Sunday, January 22, 2017

Nostalgia Theater: Conan's Tonight Show Farewell

Hard to believe, but today marks seven years to the day that Conan O'Brien's abortive, nine-month tenure as host of NBC's Tonight Show came to a close following a heated back-and-forth involving himself, the network, and his predecessor/successor Jay Leno. The events of that imbroglio were dissected in the media, on this blog, and in Bill Carter's terrific 2010 tome The War For Late Night, so I won't bother going into that stuff all over again here. But I did want to share this vid of Conan's closing statement before taking his leave of NBC after twenty-plus years. It's a powerful sentiment that I not only internalized, but that I've done my best to pass on to all the students I've been lucky enough to teach in the years since. Here's the full text of his remarks:
“All I ask is one thing, and I’m asking this particularly of young people that watch: Please do not be cynical. I hate cynicism. For the record, it’s my least favorite quality — 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. I’m telling you, amazing things will happen.”
That's a a sentiment that I still hold to, and I firmly believe it. Here's a piece from last year on how that closing speech came about and the afterlife it's take on since, and here's the vid:

One Year Ago in Nostalgia Theater: Reopening The X-Files

Two Years Ago in Nostalgia Theater: Parker Lewis Can't Lose -- The REAL Ferris Bueller Series

Three Year Ago in Nostalgia Theater: No Happy Days for Cartoon Fonzie

Four Years Ago in Nostalgia Theater: RoboCop Action Figures -- Part Man, Part Machine, All Inappropriate!

Five Years Ago in Nostalgia Theater: G.I. Joe Extreme

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