Friday, February 03, 2006

The Arsenio Hall Show

Let it be said, Arsenio Hall is a great entertainer. For some reason there's not a ton of info on the Arsenio Hall Show. This is what I remember, these were great nights for TV...

For many late night viewers Hall presented something especially needed, a show that was actually watchable. For the first few years, "The Arsenio Hall Show" was great TV. Hall wasn't exactly new to the idea. He was the co-host of Alan Thicke's bomb, "the Thicke of the Night." Hall also did a stint as the replacement host for Joan Rivers Fox nighttime show. "The Arsenio Hall Show" debuted in 1989. People like Eddie Murphy and Paula Abdul made memorable appearences. You know what was nice? Arsenio didn't indulge in inside chatter with those guests and he didn't do anything embarrasing like appearing in one of Paula Abdul's videos...

From the very beginning the Arsenio Hall Show had a party atmosphere. At its peak, The Arsenio Hall show had the right mixture of A and B list acts all together. Not surprisingly a few of Arsenio's guests weren't totally ready for this new-fangled entertainment. For some reason guests often brought their racial baggage to Arsenio's set. Being the vicious comic he could be, I remember Arsenio making short work of both Dabney Coleman and Ray Sharkey. For the most part the guests did enjoy themselves, I know I did when I appeared on the late night program. Thanks Arsenio...


By the mid '90s Hall's show started to lose steam. It was at this time a lot of guests quit Hall and opted for "the Tonight Show with Jay Leno." During the end of its run, Arsenio filled his stage with new musical acts, often forgettable guests and more and more hooey. The show was cancelled in 1994. You know, I'm still thinking about the fact that this show was on until 1994--now that's something...

There's Arsenio interviewing Paula Abdul, no doubt Arsenio is deep in thought. Catch his interviewers pose...






Mariah Carey made her national television debut on "the Arsenio Hall Show." That was back when she was really cute and wasn't a pain in the ass...





That's Keenan Ivory Wayans from a particulary hilarious and totally offensive skit on "In Living Color." There's one word for this: instant classic...
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