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Mike Reyes, aka Mr. Controversy, has considered himself a writer ever since he was a child. He wrote for various school publications from about 1995 until 2006, and currently runs both The Bookish Kind and Mr. Controversy, which is an offshoot of the regular column he wrote in High School. He's also a film journalist/critic for Cocktails & Movies and CinemaBlend, as well as the author of several short stories such as "The Devil v. George W. Bush". Any inquiries for reprinting, writing services, or general contact, should be forwarded to: mikereyeswrites@gmail.com

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Friday, February 20, 2009

Goodbye, Conan (for now)

As everyone knows, tonight is the final night of Late Night with Conan O'Brien. After a successful 16 year run, Conan is vacating New York and heading to California to host The Tonight Show as promised. As usual, this prompted me to reflect and get sentimental as I am wont to do, so here's a letter to Conan for all of the laughs he's provided in 16 years.

Dear Conan O’Brien,

I still remember when I first started watching your show. I was a seventh grader in middle school, and I stumbled upon your reruns on CNBC. Being a fan of late night television ever since I was a small boy, I started recording your show and watching it semi religiously. Thinking back to those first few episodes, I remember some of the funniest and most endearing characters from the Late Night family. Carl “Oldy” Olson and his creepiness, Pimpbot 5000 and his holy pimped-ness, and of course my personal favorites, the NBC Peacock and its endless shilling for Asteroid. I also remember the comedic antics of you, Andy Richter, and Max Weinberg. (Never before had I seen a band leader get so into the comedy of a show.)

Sadly Andy would move on to have his career sodomized by the Fox and NBC networks and their lack of vision, and Max would pop out every now and then to go on tour with Bruce once again, but the show was always great. What I loved most about “Late Night with Conan O’Brien”, was the off kilter humor Leno wouldn’t do. I would always defend my preference for your show over Leno by making the case that Leno was the safer, middle road of comedy; whereas you were the crazy-assed zig zag of comedy. Your jokes obscure, your references even more obscure, and your celebrity secrets ever revealing, you’ve always reigned in my late night pantheon.

Now you’re moving from New York and letting that no talent asshat Jimmy Fallon fill your headspace, and it saddens me. Sure I’m glad The Tonight Show will now have you as its host, but I’ll miss knowing that somewhere in New York you were making people laugh. I sadly never got to be a part of the studio audience for one of your shows, but always wanted to be. However, at least for now, my opportunity has passed and I mourn what could have been.

I shall end this message with a profound thank you. Thank you for the Masturbating Bear, thank you for James Lipton and Labamba in the steam room, thank you for the Stewart/Colbert/O’Brien smackdown. Most importantly, thanks for the ultimate Church hymn of our times, "I'ma Gonna Go To Hell (When I Die)". Thanks for everything.

Have a safe trip to California, may you and your family be well, and don’t forget to thaw out the Masturbating Bear,

Mike Reyes, aka Mr. Controversy

P.S. Can I have “Late Night” if/when Jimmy Fallon screws the pooch? I think I’d be suited for the job quite well.


Anonymous said...

Conan O'Brien is definitively my hero, even though his show isn't shown properly in Britain. We have a chat-show host who emulates Letterman (Jonathan Ross), it's a shame we don't have anyone like Conan.

I might have to do it myself, if nobody else is going to get round to it.

Mr. Controversy said...

From what I've seen of Jonathan Ross, he's pretty good. Though while you don't properly have Conan, we don't properly have Graham Norton. (I find him to be quite funny.) Not to mention, we never properly had Jimmy Carr's Distraction (also, quite funny).

Maybe you and I should be Television Export Ministers of our respective countries, so that we may right the egrigious wrongs of our forebearers.

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