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Should Jay or Conan host the “Tonight Show”?

Asked at Checkers Food Store, 23rd and Louisiana streets on January 16, 2010

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Photo of Mike Ramirez

“Conan. He’s funnier, hipper and I like his hair.”

Photo of Sarah Hoffman

“It should be Jay; he’s been there longer. He needs to go back to the old time slot.”

Photo of Penny Schau

“I just enjoy Conan better. I think he’s a lot funnier.”

Photo of Mabel Snow Bird

“Jay. He’s a lot funnier and I’ve been watching his late-night show for a while.”


jonas_opines 8 years, 1 month ago

Not only should Jay not host, he should also be exiled from TV, and maybe tossed into a volcano while we're at it.

Seriously, as unfunny as you can possibly get. The only thing that makes listening to a monologue by him remotely bearable is mentally superimposing Bill Hicks's mocking of him on top of his own voice.

Maddy Griffin 8 years, 1 month ago

I agree Jonas, I never thought Leno was funny. That's why I watch Dave. Conan should take over and move Jimmy up.

John Hamm 8 years, 1 month ago

Neither are anywhere near Dave's caliber.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 8 years, 1 month ago

I hardly ever watch either, but despite Conan's penchant for being weird for weird's sake, I find him much funnier than Leno, who I really don't find funny at all.

brujablanco 8 years, 1 month ago

You are right, prospector. If I had to chose - Leno would go, he's boring.

BrianR 8 years, 1 month ago

Given the choices, definitely Conan. I do miss Johnny though.

Mandie Eutsler 8 years, 1 month ago

Niether one should host. There are way too many channels anymore and noone is watching. I'd rather watch family guy reruns on adult swim. Or any documentary on history, discovery, science channel, and the list goes on and on. Late night talk shows are outdated!!!

50YearResident 8 years, 1 month ago

Leno is out. He ran the course and used up his charm. Let Conan have it for better or worse, in richness and wealth, until "death do the show part".

farmgal 8 years, 1 month ago

cheeseburger (Anonymous) says… "I'll side with the polls. Jay was #1 in the 10:30 slot with the Tonight Show, and ratings fell significantly when Conan took over. Look for Jay to regain the #1 position when NBC makes the change."

it's not all black and white. many other factors played in, so to take such a simplistic view shows a lack of depth to your thinking.

leno sucks--has for years--bland, warmed over humor

conan is a comedic genius, imo.

when you only have an antennae & no cable tv, my choices are limited. i will really miss conan if he goes, which looks like is going to happen. i will never watch leno again--he's a self-centered moron. he's a prime example of how mediocrity is celebrated and rewarded in life.

GardenMomma 8 years, 1 month ago

Craig Ferguson is my new favorite. I liked Jay Leno when he was on (mostly his Headlines bit), but now he left - his choice.

I think Conan's getting the shaft. Jay Leno should just retire. He passed the torch and NBC are idiots to give the Tonight Show to Conan and then to take it back. How rude to give and then take away.

I hope Conan is back on somewhere soon and kicks the Tonight Show's butt!

Dave Letterman is not funny any more. Sometimes his top ten list is funny, but mostly he seems trite, bitter, and jaded nowadays.

RoeDapple 8 years, 1 month ago

I just set my machine to record all the old "Have Gun, Will Travel" episodes. At first I was amazed I ever liked them as a child. Now I'm amazed that I'm starting to like them again...

Byrne 8 years, 1 month ago

Problem is, cheeseburger, is that Leno had a lead-in of a proper prime-time schedule, while Conan had a lead-in of the Leno experiment, whose rating slump precipitated this whole thing by being so low the local affiliates rebelled to protect their news numbers.

Also, if you look at the last time the Tonight Show seat changed hands, ratings for the show were low in the first year or so until the Hugh Grant interview boosted Leno's ratings, and that was with the benefit of NBC having much better ratings than it does now.

That's not opinion, that's just looking at the numbers.

gphawk89 8 years, 1 month ago

"It stopped being the Tonight Show when Johnny retired"

True. I stopped watching the Tonight Show soon after Johnny retired. No one can take Johnny's place.

Frederic Gutknecht IV 8 years, 1 month ago

I don't have a TV, but I like the acerbic nature of parasitic hosts on the high-fructose tube. The idiotic drone of socially fellatical, doofusoidal hominids drives me to batty dread in and of, our future, night and day.

The longer one resides within any system, the more one becomes the mouth of its hell...leading the rest to doom. Go for the new or newer always. It is the way of we, the seekers of what we cannot know.

Go with, then fire, the latest craze in our desire to burn the world down into the melted pot of our condescension.

Escapee 8 years, 1 month ago

Carson was the last 'Tonight Show' host, agreed. And Leno should just plain know better.... It's time to go and give somebody else the opportunity he was gifted with. NBC execs must be the most lame, crack headed, spineless creatures on earth not to see how simple this should have been.... Jay got a chance, he blew it, he's gone. Next.

jumpin_catfish 8 years, 1 month ago

Well it should be, drum please............... Dennis Miller!

diplomacy205 8 years, 1 month ago

Does anyone actually watch these shows?

yankeevet 8 years, 1 month ago

JAY LENO ONLY; letterman and conan really suck.........and always will...................

looza 8 years, 1 month ago

Jay! I would rather watch a t-u-r-d float in the toilet then watch Conan.

Kat Christian 8 years, 1 month ago

Neither one is funny to me. I think David Letterman should or better yet Craig Ferguson - now he's funny and I love how he interviews his guests.

Jeff Cuttell 8 years, 1 month ago

Conan needs a fair shot at this. Dave is great. But, he will never go back to NBC after they picked Leno over him. Dave and Conan are much funnier than Jay ever was. I don't know what people ever saw in him anyway.

Jeff Cuttell 8 years, 1 month ago

Maybe they could put Jay on closed circuit TV in all of the nursing homes and he can have guests like Don Rickles and other has beens to keep the excitement going for the elderly.

igby 8 years, 1 month ago

Neither, they both suck!

We want Arsenial Hall, back!

gccs14r 8 years, 1 month ago

Jay is just un-funny. He's the Lawrence Welk of late night. I'd rather watch paint dry. Conan should get to keep Tonight. Dave will probably retire in a couple of years (maybe at the end of this contract) and Craig will move up into his time slot. Then Craig and Conan could go at it again like they used to, and it'd be a fair fight. Dumping Conan and putting Jay back into Tonight may give NBC some ratings in the short term, but Craig will stomp a mudhole in Jay if they're opposite each other. NBC is shooting itself in the foot--again.

maxcrabb 8 years, 1 month ago

After watching all you common personalities here on the forums, this article, and your comments, finally explain everything. It all boils down to the late night show of preference.

Mine? Conan. (With Venture Bro's and Harvey Birdman very close behind)

Dan Edwards 8 years, 1 month ago

While Conan has some older fans, I've not encountered a single person under 40 who prefers Jay Leno. Younger viewers are all advertisers care about, which directly determines how much $$ the networks make (an iPhone commercial earns them substantially more money than one for Polygrip).

Jay Leno's ratings will never return to what they were prior to his "retirement". Some of his fans discovered the other late night hosts, others found something on cable to watch, and some kicked the bucket. He may get slightly higher numbers than Conan was getting for the last few months, but they ain't gonna be the 18-49s that's for sure.

NBC is like the titanic, and Jay Leno's just gonna ride her on down. Conan was smart to jump off now.

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