We've all had this happen to us- someone has taken something you worked your ass off for. You cry a little bit, you drink a whole lot and then go back to crying some more. You wonder if there's any justice in the world and wonder why we "beat on,boats against the current" (sorry, but I like to quote my Fitzgerald whenever I get the chance). But like my Nana says "everything happens for a reason," right? How often do you get a whole country rallying around your return? Throughout his stand-up tour, blimps, twitter account (where I fruitlessly tried to win one of his 10,000 shirts that he gave away) and his Blitzkrieg of countless promos, Conan got to show those suits at NBC what they're missing while regaining his smart-guy, wacky antics. In short: Coco got his mojo back!
After a cold opening that spanned Godfather references (I laughed a little too long at him getting shot at by an NBC mafia kill team), Jon Hamm (who won't let Conan work at Sterling Cooper because he'd only be 2 years old in 1965), Conan becoming an actual clown, Larry King talking Conan down from a bridge and the Masturbating Bear (who knew I'd ever put those 5 things in one sentence?), Conan hit the ground running with some snarky, but expected "return" jokes. My favorites:
"Welcome to my new show, "Conan." People ask me why I named the show "Conan." I did it so I'd be harder to replace."
"But the weird thing is this: I put myself and my staff through a lot because I refused to go on at midnight. So I get this job at eleven. Then, yesterday, Daylight Savings Time ended-so right now it's basically midnight. In fact, it's 12:05."
"A lot's happened in the news since I went off the air-and I was hoping I could cover it all in one joke. But then I realized that's like trying to keep an icelandic volcano from wearing Lady Gaga's meat dress while a trapped Chilean miner cleans up the BP oil spill...Brett Favre's penis."
First Guest Poll Winner
It was Arlene Wagner, curator of the Leavenworth Nutcracker Museum in Washington. No interview, but she did get a nice little song ("You're the first guest on Conan! The most important person in history!"). And then she just walked out.
First Real Guest
Seth Rogan. He was "so glad everyone else more famous was busy." The conversation was night-time talk show-y (but isn't that the point!?). He was upset that Prop 19 didn't pass in California (somebody can't let his Pineapple Express character go) and talked about proposing to his fiance while she was topless in a closet (because isn't that what every little girl dreams of?). Overall, it was a pretty decent interview to plug his movie The Green Hornet, even if it's not coming out until January.
Second Real Guest
Lea Michele. I kind of snort-laughed when she told Conan that she liked his hair. I'm not a fan of her bangs, so much so, that it makes me consider growing my side bangs out. But once Conan puts his high school photo on the screen into the Glee GQ photo shoot, I remember what I looked like in high school and decided to keep the bangs. Long story short: new episode of Glee this week. Yay!
Besides Arlene, this was the guest I was really looking forward to. During Coco's summer tour, the two teamed up and now he's replacing Meg (just kidding-don't tell people that or I'll probably get yelled at). I guess in his unemployment, he became a really good guitarist! I'd love if they made this a segment: "Coco Collaborates!" (sounds more like a record company, but I was going for alliteration...). This will be on my iPod ASAP.
No, I wasn't going to finish this recap without writing about Coco's faithful sidekick. For some reason, people tend to either love him or hate him. I'm on the loving side, so if you don't like him, I'd skip this paragraph. If you haven't seen Andy Richter Controls The Universe or Andy Barker: PI, make sure you do over Thanksgiving break (laughter cures the holiday blues). Throughout tonight's episode, he had perfectly timed, funny one liners. Some of my favorite lines included:
Andy wearing a Conan mask: "Inside smells like tears."
After Seth Rogan was censored for cursing again: "We only get three a night!"
Basically, Andy wasn't over powering, but he knew when to chime in and when to let Conan shine.
So with that, the first Conan episode is over. George Lopez anyone? I think the reason I wanted to love this show was because I was thinking about what Conan said on the last night hosting The Tonight Show. "Every comedian dreams of hosting The Tonight Show and for seven months, I got to. I did it my way, with people I love, and I do not regret a second. I've had more good fortune than anyone I know and if our next gig is doing a show in a 7-Eleven parking lot, we'll find a way to make it fun. And finally, I have to say something to our fans. The massive outpouring of support and passion from so many people has been overwhelming. The rallies, the signs, all the goofy, outrageous creativity on the Internet, and the fact that people have traveled long distances and camped out all night in the pouring rain to be in our audience, made a sad situation joyous and inspirational. To all the people watching, I can never thank you enough for your kindness to me and I'll think about it for the rest of my life. All I ask of you is one thing: please don't be cynical. I hate cynicism-it's my least favorite quality and it doesn't lead anywhere. Nobody in life gets exactly what they thought they were going to get. But if you work really hard and you're kind, amazing things will happen. As proof, let's make an amazing thing happen right now." Bravo Coco-you did it!