Tinseltown loves a good come back story, and Arsenio Hall is starring in his very own right now. In the 1990s, Hall was riding high at the peak of his career. He was appearing in films with his good friend Eddie Murphy, and he was hosting his own syndicated late night talk show. "The Arsenio Hall Show" lasted for for five years between 1989 and 1994, taping over 1200 episodes.
When the talk show went off the air though, Hall's career seemed to fade a bit. He was still working, but not as out in the forefront of the public consciousness as he had been when he was the only African-American late night host on the scene. The 56-year-old comedian seems to be coming back now, winning "The Celebrity Apprentice" this past season, and now there is word that CBS Television Distribution is going to produce a new late night talk show, hosted by none other than Arsenio himself.
The new show will debut next Fall, and will be syndicated, just as his last show was. The late night comedy scene is a crowded one though, and Hall will have a much deeper field to compete against than he did in 1989 when it was basically Johnny Carson's "Tonight Show" and David Letterman's "Late Night" that Hall was up against. Whether or not Arsenio can carve out a niche in a market that has two major networks with two shows apiece, Comedy Central with their juggernauts "The Daily Show" and "The Colbert Report," and TBS' "Conan" is yet to be seen.
We think there are three reasons that people will want to check out this new show when it hits the airwaves next year.
The Curiosity Factor - No doubt one reason, and probably the biggest, is going to be to see if Hall's still got "it." Arsenio has made recent appearances on shows like HBO's "Real Time With Bill Maher" and he still seemed engaging and up on what was going on in the world, and those are two traits he'll absolutely need come next Fall. If Arsenio can still make an hour of television fun and entertaining, he'll do just fine.
The Late Night Landscape Can Use Some Diversity - Just as in 1989 when his first show debuted, the late night scene is all middle-aged white males. Sure, they're all funny and talented, but ever since TBS canceled their show hosted by George Lopez, there has been a true dearth of cultural and ethnic diversity in the hosts of the shows. Arsenio can possibly help to bridge that gap and put an African-American in the hosting chair for the first time in a long time.
It's Fun To Root For a Comeback! - Sure, he had some intense showdowns on "The Celebrity Apprentice" this year, but in the name of competition, things can get heated. The fact remains that Arsenio is a supremely talented and funny man, and the camera loves him, and nothing feels better than watching someone come back and succeed at something they were once really good at.
Will you watch the new talk show that Arsenio hosts next year? Drop us a comment and let us know!
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