Whilst I was on vacation, The Tonight Show With Conan O’Brien made its debut on NBC. The first show – on 1st June – saw Conan take over the franchise of The Tonight Show from Jay Leno.
The first show opened with a video showing Conan getting ready to start The Tonight Show only to realise he forgot one important thing – he forgot to move from New York to Los Angeles where The Tonight Show is filmed. The Tonight Show is housed in a studio in the Universal Studios lot.
In the video, Conan couldn’t hail a cab in NYC so ran from New York to Los Angeles passing through various points across the country on the way – including Las Vegas – but when he arrived in LA he forgot he left his keys in his NYC apartment, so he plowed the door to The Tonight Show studio with a mechanical digger.
Other highlights of the first show included Conan doing a Universal Studios tour in the Universal tour tram, where he took the tram outside of the lot and caused mayhem, and guests Will Ferrell (who arrived in style and even sang a special song for Conan) & Pearl Jam.
Some of his first words on the show were “I think I’ve timed this move perfectly. I’m on a last-place network, I moved to a state that’s bankrupt and The Tonight Show is sponsored by General Motors”.
Something to note about The Tonight Show – it keeps a very similar theme tune to Late Night With Conan O’Brien with some tweaks. Click here to watch the opening titles.
The Tonight Show With Conan O’Brien has been a hit in the ratings – Variety says its first week ratings “proved to be even bigger than expected in key demos” and that it “averaged a 2.3 rating in adults 18-49” which outdid the ratings of CBS’s Late Show With David Letterman. Jimmy Fallon – host of Late Night – saw big ratings for his show on the debut week of The Tonight Show With Conan O’Brien. The Tonight Show saw Late Night With Jimmy Fallon get record ratings.
1st June 2009 – Cold opening;
1st June 2009 – Conan at a Lakers game;
1st June 2009 – Joe Biden talking to Judge Sotomayor;
1st June 2009 – Universal Studios tram tour;
1st June 2009 – Will Ferrell interview (Part 1);
1st June 2009 – Will Ferrell interview (Part 2);
The Making Of The Cold Open;
If you experience problems watching the videos embedded above please go to www.nbc.com/conan and watch the videos there.