January 17, 2010

This, I'd Watch

Some suggestions for how Conan O'Brien can raise his ratings, from Conan O'Brien in 1993.

A few thousand hours on television can make you forget how funny somebody is.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer


Harold said...

So you don't like Conan?

Well at least tell me that you don't like Leno.

I love Conan, and I can't stand Leno. He's just awful.

I guess it really is a generational thing. I like Letterman though. He's great. But Leno, man, he's just terrible. He really just needs to go away. Forever. Also, it turns out he's a huge scumbag behind the scenes as well.

Dennis Dale said...

"In the year two-thousaaaaaand..."

Anonymous said...

So Avatar won the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture.

And it's about to become the highest grossing film of all time.

So what's Whiskey's excuse?

Vernunft said...

Harold, come on. Neither show is funny. At all.

Anonymous said...


Conan is the man.

Old people and philosophy dorks don't like him, because well, they're old and they're dorks.

Vernunft said...


Conan is the man.

Old people and philosophy dorks don't like him, because well, they're old and they're dorks."

Never said he wasn't funny. Learn to read!

Anonymous said...

O'Brien strikes me as one of those people who's truly deserving of the label "gifted."

Anonymous said...

Conan is really funny obviously but his humor is not for everyone. Leno is likeable as well- so is Kimmel for that matter. BTW Kimmel was a guest on leno last week and absolutely crushed Leno- Jay had no comebacks for Kimmel's one liners. At one point he even mentioned to stay away from Conan and his show because they have families to support whereas jay is just going to buy another classic car ie., he's barren....ouch!

Conan's actual itmes segment is/was the best ever

Dan in DC

Anonymous said...

tell me these aren't freakin hilarious


Dan in DC

Larry David said...

A respectable level of intelligence, life experience and independent thought leaves most comedy predictable and boring if not downright inane.

Victoria said...

At a time in my life when I used to watch TV, I came across O'Brien, probably in the early '90s. I actually thought some of his routines were witty and that he was clever. I would tune in especially to catch a regular routine he did mocking that actor Chuck Norris. Well, it's amazing how some people wear think rather quickly. I think about two weeks of watching his stupid, bumbling entrance, with that clumsy body of his (I can't believe I thought that was funny), was all I required to wonder if I needed a brain check. I never watched any of those night time guys on a regular basis, rarely remembering that they were on.

It's hard to understand how NBC executives could be so stupid, in their drive to be ahead of the curve, just five years out, would dump that which appeared to be an ongoing sure thing, for a jerk like O'Brien. From what I remember of O'Brien's late-late night stuff, it seems that his show was wrapped around his personal skits, in contrast to those other two guys, who just seemed to sit around and yap with celebrities. I've never understood what anyone sees in this superficial crap.

Anonymous said...

I think Conan is hilarious, as well. The Simpsons enjoyed its glory years under his direction. And his skills at improvisation are second to none, in my opinion--at least in terms of spontaneous and physical wit (see, e.g., when Conan took his show to Canada). I haven't watched him in awhile, but I watch little other than news these days, which is, ya know, the funniest television of all.


Matra said...

Late night television is another example of the astonishing conformism of corporate American media in particular and American society in general.

Talk shows take up virtually all late night network time slots. (In a nation of over 300 million and so much talent how come there is so little variety?). Each talk show begins with a topical monologue by the presenter who usually interacts somewhat with a member of the band or a sidekick. Then they go to a commercial and then, unless they've changed a lot in recent years, they have some kind of semi-scripted skit or something similar. Then after another set of commercials they have mind-numbingly boring chats with celebrities, starting with the guest who has the highest status.

It's the same with the morning shows (though I haven't watched any for 20 years but I'm guessing nothing has changed), the evening news on both networks and local affiliates, pre and post-game shows, along with the style of presentation of sport itself. The network dramas now even have franchises, just like McDonald's! Total homogenisation everywhere.

Even outside of America when a channel joins the 'ESPN family', etc, they set about Americanising the channel no matter how much the locals dislike it. For instance the European ESPNs won't listen to their subscribers when they complain about the 'bottom line'. Get used to it like Americans did is their attitude. (Never mind that a 'bottom line' is obviously unnecessary in countries that have had Ceefax or Antiope for 30 years).

America's big media companies are both conformist and inflexible.

Getting back to Conan, any time I watched him in his 12.30 show he spent a lot of time making faces and waving his arms after each joke. Apparently that's considered edgy* in SWPL land.

* 768,000 google hits for 'conan edgy'

Anonymous said...

Humor, except of the bitter, caustic variety on a very limited range of subjects, does not seem to be a strength of the hbd-sphere.

Glossy said...

I love Conan's show. How many guys who are smart enough to have gone to Harvard could ever be that comfortable as clowns? He's likeable, he's funny - I got sold on him in the early 90s.

By the way, Leno's average-guy stage persona is not coupled with any kind of wholesomeness. His jokes are as vulgar as anybody's, just less funny than Jimmy Kimmel's. If Leno was this boring, but more wholesome, I would have more respect for him. God, that logic could be applied to so many women...

But I digress. Early on the best part of Conan's show was Andy Richter, and I'm glad he was finally brought back recently. Andy doesn't even have to do anything to be funny.

albertosaurus said...

Despite the considerable power of his raw sexuality and mesmerizing intellectual presence


Anonymous said...

I think Conan is hilarious, as well. The Simpsons enjoyed its glory years under his direction.

Good point. The classic Simpsons that everyone knows and loves before the show became really awful in the latter half of the 90s has Conan's imprint. The Simpsons is now unwatchable, of course, and has been for over 10 years.

Anonymous said...

One way Conan could raise his ratings would be by being funny.

Winston Smith said...

Many comments on this issue remind me of a scene from A Bronx Tale:

Calogero: ''Bill Mazeroski, I hate him. He made Mickey Mantle cry. The papers said the Mick cried.

Sonny: ''Mickey Mantle? That's what you're upset about? Mantle makes $100,000 a year. How much does your father make? If your dad ever can't pay the rent and needs money, go ask Mickey Mantle. See what happens. Mickey Mantle don't care about you. Why care about him?

Calogero:'' [narrating] After that, I never felt the same way about the Yankees.

Richard Hoste said...

Leno is hilarious, O'Brien isn't funny. You're all mad.

Anonymous said...

Pothead with GED finds Leno funnier than Conan?! Whoocodanode!?

Anonymous said...

I like Craig Ferguson more than any of them.

Anonymous said...

>Humor, except of the bitter, caustic variety on a very limited range of subjects, does not seem to be a strength of the hbd-sphere.<

Now THAT was funny!