Tag Archives: conan o’brien

TomThon Part Two: Nerds in Paradise

This is a friendly reminder that the second installment of TomThon takes place tonight. If you have not yet pledged some cash to keep the freeform station of the nation on the air, now is the chance. If you have pledged already, you are awesome. Maybe you can be even more awesome and dig a little deeper? Give it some thought.

Last week, I gave everyone a litany of reasons to donate funds to WFMU. I won’t repeat all of those points, though if you want some more, Julie Klausner posted her own reasons for donating at Gothamist. But I will reiterate why you may want to donate during tonight’s installment of The Best Show on WFMU. A mere $75 dollars will not only get you some great swag from the station itself, but also:

  • A Best Show poster drawn by legendary comic artist Charles Burns (Black Hole, Dog Boy)
  • The amazing Wu-Tang-esque Best Show t-shirt seen here
  • A 7″ called “Rated G.G.,” containing cleaned-up versions of G.G. Allin songs performed by Ted Leo, Fucked Up, Ben Gibbard, and many more
  • A digital download of said 7″, which also includes not only the single’s contents, but some ultra-rare material from Scharpling & Wurster, among others

For TomThon Phase One, host Tom Scharpling gave away some amazing random prizes, too, such as a Monty Python DVD boxed set signed by Terry Gilliam. If you donate this week, you will be in the running to win prizes that are just as fabulous. What could possibly be as fabulous? How about:

  • A single and LP signed by Conan O’Brien
  • A copy of I Am America signed by Stephen Colbert
  • Books signed by Chris Elliott, PLUS a copy of Daddy’s Boy signed by both Chris AND Bob Elliott

As if this wasn’t enough, there will be other fantastic giveaways autographed by tonight’s in-studio guests. That includes Mr. Leo and Carl Newman, who will stop by the studio for the second week in a row for your musical enjoyment. They will be joined by songsmith Kurt Vile and wordsmith John Hodgman, and I’m sure all of them have awesome things planned for the event.

What if you can’t actually donate during the show for some reason? Just email toms@wfmu.org with your pledge. You will be in the running for any and all prizes given away during the show. Sound good?

I did some phone slaving this weekend at the WFMU studios, and trust me when I say that every donation is welcomed. I took more than a few $15 donations, and if that’s what you can spare, it is more than appreciated. Altogether, we raised over $11,000 for Terre T’s awesome show. Every little bit helps.

Tom has also issued a challenges to see who can get the biggest celebrity to RT this event on Twitter. I’m just throwing this out there on the off chance that I have any big shots who frequent this site. Or, maybe you’re a regular schmoe reading this site who knows some big wigs yourself, in which case you could get them to RT and win said challenge. By all means, do it. That way, we all win.

And again, if you can’t spare cash, spare some time to spread the word on Twitter, Facebook, your blog, any message boards you frequent, random telephone poles, whatever. It all helps.

Tune in, turn on, and turn out (your wallets), tonight at 9pm. DON’T STOP NOW.

NBC Explains its Jay Leno Strategy

jayleno.jpgSimply put, Jay Leno is one of the most compelling entertainers in the world today. We defy you to think of a more immortal comedy routine than Jaywalking. Iron Jay is perhaps the most beloved character of all time. And when the history of humor is written, the works of Mark Twain and James Thurber will pale in comparison to The Dancing Judge Itos.

Jay Leno is a resource we can not afford to lose. If we don’t cater to his every whim, we have to assume he would take his classic cars and race track and march over to ABC or FOX, and take his entire audience with him. We also have to assume said audience includes the tens of millions of Americans currently avoiding his 10pm show in droves.

Therefore, we are reinstating Jay Leno into the 11:35pm slot. His program will run until 7am, preempting the first two hours of The Today Show. But don’t worry, Matt Lauer fans. Matt will get his own breakfast-time segment on Jay’s show, where Jay and him show you how to prepare eggs from the inside of a 1932 Ford roadster.

But this is only the first phase of our new Jay Leno-based programming schedule. Jay will appear in current the NBC programs Chuck, Mercy, and Heroes. Not in cameo appearances, but as a regular character named Jay Leno, who will deliver monologues at critical junctures during each episode. He will also receive 15 minutes of live airtime during each episode of Parks and Recreation to do whatever he wants. Headlines, Mini-Jay, change sparkplugs on one of his Hudson Hornets–the possibilities are endless!

And there’s even more good news, Jay Leno fans! Starting this fall, Jay will star in a new, 90 minute drama, Jay and the Jalopy, in which he and a talking robotic Stutz Bearcat solve mysteries.

As for Conan O’Brien, we had high hopes when we asked him to take over The Tonight Show. However, the ratings have been somewhat disappointing, and we feel these low ratings have adversely affected the audience for Jay’s show. It’s our theory that people aren’t watching Conan, and thus aren’t keeping their TVs tuned to NBC throughout the following 21.5 hours until Jay’s show is on. There really is no other explanation for people refusing to watch Jay Leno!

However, we greatly appreciate Conan keeping the seat warm for Jay during this past year. And we will recognize that appreciation with a special ceremony in the NBC commissary, where we will give Conan a very nice watch and a gift certificate to Bed Bath and Beyond.

Some may say this strategy is short-sighted, that it ignores the younger, more connected audience that loves Conan and will not watch Jay Leno under any circumstances. To these concerns, we would like to respectfully plug our ears with our fingers and yell loudly LA LA LA WE’RE NOT LISTENING!!

Jay Leno and the Persistence of Mediocrity

There are times when I feel profoundly disconnected from humanity. Like, I operate on a completely different wavelength than the rest of the world. These moments tend to occur whenever I turn on the TV. Or read anything online. Or leave the house.

I realize this is an extremely childish and narcissistic POV. Everyone feels different–Free to Be You and Me taught me that. Well, that and the inherent creepiness of baby puppets.

But how am I supposed to feel, gentle reader, when I’m told that the entire world is all a-twitter at the news that Jay Leno will host a 10pm talk show, and I think to myself, Wow, Jay Leno still exists?

I mean, seriously, people are excited about this? No one has ever been excited by anything Jay Leno has ever done. I challenge you to convince me otherwise.

leno.jpgI still don’t understand how Jay Leno got to be Johnny Carson’s successor. Who let that happen? Shouldn’t that have been reviewed by the Council of Things That Make No Damn Sense?

Johnny Carson was witty and urbane, a gifted comedian and a master interviewer. No one has ever used any of those words to describe Jay Leno, except prefaced with the word “not”.

People still talk about sketches Johnny Carson used to do on The Tonight Show. You see clips of his most famous celebrity interviews on TV all the time. Jon Stewart imitates him at least once a night. He remains the gold standard by which all late night fare is judged.

You think they’ll sell “The Best of Jay Leno” DVDs some day? Nope, and you will never say this to your grandkids:

Back in my day, we all used to gather ’round the television and watch The Jay Leno Program. I still remember the time he found a midget version of himself! And the time Kevin Eubanks pretended to laugh at his monologue for the 8 millionth time! Oh, it was magic!

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