Jay Leno Says Goodbye and Goodnight to 'Tonight Show'

May 30, 2009 By:
Jay Leno Says Goodbye and Goodnight to 'Tonight Show'

Jay Leno ended his final Tonight Show on Friday with some of his favorite guests-- Monica Lewinsky, Michael Jackson, and Bill Clinton.

The late night King delivered one of his funniest monologues to date, and scored record numbers in the meanwhile.

"When we started this show," Leno told the crowd in the standing-room-only studio in Burbank, "my hair was black and the president was white. When we started the show, Jon and Kate were both eight."

Leno's successor Conan O'Brien quietly sat on the couch next to him as Leno joked about how he was going to "a secluded spot where no one can find me – NBC prime time."

Friday's episode marked the 3,775th Tonight Show with Jay Leno, so the crowd wanted to make sure he got a great finale, by giving him a stand ovation.

According to a study from the Center for Media and Public Affairs, since taking over the show in 1992, Leno has made over 33,000 jokes about political figures.

He made 4,400 jokes about Bill Clinton's affair with Monica Lewinsky, 2,999 jokes about George W. Bush, 737 jokes about O.J. Simpson, and 488 jokes about Michael Jackson.

Unlike Leno, O'Brien directed most of his teasing toward Bush.

Leno's new hour-long comedy show will premiere on NBC at the 10 p.m. timeslot on a date to be announced in September. Did you catch the last episode of The Tonight Show? What were your thoughts on the shows finale?