Howard Stern slams Jay Leno's return to 'The Tonight Show'

Howard Stern went on CBS’ The Early Show to give his reaction to Jay Leno’s return to The Tonight Show. Did Stern have an opinion? Um, yeah: He called Leno “a thief” — “he lifts bits directly from my show — ‘Jay-Walking’ was lifted from my radio show!” — and an NBC “lapdog” who “sabotaged” Conan O’Brien. Stern said Leno “makes me want to vomit”:

As you can see, CBS Early Show host Harry Smith — a heck of a good sport and fast with the questions, I should say — was, in the face of Stern’s barrage of insults to Leno, forced to actually defend the host of a rival network, doing his job as an interviewer by pointing out that the decision to reinstall Leno “comes down to money — Leno was spectacularly successful [as The Tonight Show host],” Smith observes.

Granted, CBS had little to lose by allowing Howard to let off steam: Stern praised the network’s own David Letterman extravagantly. Still, this was pretty vehement stuff for usually calm morning TV.

Smith also got Stern to comment on the American Idol-judge rumor: “If they gave me a $100 million, I’d be insane not to take that. I would of course consider it.”

I must admit I missed this segment when it aired on Tuesday (thanks to EW subscriber Mark Twomey for calling my attention to it). You have to admit, love him or hate him, Howard Stern really heats up the cool medium of TV really fast.

What’s your reaction?

Comments (111 total) Add your comment
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  • Rhonda

    I LOVE Howard!!! And I know a great deal of my NFL Cheerleader colleagues do as well.

    • Steve

      Howard said what intelligent people in the industry think, and like he said, they don’t have the balls to say so.

      • Lay Jeno

        I didn’t even know Howard Stern was still alive let alone still on the radio. His relevancy is zero.

      • Nshi

        Cheerleaders=Airheads

      • DUSTIN

        HOOHOOHOO THEY’RE RIPPING ME OFF ROBIN! I CREATED TALK SHOWS AND BEING OVERPAID! HOHOHOHO. HE HIRES AN ENTIRE STAFF THAT DOES NOTHING BUT KISSES HIS ASS. HE DOESNT LET ANYONE ACTUALLY CONTRIBUTE TO HIS SHOW BECAUSE THAT WOULD TAKE AWAY FROM HIS SPOTLIGHT. OH….AND THE AMAZING THING IS THIS. HE SH*TS ON PEOPLE LIKE OPRAH FOR RIPPING OFF SIRIUS/XM, BUT WHAT IS HOWARD STERN DOING FOR THE COMPANY THAT PAID HIM (JUST HIM, NOT HIS STAFF, FARRELL, BUBBA, ETC) AT LEAST 300 MILLION DOLLARS FOR 5 YEARS? HE WORKS 4 DAYS A WEEK(200 DAYS A YEAR) MINUS OF COURSE 2 WEEKS FOR CHRISTMAS, 1-2 WEEKS IN JULY, WEEK IN JANUARY, AND PROBABLY AT LEAST ANOTHER 3 WEEKS. IN SHORT, IF HE TOOK 6 WEEKS OFF A YEAR THAT WOULD PUT HIM WORKING 176 DAYS A YEAR. 300 MILLION EVERY YEAR FOR 5 YEARS WOULD BE 60 MILLION A YEAR. 60 MILLION DIVIDED BY 176 IS $340,909 A DAY!!!!!!!! WHAT A F*CKING RIP OFF. DIE ARTIE DIE

      • DUSTIN

        OH AND HE IS AN IRRELEVANT DOU*CHE. ROBIN IS A HOLE. TELL’EM FRED. OPIE AND ANTHONY AND RON AND FEZ FIVE DAYS A WEEK!!!!!

      • @ DUSTIN

        There’s a key to the left of the “A” key called Caps Lock. Do us all a favor and start using it.
        Then you can state your assinine opinions.
        Did Howard have your sister ride the sybian or something?

      • DUSTIN

        assinine opinions? I’m pertty sure the numbers speak for themselves. Oh, and if you reply you dont have to say @Dustin. just a tip.

      • ^

        Wow.
        You can add, too.
        Jealous much?

      • @dustin

        Who 5 days a week? Are they so much more relevant that you have to advertise for them on random comment boxes?

    • PERRY MASON

      Yelling poopie, doody, and ta-tas heats up the medium too. Howard is simplistic and immature.

      • Ryan

        You obviously don’t listen to him, Perry. Yes, there is sex, fart jokes, porn stars….but a large majority of the rest of the show is his views on the world….which are for the most part correct.

      • Lay Jeno

        His views on the world can’t be “correct” genius, they’re his views, his opinions.

      • Holly

        Ryan, you are hilarious. Yes, how unfair of us all to just focus on the “sex, fart jokes and porn stars”, and ignore the sensitive side of Howard Stern…

    • Patrick Aaron Presley

      Howard Stern has his finger on the pulse of all the personalities in the media. Leno fans presently have the wool pulled over their eyes. Wake Up – Jay is a worm.

      • Spikeit

        Howard Stern has his finger on the pulse? More like he keeps his finger in an azz…..his own, the worthless douche bag.

  • sam

    I am not a Leno fan (I much prefer Dave and Craig), but come on–you don’t put the story about Leno’s great ratings on your front page, but Stern gets top placement? Give it up, why don’t you–Leno is back and he is already number one. You are starting to look ridiculous.

    • Brian

      They took our jobs! Derp de derp.

      • Nshi

        Please remove your racist comment.

    • Gabby

      The Stern article got top placement because it was just added to the website.

    • tommy

      Howard is one of the realest people Ive never met!! Ive been listening for years and i feel like i know the man. All you whiners have no idea who Howard Stern is, you just follow the rest of the lemmings into whatever direction they push you in. Any idiot would understand Leno being number one at the moment. Uh…did you see how many people watched the Winter Olympics with Leno ads virtually everywhere??? That and the simple fact people are watching only now out of curiousity(like me) even though they wish him to fail? Quit being soo naive and don’t make assumptions based on your ignorance.

      • hot chick

        You DO NOT know the man. I knew him as he was coming up. He was more creative then. Now he is just a w h o r e.

      • Lay Jeno

        Tommy you do realize that Leno was #1 for many, many years before this right? Who’s the naive, ignorant one now?

      • Nshi

        Please remove your racist and homophobic comment.

  • i’m a lady

    oh howard!! love him.

    • I’m a real lady

      If you were a real lady you would most likely despise him. He despises you.

      • ^

        dumb @$$

      • BLM

        I love Howard too and I’m a lady. Howard in no way despises women–women do what they want on his show. If they want to show tatas, they do. He doesn’t make them. Howard is real, honest, and is passionate about his opinions. He’s also a great interviewer and an entertaining radio personality.

  • Kate

    Howard is awesome!

  • Edmonton Girl

    Howard Stern is a spectacularly awful person in every possible way. And I don’t think Jay Leno is funny at all.

  • JD

    I’m not as vehemently against Jay Leno as Howard Stern is, but I do think that Leno should have just walked away from NBC after he was done with “The Tonight Show.” As Stern says, he could have gone to another network and been successful over there if he was that upset about not having a show anymore. I miss Conan, and I would like to have seen how well Conan would have done without a bad lead-in from Jay and with a couple more years hosting “The Tonight Show” under his belt.

    • alexa

      Leno was never “done” with the Tonight Show. NBC forced him to retire early so that they could give the show to Conan. In his interview with Oprah, Leno said that he asked NBC several times if he could get out of his contract and they would not let him go. It wasn’t as easy as you make it for him to walk away from NBC and walk over to another network!

      • Jessica

        Yes it was. His contract didn’t make him NBC’s b@tch. The thing that NBC refused to waive was the non-compete clause (Leno himself said as much). He would have just had to wait a little while to go to a new network, and NBC would have had to pay him through the nose when he left. THAT is really SOOO awful? Reportedly $100M and a little while off the air? Yep…poor Jay’s hands were tied…

  • junierizzle

    Say what you want about Stern, but what he says is true. Leno sabotaged Conan. That’s why everybody hates Leno.
    It would be no big deal if COCO failed on his own. No one would blame NBC if they brought back LENO.
    COCO never got a fair shot.

    • Lay Jeno

      Stern’s just jealous that I, er I mean Jay, has more money than he does. And a hotter wife.

  • Moi

    I’m out of the loop, but is Howard getting dumped by Sirius or something?? He seems especially desperate lately for headlines, what with all the AI comments and digs, and now the Leno stuff. Is he not getting enough attention? And why would anyone really care what this idiot has to say about anything other than skanky women?

    • Gator

      Your feeble, biased comments prove your ignorance. Howard Stern is a TRUE original (unlike Jay Leno), and the reason he is regularly sought after for pop-culture commentary is because he is witty, intelligent, and hilarious. At least have the integrity to listen to his show before you completely disparage him. By the way, since he all but put satellite radio on the map (by himself!), I would say that Sirius is desperate to retain his services, and not the other way around.

      • Janie

        Word, Gator!

      • Moi

        What an idiot! “Your feeble, biased comments prove your ignorance.” I have had the “integrity” to listen to the radio show and watch the tv show. Both are misogynistic trash. I’ve even read the guy’s autobiography. I can “disparage” him if I want. Before you jump to conclusions without any evidence, I suggest you buy a brain!

      • Lay Jeno

        You mean that biography that talked about how much he loved his wife and how he’d never leave her for some young hot chick?

      • Lay Jeno

        autobiography

      • ^

        His wife left him, dolt.
        Try something called checking your facts before you spout stupidity.

      • Lay Jeno

        I can’t imagine why his wife left him…..

    • s

      Howard is the man. People LISTEN to his show and they seek him out, not the reverse. He’s been talking about AI for years. Any press, he just really stepped into, and he’s enjoying it, who could blame him. The early show contacted HIM for that interview, to challenge Leno for their man Dave. Nothing irks me more than people who make comments about Howard (“he’s gross” etc.) who don’t listen! Howard is a genius. Peace.

  • Chris

    I happen to love Howard but even if you are not a fan nobody can argue that what he said about Leno is false. Jay is famous for stealing bits and most of them are from Howard’s show. Long live the Stern Show!

  • Chris

    Moi
    He is in the last year of his contract. However he has not decided if he will continue or not. The media started the whole American Idol thing and he has simply been commenting on all of the ridiculous stories. Your skanky women comment proves that you have never really listened to his show. Dislike him if you want but don’t just make general complaints on something you know nothing about.

    • Moi

      Apparently you again misread my previous reply to you. I know plenty about Howard Stern, as my previous reply shows. Guess you’re a typical listener???

  • Nathan

    Every single word that came out of Howard Stern’s mouth is 100% true, God bless you Howard, we need guys like you in the entertainment biz. Oh and go f**k your mother Leno!

  • Kat

    You are as classy as Howard Stern -in other words, you are not classy at all.

  • Chappel

    Howard Stern is big crybaby.

    • Janie

      Another idiot who obviously never listens to the show.

      • MK

        Ive listened to howard for 15 years. He is a big crybaby sometimes. He has claimed that American Idol ripped him off. His “I invented everything entertaining ever” stance sucks. Still will listen to him for as long as hes on the air though. Nobodys funnier.

      • Lay Jeno

        The only idiots are the ones who do listen to this sophomoric man child.

    • Jessica

      He is kind of beating a dead horse, as he’s been talking about this for weeks now. However, I would probably be PO’ed too if someone had stolen a bit that I’d worked hard to create. When I first saw Jaywalking on a commercial, I immediately thought “Isn’t that like Stern’s bit?” I’m sure Leno thought that his audience is so incredibly different that no one would realize it was a ripoff, but, of course, when confronted, Jay tried to claim that something similar was done in the early Tonight Show days. Doubtful as he didn’t present any supporting footage, and because people being mocked for their stupidity wouldn’t have flown in those days. But, anyway you slice it, he’s still admitting re-using material rather than innovating. And, at this point, the Jaywalking is all BS, so how is it even funny? You know most of the people answering those questions are intentionally answering incorrectly to try and make it on TV. In this country, the vast majority of people would do anything to get on TV, even for 20 seconds. (See reality TV as proof).

  • Sally in Chicago

    Casey was channeling Hendrix and Prince. Nice.

  • Jim

    Howard deserves all the respect in the world! He is an honest man who admits when he makes mistakes. Quit judging him negatively simply because the media spins it that way. He’s a MAN, not a pervert. If you actually LISTENED to a couple shows from start to finish, then you would understand this! Love him, cuz you definitely have no reason to hate him. WE ARE ALL like him in one way or another!!

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