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The story says Leno will do a half hour show at 11:35 as a lead in to Conan at 12:05. That works for me. Leno's monologue and a few bits are good. A lot of the new stuff he came up with for 10:00 is terrible. A half hour show of good material is about all Leno has left since leaving The Tonight Show. I'm also guessing that Leno will leave NBC after Conan's ratings get better and/or his contract is up.
 

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For NBC network execs, Leno is always a 'safe bet'. He's well-liked, and while his jokes may not be edgy, they stay away from controversy. There's a reason why the Tonight Show consistently beat the Late Show as far as ratings go.

Letterman may be wittier, and Conan more off-the-wall, but no one beats Leno in mass appeal. There are a great many old geezers that watch television ;)
 

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Wow 30 minutes? With commercials?
They are really going to have to trim a lot of stuff.
1 guest? No guests and just some stand up?
 

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Putting Leno at 10pm was a poor move by NBC so I would not be surprised if he was axed.

I think going back to 11:35pm would only happen if Conan's numbers are significantly weaker than expected.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Well, the audience for the tonight show has dropped by 50%. The Conan experiment has failed.
 

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Well has the 50% drop on Conan been all his fault?

If Leno had performed better then the News would have performed better and ultimately Conan would have performed better.

Again, I think the original move was dumb but I don't think Conan is fully to blame for the drop of 50%.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I think NBC is merely looking at the numbers and are disappointed. Leno has been a poor lead in for the news and the local affiliates have been bitching from day 1.

I guess this has a chain reaction with the news being a poor lead in for The Tonight Show.

NBC does not want to lose Leno (can you imagine what would happen to the Tonight Show ratings if that happened?) to FOX.

I can see Leno staying at 11:30 with O'brian's relationship being a little murkier.
 

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It's moreso the local affiliates who are disappointed about it and forcing NBC's hand in this case. It would be easier for NBC to keep Jay Leno on weeknights @ 10pm this year, and start to phase him out next year.

NBC apparently has roughly 19 new shows in development for next year's schedule at this point, but I don't think any would be ready to debut after the Olympics. So if they move Jay Leno back to 11:30pm, they would need to find shows to fill those 5 hours of primetime a week that would be freed up. I'm not sure reruns of old NBC shows or old movies could fill the void and produce comparable or better ratings numbers to help bolster the lead-in to the local affiliates' newscasts. As well, if Jay Leno moves back to 11:30pm, what happens to Jimmy Fallon's and Carson Daly's shows? I think it creates more problems than it solves at this point in time.

Also, no disrespect Hugh, but I don't think there is a cause and effect between the disappointing ratings of The Jay Leno Show and The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien, respectively. Conan O'Brien was already struggling in his timeslot against David Letterman in June, well before Jay Leno's show even debuted.

Ultimately, NBC was caught between a rock and a hard place in 2004. They were afraid that Conan O'Brien would walk away from their network when his contract expired, so offering him the Tonight Show was a way to keep him in the fold. The only problem was that Jay Leno ended up still being the #1 leader in late-night when it came time for the transition in 2009, and consequently, NBC didn't want to lose him to another network -- which is how the Jay Leno Show came to be.

Six months after the transition, it's clear that both are struggling in their respective timeslots. However it would be pretty costly to terminate their relationship with either host, as both have a large poison pill clause built-in to their contract. In the end, NBC is in no better a position now in 2010 than they were in 2004.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I was wondering why NBC was only offering Leno a 30 minute show during late night. It seems that the contract with Conan allows NBC to move the show to 12:05AM without penalty. If they moved it later Conan with be entitled to compensation.

So, it's all about the $$$ with NBC.

It also seems that NBC has stated: take 12:05AM or leave. Fox is interested while ABC has said thanks but no thanks.

If Conan leaves then Leno gets an hour show.
 

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Maybe Leno should just become Conan's sidekick. I gave up on late night shows a long time ago. They are ok if you watch them half asleep, but I don't watch TV in bed any more.
 

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Does anyone know if NBC actually has other content in the pipeline to replace the five hours/week in the 10pm slot, or are were going to get 5 more hours of reruns a week until the fall?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
They have many mid-season replacements in the pipeline. I guess we have to wait and find out for sure. You don't pull 5 hours of primetime programming without a plan.
 

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I keep reading that it was the local NBC affiliates that were complaining because their numbers dropped for their local news after the Leno show ends at 11 p.m. Wouldn't many viewers still stay on the same channel to watch their local news presuming it was up to snuff. If there was a marked decrease in the viewing audience then maybe they should make some improvements in their news department.
 
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