Friday, August 21, 2009
I've been meaning to watch more Conan since he started on the "Tonight Show" spot. Today I watched this episode and I'm really happy, as a fan of "Late Night," with everything about the new show.
First of all, as was always the case, Conan's bad jokes during the monologue not only fail to hamper its humorous nature, but arguably increase it. At one point in this episode's monologue, even Andy turns on Conan, so awful and trite are the jokes. The opening showcases the hilarious nature of Conan's face, body, expressions, and self-loathing character so much that I wonder if the writers don't intentionally write bad or overly broad jokes just because Conan bombing is always funnier.
The bigger budget of the "Tonight Show" has only helped to amplify the effect of "Late Night." Said effect creates the illusion of living in Conan's mind and seeing the world through the eyes of someone completely pop-culture-obsessed and socially awkward-- someone who sees everyone, even celebrities, and especially himself, as grotesque or otherwise ripe for mockery. Therefore, the writers and producers of both Conan shows have made a sort of more mass-culture-oriented version of "Pee-Wee's Playhouse:" a hyper-campy, meta-referential sideshow that is both beautiful and disturbing.