Almost 125 years ago, Larry King Live premiered on CNN.
No, it hasn't been that long, of course—only 25 years, in fact!—but it sure seems like Larry King has been lobbing questions at politicians, celebrities and other newsmakers as long as mankind has been hitching its pants up with suspenders.
Although he'll be staying on at the network to work on other projects, King bid farewell to his talk show on Thursday, getting through the emotional hour with a little help from his famous friends—and their tweets!
"This is not Larry's funeral. Larry is going to be hopefully in our living rooms for a lot of years to come...This is the end of a show, not the end of the man," guest Bill Maher reminded us as tweets from celebs such as Joan Rivers, Donald Trump, Mariah Carey and Jenny McCarthy flashed at the bottom of the screen.
It was almost his funeral, however, when Saturday Night Live player Fred Armisen—clad in King's exact black shirt, red suspenders and polka dot tie—grilled Larry as Larry.
"Besides holding up my pants, why do I wear suspenders?" Armisen-as-King asked. "Can the suspender industry survive the end of Larry King Live?"
"I will not stopping wearing them!" King vowed. "No matter what I do in life...the suspenders will remain."
"I've had some weird things in my life, but this is weird," he added, as the interview with his doppelgänger continued.
Sitting next to Maher in studio, Ryan Seacrest, who has filled in for King on a number of occasions over the years, echoed that he hoped this isn't King's last hurrah. "I hope we're doing something together [in the future]," he said, quipping, "We're 'in talks.'"
"In 10 years, if things don't go so well, you could be a morning deejay team—Larry and the Bean!" Maher suggested.
Among the powerbrokers sending farewell messages via satellite were none other than Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton, and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who declared it Larry King Day ("that spent two years in the legislature," Maher joked) in California.
King was in great spirits, trading jokes with his well-wishers and making time to quiz them about current events—and each other.
"What do you think about Ryan Seacrest?" he asked NBC Nightly News' Brian Williams, who called the American Idol host and E! News anchor a "sparkling talent."
Trump, Williams, Regis Philbin, Suze Orman, Katie Couric, Diane Sawyer and Barbara Walters (making her 21st appearance on LKL) all joined the party via satellite from New York, where Sawyer held up a pair of custom red suspenders with all the network news anchors' names stitched on the back.
"We are your protégées, your groupies, your Pips, as Gladys [Knight] would say!" Sawyer declared.
"You're a giant in our business," added Williams.
Couric composed a poem for the occasion, an ode to King's straightforward style and some of his memorable moments, including Paris Hilton's first postjail interview and Carrie Prejean's storm-off.
Also among the surprises: King's on-again wife Shawn and their two kids appeared in studio, and Tony Bennett performed "The Best Is Yet to Come" from San Francisco.
"In a nation that has too many windbags and douchebags, this man was never windy or douchey," Maher said appreciatively.
But it was Jenny McCarthy who really said it all.
"I'll miss your sexy ass!" she tweeted, surely echoing the sentiments of millions.