Now there’s the Conan O’Brien we know and love.
The premiere episode of ‘Conan’ was good, with room for improvement, the second show was a bit stiff but saved by Tom Hanks, and the third one started to seem a little disappointing, but last night, they wound up their first week on an up note and starting to find their comedy footing.
O’Brien’s goofy energy was present from the get-go this time, and even the monologue was interesting, mocking Kanye West by doing a handful of jokes over his rambling press conference and ending with Bruce Jenner, some Alaskan king crabs and a hilarious hoarder welcoming him to basic cable. There was also a brilliantly dopey sketch where Conan and Andy Richter delivered their version of everybody’s local news for those who were missing it by watching their 11pm show – made even funnier by Andy’s wardrobe playing havoc with the green screen effect. It brought to mind the loony old ‘Conan and Andy driving their desk around’ bit they used to do back on ‘Late Night,’ which really did a lot to invoke that old kooky magic to make his longtime fans feel good about what’s to come as the show rolls on.
Michael Cera was also great in complaining about constantly being mistaken for Jesse Eisenberg (who, coincidentally, will be on ‘Conan’ next Thursday and will likely complain about constantly being mistaken for Cera) and with an elaborate story of chasing down a cab with his phone in it on the way to a Too $hort show. Julie Bowen of ‘Modern Family’ was very generous with showing off her gams as well being very hyperactively off-kilter in talking about her kids as Fatty and Skinny being trapped in the dryer, as well as her embarrassing run-in with Cera back when he was 14 where she’s convinced she came across as a creep. Then there was deconstructionist comedian Jon Dore, who is hard to describe, but suffice to say he had a penis drawn on his chest.
These are the kind of zany madcap hijinks we expect out of these guys, and if this last show is any indication, they’ve finally shaken off the rust of their long layoff, and we’re in for some good times with our funny, nerdy TV pals.