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Subject: "conan has become self-parody" This topic is locked.
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Smingers
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Fri Sep-05-03 07:41 PM

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"conan has become self-parody"


  

          

i know the regulars in the reviews board love all things conan, so i wanted to post this and see what kind of feedback i got.

i've been a conan watcher for years, and i've really come to think that the show has peaked and is declining. i fully understand how difficult it must be to come up with an hour's worth of material 5 nights a week, 50 weeks a year, even with a team of writers. however, watching conan on subsequent nights and weeks, i get the feeling that i'm watching conan do a parody of conan. every night he goes through the same motions: disparaging the show, saying, "we've got a great show tonight . . . not like every other night" - making the same gestures, the same noises, the same facial expressions. his routine has gotten to be very stale to me.

this is to say nothing of his interviewing, which has gotten increasingly ridiculous. at any point in time, conan will make wild interjections, which are jarring as often as they are entertaining. as an interviewer, he should be making his subject the focus each night. however, conan typically remains the center of all things. even while interviewing people he remains completely self-referential. the focus is always on conan, and the guests are just incidental. he always brings the discussion back to himself, and rarely lets his guests talk much. when someone arrives who can keep up with conan, it's usually highly entertaining. but that's the exception and not the norm.

i think the departure of andy has had a lot to do with this. andy provided a natural foil for conan, and they could play off one another and keep the show in balance. it would even help if max weinberg was regularly there. jimmy levino doesn't get a tremendous amount of airtime -- nothing to compare with kevin eubanks or paul schaffer.

so does anybody agree or disagree? i think the show peaked several years ago, is watchable in small doses, but isn't really worth nightly viewing.

"...let my children hear music - for God's sake - they have had enough noise."
Charles Mingus

  

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Topic Outline
Subject Author Message Date ID
RE: conan has become self-parody
Sep 05th 2003
1
but not letterman
Sep 05th 2003
2
RE: but not letterman
Sep 05th 2003
4
RE: but not letterman
Sep 10th 2003
18
agreed
Sep 06th 2003
6
now LETTERMAN is self parody!!!
Sep 06th 2003
9
co-sign
Sep 06th 2003
10
I disagree
Sep 07th 2003
14
that is true.............
Sep 10th 2003
19
YES!!!!
Sep 05th 2003
3
i somewhat agree...
Sep 06th 2003
5
RE: i somewhat agree...
Sep 10th 2003
16
a valid criticism + a link:
Sep 06th 2003
7
that was a long read
Sep 06th 2003
11
this says it perfectly...
Sep 06th 2003
12
you have given a great review
Sep 06th 2003
8
I'm with you.
Sep 07th 2003
13
you're right
Sep 08th 2003
15
RE: you're right
Sep 13th 2003
20
      I think it's the nature of the talk show circuit
Sep 15th 2003
26
w/out max & andy it's fallen off i agree
Sep 10th 2003
17
Thank you!
Sep 14th 2003
21
Am I too black to like any of these cats?
Sep 14th 2003
22
there, there
Sep 14th 2003
23
Yeah and I'll bet Comicview makes you laugh
Sep 14th 2003
24
Conan is still good
Sep 15th 2003
25

classic77
Member since Sep 12th 2002
466 posts
Fri Sep-05-03 07:59 PM

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1. "RE: conan has become self-parody"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

Conan in "decline" is still better than Leno.

"As a female rapper,I'm like the Marilyn Monroe or Pamela Anderson of hip hop.I come with more flavor and it's sexy not raunchy.Instead of me saying 'Fuck me in my pussy'I'll say 'Feel my punanny'and it comes off sexier".- Gloria Velez

  

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DrNO
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Fri Sep-05-03 08:36 PM

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2. "but not letterman"
In response to Reply # 1


  

          

then again even conan in his prime is below letterman. letterman is te god of talkshow hosts.

_
http://youtube.com/watch?v=4TztqYaemt0
http://preptimeposse.blogspot.com/

  

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sfMatt
Member since Jun 20th 2002
10383 posts
Fri Sep-05-03 10:11 PM

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4. "RE: but not letterman"
In response to Reply # 2


  

          

thank you

  

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Mr Mystery
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Wed Sep-10-03 02:08 PM

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18. "RE: but not letterman"
In response to Reply # 2


  

          

i never understand the appeal of letterman. he's corny and boring to me. although better than leno

God is my Bodyguard!

Torn between saturday night and early sunday morn, I don't know i'm somewhere stuck in between(tween)!-Dre 3000

  

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Smingers
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Sat Sep-06-03 08:46 AM

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6. "agreed"
In response to Reply # 1


  

          

but what kind of standard is that? leno is patently unfunny.

"...let my children hear music - for God's sake - they have had enough noise."
Charles Mingus

  

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InKast
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Sat Sep-06-03 04:06 PM

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9. "now LETTERMAN is self parody!!!"
In response to Reply # 1


          

that dude hasn't been sincere about anything in years, he's all shtick

when Norm McDonald used to impersonate him on SNL it was sooooooo in point!!!! "got any gum?" fuckin hilarious

  

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okaycomputer
Member since Dec 02nd 2002
8090 posts
Sat Sep-06-03 05:34 PM

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10. "co-sign"
In response to Reply # 9


          

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

eagerly awaiting:

a perfect circle - thirteenth step (Sept. 16)
atmosphere - seven's travels (Sept. 23)
aesop rock - bazooka tooth (Sept. 23)
non-prophets - hope (Oct. 7)

  

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sfMatt
Member since Jun 20th 2002
10383 posts
Sun Sep-07-03 01:36 PM

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14. "I disagree"
In response to Reply # 9


  

          

(Yes norm doing dave was fucking hilarious, he had all the manerisms down)

But the reason the Late Show continues to be inventively goofball and funny is because of the humor Dave brings to that show. The he and the writers all share a goofy ass vision of random funny ass shit. I believe he's way more sincere about what he does than Craig, Leno, *and* Conan.

  

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arrojenkins
Member since Dec 26th 2002
16120 posts
Wed Sep-10-03 08:14 PM

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19. "that is true............."
In response to Reply # 1


  

          

he's still the best. bring back triumph. make him a co-host.

no conundrum, your bars straight hum-drum
young cocoa butter, something like an old tum-tum
a blocka blocka like grandfather mori tanaka
tatonka, chief rocka © heems

  

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sfMatt
Member since Jun 20th 2002
10383 posts
Fri Sep-05-03 10:10 PM

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3. "YES!!!!"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

Thank you! I was thinking about making this post a few days ago. The shows lately have been sad (when they aren't re-runs.) Out of all the shows I saw in the past two weeks I think one joke made me chuckle. He's stale as *HELL* and I'm cringing at the thought of this 10th anniversary special. I think the only way it will be bearable is if there are TONS of old highlights, from what I'm not affectionately refering to as 'the good 'ol days.'

I'm not sure how I feel about your comment about Andy. Honestly while Andy was a great character to have on the set, Conan certainly didn't *need* him to keep the show on the level that it was at. I think it really comes down to the writing taking less chances, the characters becoming old and familiar, and the bits not being far enough from the "Leno mold" as I'll call it. Conan is a *very* bright guy, and a genius with the pen, which is why I'm somewhat baffled as to why the show has been dropping off so much. I hope at this point that the dipping is part of a cycle, and that things will get better again in a year or two. I say that mostly because there were certainly a few years in the CBS stint where Dave's show was kinda crappy, but the staff at that show have made quite a rebound. Perhaps Conan's can too.

  

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okaycomputer
Member since Dec 02nd 2002
8090 posts
Sat Sep-06-03 03:40 AM

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5. "i somewhat agree..."
In response to Reply # 0
Sat Sep-06-03 03:40 AM

          

i've been getting tired of him, but i think in some recent weeks he's had some really good shows. I actually like his interviews a lot, especially with the lead guest, because a lot of times you can tell they get pissed off at the way conan handles things...he doesn't make it easy for them to go through their routine answers...Richard Lewis comes to mind, he was really pissed off and it was hilarious because i hate that guy.

I'd rather watch Conan alone than have to deal with Paul Schaffer or Kevin Eubanks...they are awful. Especially Paul Schaffer, he has kept me from watching letterman, he is unbearably annoying. Eubanks is a little better, but Leno just isn't funny at all.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

eagerly awaiting:

a perfect circle - thirteenth step (Sept. 16)
atmosphere - seven's travels (Sept. 23)
aesop rock - bazooka tooth (Sept. 23)
non-prophets - hope (Oct. 7)

  

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damngirlobserver
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1119 posts
Wed Sep-10-03 08:24 AM

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16. "RE: i somewhat agree..."
In response to Reply # 5


  

          

>i've been getting tired of him, but i think in some recent
>weeks he's had some really good shows. I actually like his
>interviews a lot, especially with the lead guest, because a
>lot of times you can tell they get pissed off at the way
>conan handles things...he doesn't make it easy for them to
>go through their routine answers...Richard Lewis comes to
>mind, he was really pissed off and it was hilarious because
>i hate that guy.

when dana carvey was on a little bit ago, he did some kind of reverse conan thing and wouldn't let conan say anything...i could not stop laughing

>I'd rather watch Conan alone than have to deal with Paul
>Schaffer or Kevin Eubanks...they are awful. Especially Paul
>Schaffer, he has kept me from watching letterman, he is
>unbearably annoying.

i agree...schaffer is horrible and i don't watch letterman because of him

"Hypocrisy is the ultimate form of intellectual freedom." - Walleye

  

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Mosaic
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16408 posts
Sat Sep-06-03 08:54 AM

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7. "a valid criticism + a link:"
In response to Reply # 0


          

i've actually found the self-deprecation schtick a little much at this point. on top of that, now that you mention it, his interviews are, with increasing frequency, prone to getting super-off-track by his antics and hijinks.

still, i'm a pretty big Conan fan, at the very least, because all other late night talk shows are pretty lame in comparison. Leno is obviously Leno, Dave's just kind of old and grumpy now, Kilborn is just okay, and Kimmel can be interesting to watch, but i'd be surprised if he's still at it in two years.

here's a pretty good article that was recently written that's worth reading:

http://www.boston.com/news/globe/magazine/articles/2003/08/31/understanding_conan/

  

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arispect
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Sat Sep-06-03 06:20 PM

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11. "that was a long read"
In response to Reply # 7


  

          

but a good one. i agree he's been a little old recently, but he's still the best in the business

www.myspace.com/thesmyrk

  

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okaycomputer
Member since Dec 02nd 2002
8090 posts
Sat Sep-06-03 06:37 PM

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12. "this says it perfectly..."
In response to Reply # 7


          

"For all the influences and echoes in his work, O'Brien is an original, and like all originals, he is creating his own category. He takes the persona of hapless schlemiel and wraps it in a layer of self-aware irony that goofs on the very idea of stardom, of television itself -- and that, in turn, is wrapped in a layer of happy-to-be-here ingenuousness, both because O'Brien knows the limits of irony and because he is happy to be here."

a little wordy, but right on point

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

eagerly awaiting:

a perfect circle - thirteenth step (Sept. 16)
atmosphere - seven's travels (Sept. 23)
aesop rock - bazooka tooth (Sept. 23)
non-prophets - hope (Oct. 7)

  

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Esco
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44856 posts
Sat Sep-06-03 01:12 PM

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8. "you have given a great review"
In response to Reply # 0


          

you should listen to my song at this link and give me your opinion

  

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murph25
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Sun Sep-07-03 05:55 AM

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13. "I'm with you."
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

Conan has been going downhill for a while. Losing Richter was a serious blow to the on-set dynamic. Conan by himself can be funny, but only when the writing supports him. I don't know all the backstage details, but I would suspect that some number of Conan's original writers have left over the last 10 years, and this could be why the show has slipped into self-parody of late. There was a time when Conan was the funniest thing in late night TV. Now, I'm not so sure (network competition is weak, but Jon Stewart's show comes to mind). There are rumors of Conan potentially moving to an 11:30 time slot in a couple years, and if he did so I'd watch it. With a little novelty and some re-energizing of the writing he could still make a great show.

peace,
murph

  

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johnny_domino
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Mon Sep-08-03 03:15 AM

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15. "you're right"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

it was much better with Andy and Max

  

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Smingers
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3882 posts
Sat Sep-13-03 07:23 PM

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20. "RE: you're right"
In response to Reply # 15


  

          

yeah, but not only is the show hurting without them, but it's hurting because conan himself is in decline. although a good bit of that probably has to do with their absence.

"...let my children hear music - for God's sake - they have had enough noise."
Charles Mingus

  

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johnny_domino
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Mon Sep-15-03 06:13 AM

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26. "I think it's the nature of the talk show circuit"
In response to Reply # 20


  

          

you hit your stride around year 5-6, and by year 10 you've settled into your schtick. I still like Conan better than anyone else though.

  

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rawsouthpaw
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Wed Sep-10-03 12:24 PM

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17. "w/out max & andy it's fallen off i agree"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          


but it still is hilarious at times, especially after some of that wacky tobaccy



----------------------------

http://summerproleague.com/photo_gallery.htm




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fuck the president!!"
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love and respect



  

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PolarbearToenails
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Sun Sep-14-03 05:40 AM

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21. "Thank you!"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

Every Conan post I mention this, and every time its flame city.

-
Bullseye with Jesse Thorn
A public radio show about things that are awesome.
http://www.maximumfun.org
"This is the kind of show people listen to in a more perfect world." - McSweeney's

  

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k_orr
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Sun Sep-14-03 07:02 AM

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22. "Am I too black to like any of these cats?"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

I find none of these people particularly funny
- conan
- dave
- jay
- jimmy
- craig
- that guy on Talk Soup
- that guy on Comedy Central with the news show

They all just seem corny to me.

I don't find comic view all that entertaining either.

Please help, I need laughter.

http://breddanansi.tumblr.com/

  

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Smingers
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Sun Sep-14-03 08:16 AM

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23. "there, there"
In response to Reply # 22


  

          

go check out the orlando jones show.


(i got jokes)

"...let my children hear music - for God's sake - they have had enough noise."
Charles Mingus

  

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DRUMMANIZER
Member since Aug 22nd 2002
197 posts
Sun Sep-14-03 12:44 PM

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24. "Yeah and I'll bet Comicview makes you laugh"
In response to Reply # 22


          

I love every second of Late Night, period.
Only criticism: saying " tonight we REALLY have a good show" and whatnot is getting pretty old. And Max is sorely missed.

MONTREAL BEATS ALL

  

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hope
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1030 posts
Mon Sep-15-03 04:01 AM

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25. "Conan is still good"
In response to Reply # 0


  

          

It has the occasional dry moment, but it is still the best late night show on. I figure he's still a newlywed, the baby on the way, he is a little preoccupied. He will be back to the old Conan soon enough. They replayed the Jim Carrey episode last week, which has got to be the funniest thing I have seen all year long on the show. I think that is what the show needs, more really famous people, because he steps his game up when the guests are high profile, as opposed to having Al Roker on every week.

  

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