Conan O’Brien Gets Ready for Work on His First Day as David Letterman’s Replacement on ‘Late Night’ in 1993

Late Night With Conan O'Brien

On September 13 1993, a very young Conan O’Brien made his debut as the replacement for the departing David Letterman on the NBC Late Night franchise. This 25 year old episode first episode shows O’Brien first getting ready for work and walking through the streets of New York City to a mounting chorus of warnings to be as good as his predecessor. O’Brien almost gave into the pressure, but once onstage in front of a really appreciative crowd, he fully acknowledged that he was still learning on the job.

I’m trying to run a show here, I’m new. Come on!

John Goodman, Drew Barrymore, and Tony Randall were the first guests on the show and were quite gracious in their own respective ways. Actor George Wendt made a funny cameo during which he leg wrestled John Goodman and Bob Costas offered a hilarious preview of a segment from his show Later With Bob Costas

In celebration of his 25th anniversary on-air, Conan announced that he will be releasing the entire archive in January 2019.

Coming January 2019: The complete online archive of “Late Night with Conan O’Brien.”

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails.