"I'm honored. Thank you very much for the compliment," replies Johnny.
"You've been here a few years now, and I know we've talked about it before, but do you think you'd be willing to do the Tonight Show here in Heaven?" God asks.
After thinking it over for a few moments, Johnny replies, "Why not. Ed (McMahon) just arrived on Tuesday. I'm sure he'd go for it. And I'm sure a number of people here would want to appear on the program. George Burns, Jack Benny, McLean Stevenson, would make good guests."
"I was thinking," God continues, "you can get any star you want any time. Allow Me to book your guests for the first show."
"You know best," says Johnny. "I leave it up to You."
So on the First ever Tonight Show, Live from Heaven, after reuniting with his long time producer Fred de Cordova, and his right hand man Ed McMahon, after doing the monologue, and the first of what should be many Carnac skits, Johnny introduces his first guests, Farrah Fawcett, and Michael Jackson...
In all seriousness, they always say that deaths come in threes. This has been a very tough week as three celebrities who I grew up watching passed away within the span of 48 hours. Ed McMahon, even with his recent troubles, still seemed as if he was in good health and spirits (heck, he even did the commercial with MC Hammer for a "gold-for-cash" company). When I first heard on the news that he had died, my first thought was that Johnny wanted to get the show going again. Hence the conversation that began this post.
I had read online that Farrah Fawcett was not in good health, that she was battling cancer and that her health was rapidly deteriorating. While I will never forget watching her in Charlie's Angels (reruns...I'm not that old), she will probably be more remembered if not for her charity work, but for being the poster girl that EVERY young man in the 70's had to have in their possession. Some guys might still have it somewhere now...(ahem...)
As with all major news, I first heard about Michael Jackson's passing on a baseball card message board (because where else would I get this kind of news...) I had to check some credible sources first (MSN was my first choice) and they said that he had just suffered from cardiac arrest and was headed for the hospital. Moments later, it was announced that he died.
Whoa. The King of Pop. Dead at 50. I had heard on the radio that he was holding concerts in London next month, and that they were having contests to send people over there to watch him perform. The news said that these concerts sold out in minutes. Now what's going to happen? What of the children? What of his ex-wife (not Lisa Marie, she's doing fine...) and mother of two of her kids? As with many children of the late 70's and early 80's, I grew up with his music. From "Don't Stop 'til You Get Enough" to "I Wanna Rock With You," "Beat It" to "Thriller," from "Bad," to "Black and White," and "Man in the Mirror," the hits just kept on coming.
In the 90's, before (or probably during) his spiral towards bizzare behavior, he put out one song (and accompanying video) that I liked. My brother put it out on Facebook earlier this evening, and it made sense when it first came out, during his trials in the 21st century, and maybe now that he's no longer here with us. The song was "Leave Me Alone," and it was a response to all the gossip magazines, the tabloids, the paparazzi, and all the press that was always "dogging him around." The music video even includes images of the chimp, the elephant man, hyperbaric chambers, and other references that seemed to be written about him. I thought it was a good way to respond to all of the media attention he brought upon himself.
May Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett, and Michael Jackson Rest in Peace, and may their families be comforted during this time of grief.