I’m on Team Coco!

On January 22, Conan O’ Brien bade farewell to his 7-month run in “The Tonight Show”, making way for Jay Leno to take back his old time slot in NBC. As of this writing, Conan is a free agent and free as a bird.

“Every comedian dreams of hosting the ‘Tonight’ show and, for seven months, I got to,” he says. “I did it my way, with people I love, and I do not regret a second. I’ve had more good fortune than anyone I know, and if our next gig is doing a show in a 7-Eleven parking lot, we’ll find a way to make it fun.”

Of course, he quickly adds, “I don’t want to do it in a 7-Eleven parking lot.”

I started watching Conan, Leno and Letterman not too long ago. My husband, on the other hand, has always been a fan of Canon and Letterman. He would always tell me that comparing the 3 late-night comedians, Jay Leno always seemed to pale in comparison.

After a few months of regularly watching the 3 comedians and gaining a better understanding of their brand of comedy, I started becoming a Coco fan. He is a gifted comedian. Au naturel. No pretensions. Upbeat, quirky and downright witty.

Jay Leno was a hit-or-miss. On some days, he was hilarious. On others, lukewarm. On some, downright awful. Some describe Leno to be “old” and “dated”. Well, I don’t really know what about Jay I didn’t like that much… maybe sometimes it just felt like he was always trying too hard.

But Coco… Coco always just resonated more with me. It must be the red head with a humongous forehead. The unrelenting humor. The gift of gab and charisma that never falters. I don’t really know.

Here in Manila, we get to watch the “Tonight Show” roughly 12 hours after it airs in the US. That means less the time difference, we also get to watch it at around 11:00pm on weekdays through JackTV.

Conan always brought such a positive force into our home. On bad days, Conan was always a temporary escape from the humdrum of surviving in the urban jungle. Every single show I’ve watched has made me alternate between smirking, chuckling, giggling, or outrightly roaring with laughter. It wasn’t enough to permanently wipe the cobwebs off my mind… but it was always enough to somehow give me a lighter step for a couple of hours. For my husband, it was one of the very rare few shows that could send him into fits of uncontrollable laughter. And that’s saying a lot.

All Coco wanted was to have fun, and to bring fun and laughter to millions of viewers around the world. At the end of the day, that’s all we really need to get through this thing called life. It’s people like him who teaches us that we can actually choose to just…  laugh at the world, laugh at our problems, laugh away the blues.

And so… although it still elicits a tug in my heart everytime I think about it (my husband spent several hours on our couch the other night batting pangs of intense sadness with the thought of bidding farewell to the man who brought him joy since he was still a young boy), I know this is not the end.  It can’t be the end.

Coco, if you ever get to read this, the world still needs you. So you’d better be back soon. We’ll be waiting.


“I hate cynicism. It’s my least favorite quality and it doesn’t lead anywhere. Nobody in life gets exactly what they thought they were going to get. But if you work really hard and you’re kind, amazing things will happen.” – Conan’s Swan Song.

Watch more here.

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Gleek!

Yes, I admit it.

Over the holidays, I have become a certified GLEEK.

It started with just a few glimpses of the show on JackTV. The episode I watched fully was the “Jump” episode with the dozen of mattresses as pay-off for doing a free commercial for mattresses. (See, that wasn’t a spoiler, was it?)

Anyhow, within the realm of a world riddled with problems and dilemmas, this has become my moment of escape. So easy to escape from the real world when you can escape for 45 minutes into the  cheap thrill that is beholding the wonders of a dozen teenagers singing and dancing to excellent choreography; with the adolescent problems of high school kids in an era filled with ambiguities, to boot.

Besides, I like music. And I love watching people dance. (I don’t dance myself, you see.)  Of course, my husband snickers in our living room while I shut the door to the bedroom and put the TV volume close to maximum when I indulge in continuous episodes of GLEE. But heck, it’s my cheap thrill.

For good, light entertainment at the end of a long, tiring day – I highly recommend an episode of GLEE to lift the spirits. Enjoy!

Dollhouse

Since my husband introduced me to the wonderful worlds created by Joss Whedon through his novel creations Buffy, the Vampire Slayer; Angel, the demon with a soul; and the crew of Firefly, a free-wheeling ship that visits many worlds and galaxies in one mission or another – I’ve been an avid fan of the Whedonverse.

When Dollhouse first came into my knowledge, I’ve been eagerly anticipating watching the show. It hit pirated DVD stores in Manila several months ago when there were still just a few episodes. Hubby and I waited til there were at least more than 12 episodes… after all, knowing my addictive personality, I can’t abide getting a one-episode taste of a show I love and not feel like I’ve been deprived of something terrific.

So two weekends ago, we finally watched our first few episodes.

We’ve heard many conflicting reviews about the show. For the most part, reviews were mostly so-so. It was okay to most, fantastic for some, but there was a general populace who didn’t like it.

I loved it, and I love it!

It’s a gem of Science Fiction. To imagine a world where it’s entirely possible to wipe out a person’s true personality and replace it with a temporary one that enables that person to be anything we want him to be.… true genius!

That in itself is a strong enough motive for me to keep watching the show (I’m a closet geek at heart).

But then if you factor in the cast of the show, with Eliza Dushku playing the often disturbing role of Echo; Olivia Williams as the stiff upper-lipped Englishwoman who runs the Dollhouse; and Fran Kranz, an homage, I suspect, to the endearingly annoying character of Andrew in the last 2 seasons of Buffy – then there’s more than enough to keep my eyed wide open even in the wee hours of the morning. Which is a big thing for a sleepyhead like me.

And then of course there’s the evocative, charming and engaging screen writing and directing of Whedon’s regular crew of production staff. It was one of the things I loved most about Buffy and Angel. And now, one of the things I love most about Dollhouse.

Not to mention the fact that even if it’s Science Fiction, it’s placed at a moment in time much like our own. A world of science; a world of progress; of materialism and consumerism; of greed, corruption and secrecy. It’s a world of terrorists, assassins, serial killers and secret agents. If you think about it, the only difference between real life today and this show, is this new technology. Who knows how many years or decades from now when this won’t be a work of fiction anymore?

So if you’re in for some unusual but gripping science fiction drama, sit back and relax with an episode or two of Dollhouse. Grab a doll of yours along the way.