Jay Leno Says Goodbye To Late Night TV

Jay Leno hosts NBC's Tonight show for the final time Friday. He has been on the job for 17 years. Leno took over from Johnny Carson, who retired in 1992 after three decades behind the desk. He'll host a prime-time show this fall for NBC.

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(Soundbite of TV show, "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno")

Mr. EDD HALL (Announcer, "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno"): It's the "Tonight Show with Jay Leno."

GREENE: Tonight is Jay Leno's final night as host of NBC's "The Tonight Show." He's been on the job for 17 years.

(Soundbite of music, "Tonight Show Theme")

GREENE: Leno took over from Johnny Carson, who retired in 1992 after three decades behind the desk. Leno kept many of those "Tonight Show" traditions alive, including that opening monologue.

(Soundbite of TV show, "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno")

Mr. JAY LENO (Host, "The Tonight Show"): Well, President Barack Obama is in Los Angeles tonight for a huge fundraiser at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. Actually, one awkward moment: As Obama was entering the Beverly Hilton, he bumped into John Edwards, who was sneaking out.

(Soundbite of laughter)

GREENE: Leno also added some features, including "Jay Walking," where he asked ordinary people on the streets seemingly simple questions.

(Soundbite of TV show, "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno")

Mr. LENO: What street is the New York Stock Exchange on?

Unidentified Woman: New York Boulevard.

Mr. LENO: New York Boulevard.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Mr. LENO: What two animals are the symbols of the stock market?

Unidentified Woman: The snake and the mouse.

Mr. LENO: The snake and the mouse.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Mr. LENO: So would we be in a snake market, or the mouse market?

Unidentified Woman: Mouse.

Mr. LENO: Mouse market.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Unidentified Woman: We're not doing so good.

GREENE: Now when Johnny Carson signed off, he made no mention of Jay Leno. Tonight's "Tonight Show" will be different. Jay Leno's guest will be the next host, a once-obscure writer for the animated series "The Simpsons."

(Soundbite of TV show, "Late Night with Conan O'Brien")

Mr. JOEL GODARD (Announcer, "Late Night with Conan O'Brien"): From NBC studios in New York, it's "Late Night with Conan O'Brien."

GREENE: Conan O'Brien. He begins his "Tonight Show" stint on Monday.

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