Conan's first guest the curator of a nutcracker museum? We'd believe it.

conan-obrienImage Credit: Conan O'Brien: TBS, Nutcracker: Getty ImagesToday, rumors are swirling that Arlene Wagner, who opened  the Leavenworth Nutcracker Museum in the state of Washington 15 years ago with her husband, George, will be Conan O’Brien’s first guest when his late-night show Conan debuts on TBS Monday. A rep for the show has yet to confirm the booking to EW, but here’s what we do know: On Friday, O’Brien announced via the video below that voting in the poll to name his first guest was now closed, and he had decided to eliminate all but three of fans’ picks, including Justin Bieber and Lady Gaga, for various reasons. It’s down to Jack Nicholson, the Sultan of Brunei, and Wagner, Conan said — adding that he would be tallying and manipulating the results. After sidekick Andy Richter gave an interview contemplating having the elusive Nicholson sitting between him and Conan, a rep for Conan called the writer back to say Richter was just “joking.” So yes, we’d believe it if Wagner earned the coveted spot. Both Conan and Andy have said all they want to do on their new show is have fun, and what’s more fun than talking to a woman who’s traveled the world to collect more than 6,000 nutcrackers and will bring props? According to the museum’s website, Wagner is a former ballet teacher who produced the Nutcracker Ballet for many years, and “just as Clara in the ballet became entranced with the wooden figure with the big teeth, so did Arlene.” Who better to talk to about having their balls busted during the Tonight Show debacle? (And again, props!)

Are you now hoping Arlene is Conan’s first guest, or are you still holding out hope for Nicholson? Wouldn’t it be great if Conan had all three of them walk out so he could announce the winner, and then sent Nicholson and the Sultan packing without them saying a word? Maybe that’s a little too much to ask for on basic cable… we’ll see. 

More on Conan:
Conan O’Brien on his new show: ‘You’ll see me sink to a new low. In a good way’
Conan O’Brien surprises George Lopez with Spanish skills, a mariachi band
Andy Richter talks ‘Conan’ as test shows begin: ‘We’re gonna be a lot happier’
‘Conan’ announces first week of guests. Who are you most excited to see?

Comments (58 total) Add your comment
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  • Seddie Forever!!!!!!!!!

    Still would have preferred funny man Jerry Trainor or Jennette McCurdy or even Victoria Justice

    • Shelby

      This show isn’t for 13 year old girls. He’s gonna have someone huge, rather than some no name actor from nickelodeon

      • Danny B

        Yes, because Arlene Wagner is definitely huge…(note the sarcasm)

      • Chaz Winterbottom

        It’s true what you say about Ms. Wagner. I have seen a photograph of her and it appears to me that she can only be described as being of average height. That is to say she is most assuredly not “huge”.

      • jp

        Amen, Shelby. The first comment on this story is beyond absurd.

    • Cris

      Does anyone who actually knows those three stay up late enough to watch?

      • Kasey

        Jerry Trainor and Jennette McCurdy are absolutly hilarious, and no i’m not a 13 year old girl. I’m a 30 year old woman and I love ICarly I think it is funnier then anything on Disney I watch it with my cousin. Anybody who thinks they are to old or too cool to watch Nickelodeon is missing out Jerry Trainor is Amazing and Jennette is crazy funny

      • Gibby

        Jerry Trainor is going to be a household name in a short time, he is absolutely the reason why icarly is hilarious, he reminds me of what Jim Carrey used to be. Jennette is okay but I think her being funny is more a reflection of the writing

      • Ian

        Being “funnier than anything on Disney”, is hardly a true barometer of comedic prowess. Kind of like saying “It’s the best acting on the CW”.

      • jp

        You sure don’t write like a 30-year-old, Kasey. Did you miss the years in school where they taught punctuation? Oh, and by the way, Conan won’t be on Disney or Nickelodeon. Maybe your parents can unblock TBS for you.

      • allie

        Ok, I’m 32 and I love iCarly. That being said, why on earth would Conan have any of them on his triumphant return to television? That just seems ridiculous.

    • Chaz Winterbottom

      You’re just making up names aren’t you?

  • Michele

    i really don’t care who the first guest is, I’m just excited to see Conan back on TV!

    • TorontoTom

      I’m not.

      • Chaz Winterbottom

        Take off ya hoser!

    • LOL

      I’m with Coco!

  • mary q contrary

    I like the suggestion at the end. Would be an EPIC publicity stunt.

    • Danny B

      Not quite epic at all, just stupid

    • ashy elbowz

      yeah that’d be real epic wouldn’t it. just epic.

  • E-Hustle

    I dont care you the 1st, 2nd, or whatever the guest list is, I will be watching the 1st show for sure. After that I will do my best to support Conan. Atleast it comes on a half hour earlier. Those 30min goes along ways for those of us who have to wake up early in the mornings for work. Go Team CoCo!

  • DR

    Let’s look at this realistically: It’s their debut. I know they’re stupid comically. but they wouldn’t risk rating by bringing the nutcracker lady. It’s going to be Jack Nicholson, and the nutcracker lady is going to make an appearance for laughs.

  • Donna Imwithcoco

    Glad to see an article that at leasts seems to get Conan’s beloved absurdity.

  • Marla Bates

    I could care less who the first guest is. I LOVE CONAN O’BRIEN!!!! I can not wait to he’s back on TV!

  • Jeff

    Wait–the Pope *won’t* be the first guest?????? :-(

    • Ian

      The Pope as a guest is a reference to a season 3 episode of ALF from the 1980s, where he was the host of The Tonight Show and the Pope was his guest.

  • Barry

    Who cares? This guy has no talent. Why do people think that he is funny?

    • Sydney

      Well Barry, I’m sure there are people that think Leno is funny and talented too and that is debatable. You see opinions are like…well you know the rest.

      • Barry

        Leno’s not funny either.

    • susan

      I don’t think he’s funny either. Who is he going to blame when TBS cancels his show?

      • liz

        Squares like you.

  • SaraKat

    So Happy Conan will finally be back on air!! He’s been my fave late night talk show host for about 10 years! Only one that makes me laugh. Screw Leno and NBC! GO CONAN!!

  • Daniel F

    It’s already been confirmed to be Jack Nicholson. : /

  • Andrew M

    Still think it’ll be Will Farrel. He was his first guest ever, so it makes sense.

    • Nick

      No, he was not.

  • susan

    It wil probably be Will Ferrel or somebody else from the NBC/Saturday Night Live family.

    Here is Conan’s lineup: Will Ferrel, Mike Meyers, Adam Sandler, Rob Schneider, David Spade, Molly Shannon, Norm MacDonald, Kevin Nealon, Kevin James, and lots of the boring Andy Richter….zzzzzzzzzz

    • Preston

      I’m sure he’ll book them; he’s not forgotten what NBC did to him for his late night talk show in a disrespectful kind of way. So he’ll get Will Ferrell and anyone that guested on his old talk show.

  • kate

    Arlene is my friend’s grandmother, and the news about her been circulating in the local newspaper and on the Seattle news stations. She’s been featured on CBS’ Sunday Morning and other shows, so it won’t surprise me if she’s on my TV on monday night. If she’s not the first guest, she’s definitely booked for Conan sometime during the first week.

  • Ash

    I’m so excited for the show! TEAM COCO!!

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