Conan O’Brien & NBC Reach Deal: Finally, Cuckoo Is Out, Leno Back In (VIDEO)

Conan O’Brien & NBC Reach Deal: Finally, Cuckoo Is Out, Leno Back In

NBC will give $45 million to Conan O’Brien and his “staff” to leave the network so the great Jay Leno can return to his rightful place as host of the Tonight Show.

The Peacock network made the announcement on January 21, 2010.

O’Brien’s final NBC broadcast is Friday. Leno’s second debut as Tonight Show anchor is set for March 1, 2010.

“We’re pleased that Jay is returning to host the franchise that he helmed brilliantly and successfully for many years,” said Jeff Gaspin, chairman of NBC Universal Television Entertainment. “He is an enormous talent, a consummate professional and one of the hardest-working performers on television.”

O’Brien, or “Cuckoo” as his fans call him, can return to television as soon as September but NBC will retain the rights to most of his “comedy bits” (industry term). Why they want to keep them is anyone’s guess.

Many believe O’Brien will land on FOX thus causing a four-way log jam at late night (O’Brien on Fox, Jay Leno on NBC, the disgusting old man David Letterman on CBS, and Jimmy Kimmell on ABC). Land of Punt hopes O’Brien migrates to Murdock’s network because he will flat out falter and watching O’Brien fail will be funnier than Jay-Walking.

While Cuckoo has lots of support on the internet (minus this site), and from teens studying for their GED, no one watches him. He’s not that funny, he’s an elitist Harvard snob, and he’s extremely smarmy. Think Tina Fey only not as masculine.

Leno is a proven ratings winner. He’s funny, affable, and a hard worker. As long as he wants it, Leno should be host of the Tonight Show.

Cuckoo should have returned to the Late Night slot at 12:30am but he apparently didn’t want to usurp current host and fellow SNL alumni Jimmy Fallon.

LOP is flummoxed as why O’Brien displayed such a mind-numbingly, weak-willed, pathetically-puny, overtly-feminine, cowardly show of benevolence (then again, maybe he wanted that $45 million severance package).

O’Brien’s fans will argue that Cuckoo didn’t have the same advantages as Leno, namely a 10pm drama as a lead in. Also, O’Brien hosted the Tonight Show for 7 months while Leno hosted for 17 years.

Finally, O’Brien fans will point out that their guy(?) and Leno have never faced one another head to head. So saying one is a higher ratings-grabber than the other is not fair.

However, those are just excuses because the bottom line is that at 11:35pm more people watched, and want to watch, Leno then O’Brien. Leno is successful. O’Brien is not.

It’s NBC’s network and they can do what they want. Fortunately, they want to return Leno to his rightful place.

Good riddance to Cuckoo.

This entire ordeal is a moot point for Land of Punt. LOP’s late night viewing habits involve Fox News Channel’s Red Eye.

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