With a shiny new desk waiting for him across the hall at the new “Tonight Show” stage, Jimmy Fallon bid his “Late Night” audience adieu on Friday (Feb. 7) with a heartfelt hour that, while less sentimental than Jay Leno’s teary send-off the night before, was lovely, nonetheless.
Fallon kicked off the hour joining Buckwheat Zydeco on their song “On A Night Like This,” before heading into a monologue that included some helpful tips from a few famous friends for guaranteed success at “The Tonight Show.”
- “You get a lot more ratings if you were less clothes.” – Miley Cyrus
- “My only advice to you, Jimmy, is don’t change anything.” – Judd Apatow
- “Jimmy, do not be afraid to go blue. Real f***ing blue.” – Rachel Maddow
- “Do I have any advice for Jimmy? Um, wipe front to back. You do not want to learn that the hard way.” – Sarah Silverman
The show continued along with a few segments that felt as if they wouldn’t be out of place from any other, regular episode of “Late Night.” Fallon signed a few of his trademark thank you notes (Our favorite? “Thank you slip covers for making my dining room chairs look like they’re dressing up like ghosts.”) and then enjoyed a chat with former “SNL” buddy Andy Samberg.
The two reminisced about how instrumental Fallon was in getting Samberg his “SNL” gig after the two met working together on the MTV Movie Awards. The interview veered into the hilariously bizarre when Samberg demanded the tables be turned so he could ask the departing host a few questions, such as “What is time?” (“Time is my father. Fear is my mother.”) and “When do you cry?” (“When I’m awake”).
Once Samberg took his leave, the show got a bit more intimate, with Fallon sitting down with sidekick Steve Higgins. The two shared sweet memories about their relationship before Fallon cued up some of his favorite blooper moments from the past five years. Watching Higgins’ bizarre wardrobe malfunction and Questlove‘s hilarious on-stage water vomit were are lovely trip down memory lane and just plain funny.
It was the show’s final act, however, that truly amped up the sentiment. Fallon was joined by the Muppets on The Band’s “The Weight” in a really lovely and absurd musical moment that highlighted just what so many love about what the host has done with “Late Night” in his tenure.
At the close of the song, Fallon stood up from his place behind the drums, walked out of the studio, down the hall to his new “Tonight Show” studio, opened the door to find his entire staff awaiting him, and burst into celebration as the door closed behind him. Yes, we were left on the outside looking in, but we won’t be waiting for that door to open once more for very long.
“The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” premieres Monday, Feb. 17.
What did you think of Fallon’s “Late Night” farewell?