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Jay Leno is still taking potshots at Conan O'Brien
In an interview about his impending retirement, Leno slips in one more not-so-subtle reference to the 2009 Tonight Show scandal
 

Tomorrow night will be Jay Leno's last time hosting The Tonight Show, but with the clock running down, Leno managed to find room for one last jab at the last person who was supposed to replace him.

"Do you remember the first time, Jay, that you thought, 'It is possible that I may become the host of The Tonight Show'?" asked Matt Lauer in an interview on The Today Show. "That was five years ago," joked Leno, to the cackles of new Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon and Lauer. "Oh, the first time," Leno said. "I thought you said the second time. I'm sorry, I'm sorry, cut."

Yes, that was Leno making yet another joke at the expense of Conan O'Brien, who has been an occasional punching bag for Leno since he took over The Tonight Show after O'Brien's short-lived tenure in 2009.

But the Today Show interview wasn't totally spent beating the red-haired dead horse of Conan O'Brien. Leno took the opportunity to reminisce about his almost unbroken 22-year stretch as Tonight Show host, including his favorite moment as host: When President Obama stopped by for an interview. "You told a group of young people that broccoli was your favorite food," said Leno to Obama in a clip from the interview. "Now, lying to voters is one thing. Lying to children…"

Yes, that's the kind of dad joke we'll all have to live without now that Leno is vacating The Tonight Show. (A recent study of Leno's tenure found that nine of his 10 favorite targets were politicians. Bill Clinton was the target of 4,607 jokes alone.) In the Today Show clip, Leno's producer claimed that he's even funnier off the air, but Fallon promised "the stage is [Leno's]" if he ever wants to stop by for a visit — and knowing Leno, that time may come sooner rather than later.

 
Scott Meslow is the entertainment editor and film and television critic for TheWeek.com. He has written about film and television at publications including The AtlanticPOLITICO Magazine, and Vulture.

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