Last night Jay Leno took his final bows on the stage of The Tonight Show. Jay altered his typical monologue to be more geared towards a look back and jokes about his 22 year tenure as host of the late night talk show. His final guest was his first guest, Mr Billy Crystal. Billy gave a touching tribute, albeit it in typical Billy Crystal style. He recounted some of Jay prior current news monologue jokes like,
“When it was announced recently that America’s No. 1 terrorist had been captured, who told us it was Justin Bieber? You did.”
“When Hurricane Katrina hit, who told us they should change the name of the Gulf of Mexico to the Persian Gulf so Bush would send troops faster? You did.”
“Let me get this – you’re moving to 9 o’clock?” which got Jay giggling!
With song and dance and just the right amount of classic humor. Billy paid a homage to the Sound of Music by tailoring the classic Von Trap Family song “So Long… Farewell” and having some stars join him to sing personalized lyrics to Jay,
Jack Black sang “So long, farewell auf wiedersehen, my dear. If Fallon tanks you’ll be back here next year.”,
Kim Kardashian: “So long, farewell, last night I told my folks, ‘Now I won’t be butt of Leno’s jokes’.” as she pointed at her own butt.
Sheryl Crow: “So long, farewell, I give a little wave. But not for Jay – I want to get on Dave.”
Chris Paul: “So long, farewell, you won the latenight race. But I don’t care, the Clips are in first place.”
The Big Bang Theory star Jim Parsons: “So long, farewell, we’ve watched you and we’re weary. Your great success is called The Big Chin Theory.”
Carol Burnett: “So long, farewell. I’m here so what the hell. For your last show, I’ll do the Tarzan Yell. Aiaiaiaiaia!”
Oprah Winfrey: “So long, farewell, you really raised the bar. If you were me, you’d buy them all a car!”
Jay was not privy to many of the bits panned for him. The producers surprised him with a taped segment in which several celebrities were asked what they thought Jay should do next. Kevin Bacon suggested he take up painting, showing his own latest effort, which was a full-body nude of Jay — a nod to the time former President George W. Bush was a recently guest of Leno’s surprised him with a portrait that he’d painted. (Awkward!)
President Obama made an appearance saying “You made a lot of jokes about me over the years – I’m not upset,” said President Obama, adding the he was appointing Jay Leno as “my new Ambassador to Antarctica. Hope you’ve got a coat funny man!” which made me snort out loud at that one!!!
Bob Costas reminisced, noting he too had been replaced by someone younger “I was once the host of a late night show myself,” “that no talent Greg Kinnear.” “You have to learn to deal with it” adding ” hello Doctor!” as he reaches for a giant bottle of Jack Daniels taking a swig and ending “You’re gonna be fine.” Matt Damon, Mark Wahlberg and Miley Cyrus rounded out the list of celebrity clips.
Uber country star was there to belt out Jays favorite song for him “The Dance” which Garth pays Jay a touching tribute to his kindness and friendship.
It was a beautiful send off for an icon of comedy such as Jay Leno. He has hosted the Tonight Show for 22 years and has had many memorable moments throughout his career. He is, was and always will be a class act. His final words of farewell were heart wrenching, touching and sad mixed with Jays own brand of classy humor. He will be a part of the future landscape of The Tonight Show as Jimmy Fallen steps up to take the reigns of this behemoth of the late night airways. I am pretty sure he will be tugging on the ear of Jay for advice and guidance. To Jimmy Fallon I wish you good luck, as you have some large shoes to fill such as the likes of Steve Allan, Jack Paar, the legendary Mr. Johnny Carson, Jay Leno, Conan O’Brien and again Jay Leno. Now the torch passes to you Mr Fallon. Use your power wisely! 😉
To Mr Jay Leno… We will see you again I am sure. Your talent is to big to be confined to retirement. You will be forever remembered as one of the great hosts of The Tonight Show. Your comedy and your humanitarianism efforts will stand as a monument to your well chosen path. Cheers and best of luck in your future endeavors!
I leave you with the final moments of the late night icon’s final tearful farewell.