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Why Conan O'Brien's Friends Thought He Died After His Hot Ones Appearance

Conan O'Brien is alive and wants his friends to know it. In April 2024, the fan-favorite comedian and late-night talk show host joined Sean Evans on "Hot Ones." With over 8 million views in two weeks, O'Brien's wing-centric interview has gone down well with fans — but not his friends. 

In an episode of his podcast "Conan O'Brien Needs a Friend," the comedian revealed that his friends thought he died after his interview, which immediately went viral on social media. "I had a bunch of friends who saw my name all over Twitter and the first assumption is, 'He's dead,'" O'Brien jokingly said, adding, "I did have people say, 'Oh my God, I thought, 'Finally!'"

"Hot Ones" has blown up in popularity over the last decade, with celebrities from all fields flocking to appear on the interview series. The novel concept features famous people eating increasingly spicy wings as they try to answer Evans' questions. As sad as it must have been for O'Brien's friends to think he died, it's a harsh reality that most fans have to deal with as they browse through social media. Anytime a celeb trends on platforms like X, formerly, known as Twitter, it's easy for some fans to think the worst, assuming that they've died.

Fans were just as impressed with the "Hot Ones" appearance as with O'Brien's "60 Minutes" interview from 2023. While the comedian talked a big game about how he could eat the spiciest wings, he admitted that the last few bites were difficult to scarf down. 

Conan O'Brien felt extreme discomfort after his Hot Ones appearance

Conan O'Brien may hate Jay Leno, but he loves going all-out for his fans. While speaking on his podcast, the comedian concocted a wild tale about what happened after he left the "Hot Ones" set. "I found a construction site where they were doing spot welding, and I went there. And I said, 'Gentlemen, if you want, I can weld these girders for you in, I'm guessing, about 15 minutes. You'll need to avert your eyes because I'll be dropping my pants,'" he joked.

"So there's a building in the Mid-Wilshire district that's going up, and I think I did about 65 rivets in the building. People were driving by saying, 'Conan O'Brien's pants are around his ankles, and I think fire is shooting out of his ass, and he's welding a building,'" he added. Honestly, this entire bit sounds like a "Simpsons" episode that O'Brien would write

Okay, obviously that's not what happened to the jokester. In the actual "Hot Ones" interview, the comedian rubbed hot sauce all over his face to prove just how mild they were. That wasn't the case, as O'Brien discussed how he faced discomfort on his skin, had runny eyes, and felt horrible after the interview. What particularly surprised him was how the sauce that got underneath his wedding ring led to considerable stinging and burning. "I took [the ring] off and I was like, 'Oh right, there's acid underneath it,'" he recalled. For what it's worth, O'Brien ate every single wing, coming out as a winner during the interview.