Conan And His Mario Backdrop May Leave Late Night

Conan O'Brien, the video game friendly The Tonight Show, could be leaving the program after only seven months in the seat of NBC's long-running talk show.

Conan O'Brien took over hosting duties for The Tonight Show on June 1 of last year, and within days he was on gamers' radar with his Mario-esque set backdrop. Over the course of the next seven months Conan talked video game sales, teased Tiger Woods, and cast his sidekick as Ezio in Assassin's Creed II.

Now the late-night talk show host is considering leaving the business, thanks to a decision by NBC to push The Tonight Show to 12.05am in order to make room for Jay Leno's return to late-night television at 11.35pm. Leno originally left The Tonight Show to pursue a primetime comedy show, which has since failed to capture an audience.

Conan feels strongly that moving The Tonight Show to the next day would destroy what the show stands for, and I'd agree. The Tonight Show follows the evening news, and putting a show before it would mean it isn't really The Tonight Show anymore.

Conan released a statement earlier today, discussing the possibility of leaving the show.

So it has come to this: I cannot express in words how much I enjoy hosting this program and what an enormous personal disappointment it is for me to consider losing it. My staff and I have worked unbelievably hard and we are very proud of our contribution to the legacy of The Tonight Show. But I cannot participate in what I honestly believe is its destruction. Some people will make the argument that with DVRs and the Internet a time slot doesn't matter. But with the Tonight Show, I believe nothing could matter more.

You can read the full statement at The New York Times.

Speaking for myself, I'll miss the guy terribly should he go. I feel like I've grown up with The Tonight Show, and Conan O'Brien has brought new life to a show that had been stale for a long time.


    He's right. The show has been in that timeslot for god knows how long and the only reason they want to bump him is to put Leno back in that slot... Lenos ratings have SUCKED since he got his new show. People didn't watch the Tonight show just for Leno, they watched it BECAUSE it's the Tonight show!

    Screwing over Conan like this is just pathetic.

    I’ve been watching these shows on the comedy channel for years, I kind of liked it the way it was back in the day when Conan was hosting late night, that’s where his comedic style was at its best, I haven’t really been watching the Jimmy Fallon version. His scripted comedy falls flat every time, he’s really funny off the cuff when he’s just talking to guests or audience members, but his segments are just horrible. I’m pretty certain Conan will be leaving NBC with a fat paycheck and probably heading to another network.

    Leno was never, is not, and never will be, all that funny Any sentient chin can do what he does. Conan, I find annoying at times, but overall enjoy- his show has a much higher Guffaw Index than any other (besides maybe Letterman). Perhaps this is the geek factor. And Fallon I have always disliked. Funny on occasion, he laughs too much at himself- breaking the first rule of comedy from which only Billy Connolly and Robin Williams are exempt. And he is a massive douchebag. But hey, The Tonight Show screwed Letterman over all those years ago, it turned out rather nicely for him. Leno may console himself with his cars, but Letterman first got the money, then he got the women, then he got the POWER! Then more women, and more money.

    Conan is the best out of all the Tonight Show hosts, and any other similar shows.
    He's the king.
    If he leaves and doesn't do the show at all in the future, I will cry.
    That is all.

    Poor guy, does he know he is only on pay-tv here in Australia. There, there. Dave is on free and pay TV.

    His backdrop was pretty crap too, they should have had it with colour instead of looking uncompleted and some special effects bluescreen.

    I give him his dues, he is much more entertaining that Leno. NBC must love that chin - i mean i can hardly understand anything he says.

      If it was coloured it'd go from subtle homage to copyright infringement.

        You sure about that? I beg to differ. So if it had any other colour than blue it would be instant copyright infringement. I never said copy the picture in this article, cause then that would look silly.

        But then again, he could have got some originality and done something better.

    Props to Conan's crew for balancing the audio throughout his shows as well. That's the biggest problem I have with watching Leno is that the audio volume in the audience is always cranked up too high - far too often all I hear is the audience's response to Leno's previous joke and not the punchline of the next joke. Also preferred Conan in that I could actually hear what he was saying instead of feeling like I was being psychologically manipulated into liking the show because the studio audience was laughing so very hard.

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