I've been watching the Actor's Studio for a LONG time... over a decade. Maybe even all 15 years. I've enjoyed almost every episode I've ever seen. I love learning about actors and their process, and I get a kick out of learning their favorite curse word. But, I have never, EVER liked you, ever. I'm sorry. I think you're arrogant, snobbish and mean. I think you talk down to people and, frankly, I think the rhythm of your speech is annoying.
But I caught an episode the other day that changed all that. You were interviewing Conan O'Brien, who I happen to really like. The majority of the show was pretty much like any other episode. I loved seeing Conan drop the character we see on his show and let the confidence that he clearly has come out. He was calm, eloquent and really interesting to listen to.
You were your normal self, James, until the last 4 minutes of the show. Rewriting "Thanks for the Memories" to honor Conan's 16 years hosting "Late Night" was beautiful. The group of students singing back up were fantastic. I loved the the funny lines ("Lofty Conan Hair" and "Max's Stony Stare") and was choked up by the time two girls sang "Go get 'em in L.A. in your own Conan way."
Yeah, that's right, Lipton. Choked up. I was blown away by how unbelievably sweet the whole thing was and then it got worse... Once the song ended and Conan shook everyone's hands, he walked over to you and placed his cheek against yours with a classic goofy-Conan look on his face. You reached up and patted his other cheek in the sweetest, most fatherly gesture I've ever seen.
Damn you, Lipton. It was so easy to dislike you, and it's NOT easy to admit when I'm wrong, BUT I'm starting to think you're not a jerk. So, I'm sorry. And, thanks. That was the best 4 minutes of television I've seen in a LONG time.
P.S. For everyone's viewing pleasure: