Monday, June 1, 2009
A Brief Comment: The Tonight Show
Is there anyone more seemingly disingenuous than Jay Leno? He can ace the monologue and JayWalk all he wants, but every time I've seen him interviewing anyone it all feels so scripted, rehearsed, and unnatural. Don't get me wrong, the pre-interview questions are essential for late night talk shows so there's at least something entertaining to dicuss. But what he does with his approach to interviewing guests makes me cringe. Always making sure to get through all the bullet points on that tiny blue card and forcing a segue to the next question without regard to any previous answers. Even in his final interview with Conan, Leno seems overly rushed and rehearsed.
Am I biased? Is it because I grew up watching The Simpsons and would later appreciate his work on Saturday Night Live 3am reruns? Is it because Conan's quick to self-depricate attitude and Late Night's brand of humor is more appealing in general to me than anything on the Tonight Show?
Poppycock. Jay Leno is terrible at feigning interest authentically. I've never watched an entire Tonight Show hosted by either Leno or Johnny Carson, but even Carson seems more genuine in 2 minute infomercials for those Best Of DVDs than Leno does in a 10 minute interview with Will Smith.
Here's to Conan getting what's deserved and to Leno's fading into obscurity.