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October 30, 2014

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Johnny Carson Goes Digital

by Gary Susman, posted Aug 11th 2010 2:40PM
Johnny Carson on 'The Tonight Show'Better late than never.

Johnny Carson's 30-year run as host of 'The Tonight Show' ended with his retirement in 1992, and he passed away in 2005, but he's finally back -- in digital form.

Some 3,500 hours of archival 'Tonight' clips, which were buried for decades in a Kansas salt mine (no, really!), have been digitized and uploaded into a searchable online archive, the New York Times reports.

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Questions We'd Ask Conan O'Brien on '60 Minutes'

by Danny Gallagher, posted May 1st 2010 1:27PM
Conan O'BrienFinally after being bound and gagged by the confines of an NBC contract, Coco will be able to remove that ball gag that Jeff Zucker finds so fetching and speak his mind.

He'll be sitting down with '60 Minutes'' Steve Kroft this Sunday for an exclusive interview on everything that's happened since he gave 'The Tonight Show' back to Jay Leno, just a day shy of his interview contract deadline.

This isn't intended to question Kroft's journalistic ability or choice of questions, but he has a position that most TV fans would sacrifice a live goat to have. Ever since the "s" hit the "f" during NBC's "Late Night-Gate," people have been dying to ask Coco questions that could cost him money, legal fees and quite possibly a finger if he answered them before his contract expired. Here are the questions that inquiring minds want to know.

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NBC says Conan O'Brien is not going anywhere

by Danny Gallagher, posted Jan 7th 2010 8:22PM
Conan O'Brien Finally, there is some good news in the never-ending Jay Leno debacle and no, it's not that NBC has finally decided to put The Jay Leno Show out of its long-standing misery.

NBC just released a statement that whatever decision they make regarding Leno's show, they are sticking with Conan O'Brien.

Of course, that doesn't mean they won't make him move back to Late Night or out of The Tonight Show spot to make room for Leno. What do you think the NBC executives will do with Leno or O'Brien, other than pray to Pan, the goat god worshiped by all of the corporate elite?

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Conan O'Brien wants to pimp-slap your ride

by Danny Gallagher, posted Aug 4th 2009 1:02PM
The Mythbusters blow up a car and Adam burns his lips on the exhaustDoes your ride lack a certain something that all good cars should possess, like brakes?

When you drive to work, do the ambulances and fire trucks pull over to the shoulder to let you pass?

Is your vehicle so old that Jesus co-signed the lease?

Maybe it's time you traded that clunker in, not for a bounced government check or another clunker some guy in a $1,000 suit conned you into buying. Maybe it's time you traded it in for two pounds of C4 and 30 spools of Primacord.

Conan O'Brien premiered on last night's Tonight Show the funniest car related sweepstakes since AMC tried to give away a Pacer: one lucky American will get to blow up their car on national television.

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Does your day need a Hiyoooo? You're welcome

by Danny Gallagher, posted Jun 6th 2009 11:03AM
Ed McMahon, the inspiration behind Hiyoooo.comDid you ever tell a joke that really wasn't funny but you knew would draw huge laughs if you just had someone willing to back you up? Have you ever really zinged someone that had it coming, but the zing alone wasn't enough to drive that emotional stake into their ego? Ever just wish that you could have the glory and majesty of Ed McMahon in your home? Now you can have all three.

Introducing Hiyoooo.com, the world's first virtual sidekick. Just say what you gotta say, click Ed's giant head, and all of your statements carry the air of "Hey now"' better than any rap battle audience ever could.

I've been using this thing all throughout my day: in the home, at the office, with my dog. This thing has become so useful in my daily life that I'm thinking of hiring the Shamwow guy to spread the power of its message. I'm sure he could use the money.

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Some 'uh-ohs' bubble up behind the scenes of The Jay Leno Show

by Danny Gallagher, posted Jun 2nd 2009 2:38PM
Jay LenoYou gotta love the ol' rumor mill. It sleeps less than Amy Winehouse.

Conan O'Brien hasn't even finished his first week as the new host of The Tonight Show and the insiders are already churning out rumblings about Jay Leno's new show.

Some sources close to the network and The Jay Leno Show told Kim Masters of The Daily Beast that Leno is slowly growing unhappy with his new time slot and the changes that are being made to the new show by the network. There are even concerns that the stress of the situation is starting to take a toll on the host's health.

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Conan eases back into late night with The Tonight Show

by Danny Gallagher, posted Jun 2nd 2009 2:47AM
The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien

Conan O'Brien's return to late night television as the fifth host of NBC's The Tonight Show (six if you count comedy genius Ernie Kovacs) felt like a jogger who is pacing himself for a long marathon.

That might sound like a bad review. But compare that to Conan's constant high energy Late Night and that makes The Tonight Show a Jack Russell Terrier on at least three Starbucks espressos.

Conan put aside the puppets and characters for his opening night on the Universal Studios lot for a very enjoyable transition to the new Tonight Show that's sure to get better in the months and years to come.

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Point/Counterpoint: The Tonight Show will fail Conan O'Brien

by John Scott Lewinski, posted Jun 1st 2009 7:31PM
conan o'brien's trademark hairdo is en route to 11:30 on the tonight show.Here comes the response to Mr. Zaino's prediction that Conan O'Brien Irish eyes will smile for a long time to come on NBC's The Tonight Show. It's possible the whole deal could turn into a lament.

My argument:
  • It seems more like The Tonight Show isn't the best marriage for Conan O'Brien, rather than the host being wrong for the show. From SNL to The Simpsons to his own Late Night, O'Brien was a driving force in some of the most cutting edge network comedy of the last 15 years. But, The Tonight Show isn't about "cutting edge." It's about something mildly entertaining to watch before folks tuck into bed. It's a waste of O'Brien's chops -- though you can't blame the guy for knocking down the paycheck.
  • Due to lazy NBC programming ideas, O'Brien's popularity could be damaged by his predecessor. No, Jay Leno is in no way out to sabotage his protege. But Leno's upcoming prime time, pre-news lead-in to The Tonight Show seems like overkill. Will audiences want to watch "Leno's old Tonight Show" followed by "O'Brien's new Tonight Show?"

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Conan talks to reporters about "feeding the dragon" on the new Tonight Show

by Danny Gallagher, posted May 27th 2009 1:08PM
Tonight Show host Conan O'Brien
The world's armchair TV executives proudly proclaimed that the only way Conan O'Brien's cavalcade of foul-mouthed puppets and surreal pop culture mechanes could work every night at 11:30 p.m. is with a potent injection of Ritalin (present executive included).

O'Brien noted, however, that television has broken the time barrier.

"I think especially now, people don't watch an episode of Lost when they are supposed to watch it," he said during a recent conference call. "DVRs changed everything. The Internet has changed everything. People are getting it off Hulu and watching shows on their iPhone. What's most important to me with The Tonight Show is it needs to be funny so people can experience it at 11:30 or watch it the next morning while they're eating their oatmeal."

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Craig Ferguson officially has the most badass mug in the history of late night

by Danny Gallagher, posted Apr 24th 2009 12:04PM
Craig Ferguson's rattlesnake mugThere are a lot of great traditions in the world of late night. Every host has to endure the wrath of Mother Nature's cruel comedy by letting an animal crap in their lap. Every host has to invite a nutball celebrity who is guaranteed to shoot up or snort something in the green room five seconds before their interview.

But one lesser known, some would say downright boring, tradition has gone by the wayside. Maybe that's because the choices are usually something boring. There was Johnny Carson's face mug, Conan O'Brien's Eisenhower mug and some boring old mug that's so dull, they couldn't even sell it in the gift shop to tourists who would buy a bag of puke if it had the Last Call with Carson Daly logo on it.

All of that changed when CBS' Craig Ferguson revived this grand tradition by jamming a cardiac needle of adrenaline into its heart with his mug.

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The curious case of Conan O'Brien - VIDEO

by Danny Gallagher, posted Feb 23rd 2009 1:02PM
Conan
Conan O'Brien's final Late Night ended on a bold note, one that didn't involve animals doing things that would get humans arrested or Abe Vigoda being the best damn Abe Vigoda he can be. In fact, the only way it was remotely funny is if you are one of those douchebags who heckles a comic for building a serious moment or still thinks yelling "Do 'Freebird'!" in between songs at a concert is funny. You know who you are.

It was a serious and heartfelt moment for a show that some naysayers claim is already too silly and asinine for its audience. He put these stuck-up snobs in their rightful place and taught all who watched an important lesson about being true to yourself, especially in the face of those who say it's a big mistake.

And this from a show that features a bear that masturbates on cue. Suck on that, Hallmark Channel.

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The Masturbating Bear... who loves ya baby? - VIDEO

by Danny Gallagher, posted Feb 20th 2009 6:03PM
Masturbating Bear in Carbonite
The last week ever of Late Night with Conan O'Brien was bound to include a few shockers. And while I'm still hoping that one of them won't be the failure to launch of Andy Richter's homecoming, another bigger staple came to an end and was probably followed by a long nap and an anthill of shame and loneliness.

Conan held a going away sketch for one of the show's most popular and least marketable characters, the Masturbating Bear.

If you haven't seen this infamous character "in action," feel yourself (not that way sicko) among the fortunate because it's one of the most hilarious and personally shameful moments you will ever experience in your life. Greater even than your prom, your cousin's drunken wedding and your first college beer party where you woke up with one less eyebrow combined.

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TV Obits: Callahan, Tuttle, Handelman

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 15th 2007 2:01PM

Charles in ChargeA roundup of TV people from in front of the camera and behind the scenes who have passed away.

  • James Callahan: He played the grandfather on Charles In Charge. He had appearances on several shows over the years, including Medium, ER, Promised Land, Cybill, Caroline in the City, Picket Fences, Golden Girls, M*A*S*H, Adam-12, The Invanders, Route 66, The Time Tunnel, My Favorite Martian, Dennis The Menace, and dozens of others. He died of cancer at age 76.

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