think people expect of the Tonight Show format. It was always the most popular when it didn't stray too far.
 

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When your used to be top rated show goes into the dumper, you do what you gotta do. Conan's ratings couldn't match Leno's nor even beat Letterman, thus the need for change sooner than later.
Uhm... neither could Leno's ratings in the first seven months he was on. Leno was given time to build an audience. Conan was not. And when you switch the host of the Tonight Show, what used to be a television institution, more often than you change your socks, then you are destroying said institution.
 
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