Friday, February 20th was Conan O'Brien's last night as the host of one of Common Sense Dancing's favorite television programs, NBC's Late Night.
This summer, Conan will take over from Jay Leno as the host of the Tonight Show. I watched Conan throughout high school, college, and law school, and, between Late Night and The Simpsons - which, I should add, for which Conan used to write and produce - it is possible that no person has shaped my sense of humor more than Conan O'Brien. His show was always creative, and had a certain type of improvisational, only-in-New-York energy that I desperately hope he will be able to replicate in Burbank, on the Tonight Show.
In his final broadcast from Rockefeller Center, Conan was everything we hoped he would be - funny, gracious, and nostalgic without being maudlin. The show featured replays of a couple of "greatest hits"-type sketches, and guests (Will Farrell, Andy Richter, The White Stripes, Abe Vigoda, John Mayer) we genuinely wanted to see again. It was a wonderful hour of television.
Conan has said that, in his opinion, the best bit he ever did on his show was the sketch he filed with some 1860s baseball re-enactors on Long Island, who play baseball with authentic period rules, equipment, and costumes. I watched this when it originally aired, and have watched it on YouTube a number of times since then, and its as funny now as it was the first time I saw it:
What's your favorite Conan O'Brien bit? Vote for your favorites in the comments section, and I'll try to track down the clips on YouTube and put them up in future posts.
Update: The embedded video has been fixed.