In January, Comedian and talk show host Jimmy Fallon visited Puerto Rico with his friend Lin-Manuel Miranda. Fallon taped The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on the island because Miranda was also there for a special Hamilton theater run. Fallon said his trip to Puerto Rico wasn’t just a TV special because the visit ended up changing his life. If you saw the episode, you’ll understand why. Fallon was all over the island, talking to people, eating Puerto Rican food, dancing in the streets and truly embracing Puerto Rican culture.
On May 3, Fallon talked about his experience in PR at a panel in Los Angeles and also got emotional as he recalled how special it was for him. “It was a game-changer for me, it changed my life,” Fallon said, according to the Hollywood Reporter, who described the late-night host as tearing up as he talked about it. “People are so grateful that we went down there, I can’t even talk about it, it’s crazy. They were like, ‘You remember us, you remember that we exist.'”
He added that Miranda’s determination and passion to help Puerto Ricans inspired him to do all he could to help people on the island. “I thought in my head, do you know how hard that is? Not just to bring a Broadway show to Puerto Rico, but to bring a hit Broadway show anywhere else but Broadway,” Fallon said. “The fact that he pulled that off was so inspiring, and he was just so passionate about Puerto Rico, and they need help, and they’re rebuilding and not enough people are talking about this, and I said, ‘We’ve got to do it.'”And they pulled it off brilliantly. It truly was an incredible episode because you really felt their love for Puerto Rico and the people.
There is one thing Fallon hated about his visit to the island, and we sort of don’t blame him for it. Puerto Rico features the most intense zipline in the world. According to Jasanves Puerto Rico Adventures, “the Monster in Puerto Rico has been confirmed as the longest zip line cable worldwide by the Guinness World Records in Toro Verde Adventure Park in Orocovis, Puerto Rico.” It’s 7,234 feet long, and about 1,200 feet high, and yes Fallon had to do it for TV, and he dreaded every second of it, but that’s why it was so funny.
“I’ve got to be honest, I hated that part,” he said. “I did it because it was good TV and I did it because I wanted to make the best love letter to Puerto Rico, but I was frightened out of my mind. I hate zip lining — I don’t understand it, I don’t see why people need that much exhilaration like life isn’t exciting enough.”
If you didn’t get a chance to see that special Puerto Rico episode, here’s a portion below. The rest you can find on YouTube.