In news that will surprise absolutely no one, Jay Leno is still grumpy about his “retirement” from the Tonight Show. There was a huge debacle in 2010 when Conan O’Brien was meant to take over the reigns. He lasted just 6 months before NBC pulled the plug and put Leno back on the air. Thankfully, Conan was scooped up by TBS and his show remains as goofy and relevant as ever.
And just when we thought the dust had finally settled on one of the nastiest deals in late night television, Leno piped up again. In an interview that will air this Sunday on 60 Minutes, when asked if he would like to stay on, Leno commented, “It’s not my decision, and I think I probably would have stayed if we didn’t have an extremely qualified, young guy ready to jump in. [Jimmy Fallon] is probably more like a young Johnny [Carson] than almost anybody since. And he’s really good. So you go with the new guy. Makes perfect sense to me.”
Cool Leno, way to back-handedly compliment Fallon and insult Conan O’Brien SIMULTANEOUSLY. Ugh, good riddance. Even though Leno would likely rather keep his position and maintain that time slot is as funny as my tax return... it looks like he is actually going to bow out this time.
A lot of people are thrilled for Fallon to be taking over the tired Tonight Show. Over the years, he’s crafted a one-of-a-kind spot that’s as much of a variety hour as it is a talk show. Seth Meyers will be taking over Fallon’s later spot and oh, hey look at that, NBC’s late night line-up is exciting again!
Here’s how we’d like to see Fallon step up his game and bring “must see” back to NBC.
You Need More Women on Your Show
News flash! Women take up half of the world’s population, and probably half of your viewership. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE The Roots (Philly, represent!) and think their comedy music bits are one of the most charming elements of your show. I also just want to hug Questlove and go get sushi together, but that’s besides the point. C’mon Jimmy, you’re hip and with it, so get really with it. I'd love to see some ladies fulfilling roles on your show other than just guests.
Don’t Let Leno Get In Your Head
You could see it on Conan’s face when he briefly took over for the Tonight Show — he was fighting for his job. Leno and the network were waiting for him to fail. Sure, your format is different than Leno’s and your key demo is a lot younger than your predecessor’s... but hey, your formula works, so don’t go reinventing the wheel completely.
Relax During Your Interviews
Jimmy, look, some people thought it was cute when you broke all of the time on SNL. Some people really, really hated it. You’ve been on television for a long time now and it’s time to play a bit slicker. You always look so nervous and giggly when you’re behind your desk. It’s as if The Chris Farley show miraculously made a come back. “Remember when you were on the Beatles... that was awesome!” You got this, Jim, you really do.
It’s Okay Sometimes To Be Serious
Now that you’ve got the Prime Time late night slot, bring on the politicians, authors, and world leaders. They can be surprisingly funny. But who am I kidding, celebrity drinking games are awesome. Keep having fun up there, viewers will follow.