Conan O'Brien thinks talk show hosts are treated like ''gods'' in the US.

The 51-year-old presenter thinks it is fascinating he and his peers attract so much attention Stateside but can go virtually anywhere else unrecognised, likening their situation to the lesser-known alter egos of superheroes.

Speaking to Shortlist magazine, he said: ''There's a long tradition of people who are gods in the States, but unknown anywhere else.

''[US tall show host] Johnny Carson used to go to Wimbledon every summer, and he'd talk about how odd it was to walk around without being recognised. He was like Superman without his cape.''

While Conan - who began his career writing on 'Saturday Night Live' - is a household name in the US, he admits the changes in technology means he is no longer sure his audience actually tunes in to watch his show.

He said: ''When fans tell me they liked something on the show, I never assume they saw it live any more. It's always through YouTube.''

'Conan' is to be broadcast on TruTV in the UK at 11pm from August 4.