Thanks to money hungry fools Jay Leno, and NBC President Jeff Zucker, Conan O'Brien will officially be leaving The Tonight Show this Friday, just seven months after he started. O'Brien will be given $32 Million dollars to leave, while his executive producer will get $4 Million, and his writers will divide what is left of the $45 Million deal; and Conan won't be able to return to TV for eight months afterwards. Thus bringing an end to the feud that's been lasting for weeks now.
I have to say, I'm pretty upset by this. Conan has long been one of my favorite late night talk show hosts and it was great to finally see him take the helm of NBC's most prestigious program... just SEVEN MONTHS ago. The real culprit here is Jay Leno, who five years ago told the world that he was retiring, and that Conan would be given the reins because he didn't want to cause the controversy that he had when Johnny Carson gave him The Tonight Show, instead of then Late Night host, David Letterman, who has been at CBS ever since the incident.
Turns out 5 years later Jay wasn't ready to leave, and was given his own show, The Jay Leno Show, at 10 PM, which flopped. But because of a contract that stated he was guaranteed a time slot, where as Conan's contract said nothing about securing 11:35, Conan was asked to move his show to 12, to which he promptly denied stating that it not only would ruin what the Tonight Show means, but it would also cut into Jimmy Fallon's (current host of Late Night) and Carson Daily's (host of Last Call) air time. And so, NBC just straight up payed him to leave.
Honestly, I enjoyed watching Leno when I was a kid, but gradually he just became more and more stale, and it was time for him to leave. When he decided to come back for The Jay Leno Show, it already seemed like a stab in Conan's back by returning to late night in a time slot before The Tonight Show, and quite frankly he's just screwed everything up. And if this leaves Jay and Jimmy Fallon as NBC featured talk show hosts, NBC is on its way downward, because sorry, but Fallon just can't seem get people laugh, and he show is generally uninteresting. Jay Leno and Jeff Zucker have shot the network in both feet.
I'll miss you Conan. See you in eight months, probably on Fox, unless Letterman gives you The Late Show...