Although they’re a few weeks late, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Beatles arriving in the United States last night with “unearthed, never-before-seen” footage of the Fab Four on The Ed Sullivan Show. The clip, which Fallon said took place right after the group concluded “I Want to Hold Your Hand,” showed just how “ahead of their time” the group was.
In the clip, John Lennon – as portrayed by Fallon – thanks the audience and says, “Don’t forget to ‘like’ us on Facebook.” The young ladies up front scream. “You can follow us on Twitter at @TheRealBeatlesUK,” he says as Sullivan’s producers kindly superimpose the Twitter address (note, that’s not the real Beatles’ real Twitter address). And he shouts out the group’s Instagram user name, which includes an underscore, so fans ensconced in Beatlemania can enjoy their Throwback Thursdays. “Feel free to ignore the photos of Ringo’s brunch,” Fallon says. “What was it yesterday, Ringo?” Then Starr – played by Fallon’s guest for the evening Fred Armisen, who last night began a new gig as the bandleader for Late Night With Seth Meyers – told the audience he had Eggs Benedict.
The corporate sponsorships kick in. Fallon mentions the Fab Four’s Vine address, complete with a hashtag that gets fans 10 percent off a can of Sprite. They inform the audience that they will be live-tweeting the VMAs from the Red Bull soundstage and ask their fans to use the hashtag #redbullbeatles to get funny phrases trending. What was Starr-Armisen’s suggestion? “Eggs Benedict.” Before they say goodbye, they find a way to squeeze in an Internet-friendly word that was added to dictionaries last year.
Earlier this month, the Beatles shared some real rare footage from their appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. The group’s two surviving members, Paul McCartney and Starr, also participated in a TV special commemorating the 50th anniversary of that broadcast called The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute to the Beatles. In addition to their reunion, the program found musicians ranging from John Mayer to the Eurythmics playing Beatles hits. Dave Grohl performed the Yellow Submarine song “Hey Bulldog” and told the audience, “If it weren’t for the Beatles, I would not be a musician.”
Watch Fred Armisen discuss his new role as bandleader on Late Night With Seth Meyers with Jimmy Fallon here: