Conan will not do his show at 12:05 following Leno

Conan O'Brien today released a statement saying he will not do The Tonight Show at 12:05. You'll recall that in the wake of low ratings for both shows, NBC had cancelled Jay Leno's 10 pm talk show, and had introduced a plan to get Leno back into the 11:35 timeslot. One option on the table was for Conan to just move his show to 12:05, and then displacing the rest of NBC's late night lineup by one half hour. But that will now not happen, and so presumably NBC will simply air The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, followed by Jimmy Fallon and Carson Daly. Speculation now turns to what Conan will do next.

I agree with the growing number of voices who are suggesting that this could be a great opportunity for Conan to go and do something more creatively satisfying. Adam Sternbergh of New York Magazine suggests he do so at Fox, while the Boston Globe's Matthew Gilbert says Comedy Central would be an even better choice. Sternbergh's move would be more financially sound, but Gilbert's idea is intriguing from a viewer's perspective. Comedy Central could give him the midnight time slot with The Daily Show and The Colbert Report as his lead-ins and, one assumes, more autonomy. I would watch that.
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