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'Arsenio Hall Show' Hurting For Ratings As Co-Producer Tribune Broadcasting Sweats

Television
by Sergio
October 9, 2013 8:34 AM
62 Comments
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Just a few days ago Tambay reported about the sudden departure of Neal Kendeall, the showrunner and executive producer of The Arsenio Hall Show (HERE), which clearly means that things are not going too well on the show.

Now we know how badly. 

According to veteran media reporter Robert Feder, the nationwide ratings for the show have dropped a whopping 40 percent since the show’s premiere, and according to Nielsen, the show’s target audience, viewers between 18-49, has dropped from a 1.0 rating to a lousy 0.4.

According to Feder. "it’s too soon to declare the show dead, but there’s no way it can survive on Hall’s charisma and nostalgia alone. Plagued by miserable monologues (hint: jokes are supposed to be laughed at — not applauded), lame bits and lackluster guests, it needs to get a lot better. And fast."

And it needs to get a lot better for Tribune Broadcasting, which co-produces the show, which has a lot riding on it.

In a late night meeting last Weds with employees, Tribune Broadcasting CEO Peter Liguori, told his staff that the success of Hall’s show was important for the company’s future outlook.

He was quoted as saying that “This is incredibly important for us in terms of the lead-outs from late news, in terms of us having a little more fire power on the original programming front, when we package ad sales and when we go to cable operators. We can try to talk about Arsenio and all of our original programming efforts to explain to cable operators that we’re creating value for them.

Two days after that meeting Kendeall was out.

As Tambay and I have said previously, it’s not the same as it was 20 years ago, and nostalgia isn't going to bring you ratings. And with all the tough completion out there, Hall was always going to have major trouble getting A-list guests, unless he had the ratings to get them. Having Vivica A Fox on the show, like he did last week, isn’t going to cut it.

However, unlike a lot of people, I never was a fan of Hall even 20 years ago. I always thought he was corny and a suck-up interviewer back then, and obviously, after all these years later, he hasn’t missed a step.

It’s a different world today. You’ve got to get with the program. 

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62 Comments

  • David Baker | June 23, 2014 1:48 AMReply

    Arsenio Hall is to comedy as Hillary Clinton is to veracity: They are mutually exclusive. I watched a segment of his earlier work to try and get a sense of what the hyperbole was about. It was about hyperbole, and little else. Now, Hall is older and even MORE insipid than his younger persona. Why is Hollywood fronting this skinny monument to banality on their roster of late night hosts? Conan O'Brien was (and IS..) funny. Johnny Carson was funny. Even David Letterman has his occasionally humorous moments (Though much fewer than during his salad days) Arsenio Hall is dull, uninspired, untalented and simply not ready for Prime Time, or even Sub Prime Time. Maybe there's a school for these erstwhile comedians to learn how to overhaul their presentations.

  • David Baker | June 23, 2014 1:47 AMReply

    Arsenio Hall is to comedy as Hillary Clinton is to veracity: They are mutually exclusive. I watched a segment of his earlier work to try and get a sense of what the hyperbole was about. It was about hyperbole, and little else. Now, Hall is older and even MORE insipid than his younger persona. Why is Hollywood fronting this skinny monument to banality on their roster of late night hosts? Conan O'Brien was (and IS..) funny. Johnny Carson was funny. Even David Letterman has his occasionally humorous moments (Though much fewer than during his salad days) Arsenio Hall is dull, uninspired, untalented and simply not ready for Prime Time, or even Sub Prime Time. Maybe there's a school for these erstwhile comedians to learn how to overhaul their presentations.

  • Star | May 22, 2014 4:34 PMReply

    Always liked Arsenio - the reason for his show's mediocre response is not because he is a black talent. That's such a lame excuse for a show that actually now lacks a mix of multiethnic talent. The network would not have brought him back unless he was capable and talented -being black is incidental to how much people like him. But his presence and performance remains much the same as years ago and he needs a unique, new approach, plus drop the old school racist comments and having mostly black guests. His show needs a mix of talents and perspectives to keep a multicultural audience feeling included and engaged - white, black, there shouldn't be any preference; guests to reflect our multicultural nation. Sorry that the show lacks the vibrancy it used to have (shouldn't have been cancelled years ago) and has lost a sense of inclusion. Arsenio is a smart, worthy and fun host, but he needs to be more inclusive in attitude and those he brings on as guests.

  • kenisha james | May 16, 2014 12:29 AMReply

    He is such a racist. Time to go!

  • handsomerandyblackladbrad1953 | March 5, 2014 5:27 PMReply

    "Arseholio" was a no-talent hack a quarter-century ago,and has perhaps regressed today.How 'bout giving YOURS TRULY a late night talk show?
    That would begin to solve your "Late Night Talk As White Boys' Club image-but I'd be BY FAR THE HANDSOMEST HOST!!!!(I'm a good ol' black Canadian lad,60,with boyish good looks,a muscular build-I'm 5'9",200 lb.,18-inch biceps-
    who's attempting to become a Country music song-writer,and said to resemble a handsome black cowboy stud IN AND OUT of my Wranglers jeans and other
    casual and/or Western garb.)

  • Dave | May 16, 2014 4:08 AM

    You sound totally hot! I sincerely hope you'll consider a gay relationship!

    Also, I'm a top. Deal with it, pretty boy. Wink wink wink!

  • Jackrabbitslim13 | February 28, 2014 12:04 AMReply

    How about some White guests? Stop alienating your audience!

  • Shabazz | March 17, 2014 10:54 PM

    That's the whole problem. RACISM !!! They have a problem with a black person making it without a white influence. Welcome to America.

  • Psycho | February 25, 2014 12:10 AMReply

    The problem is that his show was this bad 20 years ago. It's the same dork and the same show. Only now he's an even older, dorkier dork.

  • Jason | February 5, 2014 4:22 PMReply

    Saw the first episode and a couple of other bits here and there. He has to be the worst comedian on the planet. Jokes are horrible. I enjoyed this guy on The Celebrity Apprentice as a "contestant". He wasn't at all a comedian then, and still isn't with this show. It does seem like he's trying to hard, and almost as if he's doing something someone else is telling him to do. It's like he's a robot out there. Also, his fingers are way too damn long and distract the hell out of me.

  • lori | January 25, 2014 12:43 AMReply

    This show is boring, not original, his body language and eyes show a lack of interest care and energy. I'd love something true to himself but I feel like he's miming. does he ever sit and watch himself.

  • David Kirk | January 5, 2014 7:59 PMReply

    Referring to the programming I viewed on the night of Jan. 4 2013, I found the jokes offensive and border-line racist. Some of his guess I found to be quite silly. Where are the people in charge of ratings, or for that matter the people who are in charge?

  • ICEYANDDICEY | December 22, 2013 10:25 PMReply

    The 90's are done dude as is this show

  • ICEYANDDICEY | December 22, 2013 10:25 PMReply

    The 90's are done dude as is this show

  • mike | December 20, 2013 11:50 PMReply

    The set of the show is the worst part.

  • Nita | December 18, 2013 2:41 PMReply

    I love his show....He's had GREAT guest...He's a hell a lot better than any other talk show host...

  • Carl | January 3, 2014 11:16 PM

    DAVEY boy, what do you mean? Stop all the whining and complaining. There is no racism remember? STFU. lol

  • Dave | January 1, 2014 3:10 PM

    No, Nita...his guests suck. And, most of them are black this time around. Hmmmm. He is simply on the racist Obama train and will go off the rails when this Obutthead train runs out of steam. He is NOT better than the other hosts, because his ratings suck. Theirs dont. Racist networks like Pix just push black shows to appease the racist black minority. Enjoy the ride....for now.

  • Denise | December 11, 2013 2:09 AMReply

    I wish he would stop with the racist jokes about white people, black people,everyone. I didn't watch a full show over 20 years ago and haven't been able to again. White lady this, black person or bitch. If any other person said have the references to color as he does they would have been off the air the first night. I'm black.

  • Carl | January 3, 2014 11:17 PM

    Cry us a river Joan Crawford.

  • Joan | January 3, 2014 11:13 PM

    Thank you Denise, I agree a hundred percent. I couldn't believe what I was hearing, his racist jokes are unacceptable.

  • Joan | January 3, 2014 11:13 PM

    Thank you Denise, I agree a hundred percent. I couldn't believe what I was hearing, his racist jokes are unacceptable.

  • Holly | December 9, 2013 11:18 PMReply

    The racist comments/jokes can really stop. Sickening, disrespectful and arrogant.

  • Dee | December 11, 2013 2:11 AM

    I was thinking the same.

  • Vernon Alarcon | December 4, 2013 1:38 AMReply

    stick a fork in this disaster...

  • sufside16 | November 29, 2013 2:39 PMReply

    The Arsenio show is a train wreck. The black/white jokes are stupid and the show is silly. The show is dying and should be put out of it's misery.

  • ICYNDICEY | November 14, 2013 5:50 AMReply

    The 90's are done dude as is this show

  • ICYNDICEY | November 14, 2013 5:50 AMReply

    The 90's are done dude as is this show

  • ICYNDICEY | November 14, 2013 5:50 AMReply

    The 90's are done dude as is this show

  • ICYNDICEY | November 14, 2013 5:50 AMReply

    The 90's are done dude as is this show

  • Gus | November 7, 2013 1:13 PMReply

    Arsenio..... NOT funny then, NOT funny now and NOT funny in the future. What were they thinking!

  • Random Notion | November 5, 2013 11:26 PMReply

    Arsenio's show should be on the BET channel. White people don't want to watch this crap. And I'm sure most black people don't even find this guy funny.

  • Jared | December 17, 2013 12:12 AM

    Who cares what "white" people think of his show, and you're not sure of what most "black" people find funny. You are an imbecile!

  • Y-vonne St. John | November 7, 2013 9:30 AM

    I have watched Arsenio since he came back on in September. I did not like the skits and some of the guest. Thank goodness he's listening because there are no more skits and better guest. I think that his band needs to wake up and talk back to him like on Letterman. I watch him every night cause I like his interview style. Yes he could use better writers but so could the rest of the late nite talkers. He does not deserve all this negative talk; the other shows have me falling asleep. Suggestion: Get some better music guest, cut out the anti-white jokes and no more skits. I watch and will continue to watch cause I feel he will get better cause the other talk shows are really not all that. And yes I am Black.

  • Howard | November 4, 2013 11:11 PMReply

    I like Arsenio, and wish him the best. I just think he needs to take the show to another level. Now remember he had some of the best writers on his original show, and that was funny. He also had guest's that were not on other talk shows. He cant compare this show to the old one.

  • Stabro | November 3, 2013 4:56 AMReply

    Arsenio is doing great and I think he is still the king of late night. I watch Hume every night. He will only get better

  • Seann Mac | January 2, 2014 2:06 PM

    U must have brain dam a am midge to believe he is the king of late night he's nothing but a racist that needs to be taking off the air once and for all..

  • Maggie | October 31, 2013 11:23 PMReply

    I really like Arsenio and his show but I don't appreciate the racist remarks or jokes. It really turns me off. I probably won't be watching again.

  • Patrick Gallimore | October 31, 2013 1:16 AMReply

    I like Arsenio's new show. He just restarted, so it's going to take a little time for him to find his footing. I think most of the comments made of him and his show have been unfair. Right now, Arsenio and the show's writers and producers are, probably, just trying out different things to see what works and what doesn't. I'm happy the show is back and I hope it remains on air for a longer time than the first time around. Arsenio is one of the nicest guys in Hollywood and he gave some of today's successful comedians their big break, on his old show, including, George Lopez and Tommy Davidson. Also, it was on Arsenio's show (the first one), that then presidential candidate, Bill Clinton, donned his sunglasses and played the saxaphone. His new band, The Posse 2.0, are fantastic. I think the show will do very well, this time around, and the show's viewership will grow from strength to strength. It's good to see that there's someone of colour hosting his own prime time late night talk show. Lastly, each night Arsenio has, at least, one African-American celebrity guest on his show. Welcome back to late night Arsenio, and may you have as much or more success than the first time around!

  • Tom | November 30, 2013 1:40 AM

    You're black, aren't you?

  • Tom | November 30, 2013 1:40 AM

    You're black, aren't you?

  • Tom | November 30, 2013 1:40 AM

    You're black, aren't you?

  • Tom | November 30, 2013 1:40 AM

    You're black, aren't you?

  • Manny Schtunk | October 30, 2013 11:14 PMReply

    Just turned it on,..and quickly turned it off. He can't deliver a line or set up a joke. The dude isn't funny and he asks inane questions of his guests. I don't like the guy,...but actually feel embarrassed for him. Sad attempt at a late night show.

  • Paul | October 30, 2013 3:13 AMReply

    A...so dissapointed...I was a viewer from back in the day...wow...echo on stage..makes the viewer feel like you are in a vacant lot, and based on the reviews...maybe you are. I really hope you didn't just grab the short term brass ring here A...You have talent, please show it! Wow...watching B Bridges and his guest appearance ad for his 'special' chairs....really! You shitting me? Abstract fusion jaz musical at the end just ot totally confuse the viewer at the end of the show....are you trolling for stoners? They don't have that kind of attention span...on wait, the music got interesting here for a sec...oh, it's gone....A you will be too unless you get it together! Yeah, let's check in on OZ using your Twit account....wow... I know your exec walked..isn't there another C* snorting exec to take his place..;c'mon!!!!!! A!!

  • Paul | October 30, 2013 3:07 AMReply

    A...so dissapointed...I was a viewer from back in the day...wow...echo on stage..makes the viewer feel like you are in a vacant lot, and based on the reviews...maybe you are. I really hope you didn't just grab the short term brass ring here A...You have talent, please show it! Wow...watching B Bridges and his guest appearance ad for his 'special' chairs....really! You shitting me? Abstract fusion jaz musical at the end just ot totally confuse the viewer at the end of the show....are you trolling for stoners? They don't have that kind of attention span...on wait, the music got interesting here for a sec...oh, it's gone....A you will be too unless you get it together! Yeah, let's check in on OZ using your Twit account....wow... I know your exec walked..isn't there another C* snorting exec to take his place..;c'mon!!!!!! A!!

  • Paul | October 30, 2013 3:07 AMReply

    A...so dissapointed...I was a viewer from back in the day...wow...echo on stage..makes the viewer feel like you are in a vacant lot, and based on the reviews...maybe you are. I really hope you didn't just grab the short term brass ring here A...You have talent, please show it! Wow...watching B Bridges and his guest appearance ad for his 'special' chairs....really! You shitting me? Abstract fusion jaz musical at the end just ot totally confuse the viewer at the end of the show....are you trolling for stoners? They don't have that kind of attention span...on wait, the music got interesting here for a sec...oh, it's gone....A you will be too unless you get it together! Yeah, let's check in on OZ using your Twit account....wow... I know your exec walked..isn't there another C* snorting exec to take his place..;c'mon!!!!!! A!!

  • foxtytoo | October 26, 2013 12:02 AMReply

    A. Hall is great. The other late night shows are boring.

  • Dava | October 23, 2013 11:25 PMReply

    For at LEAST 6 months before Arsenio's show premiered, I watched commercials EVERY night about "ARSENIO'S COMING BACK". Well, yeah, he came back alright -- with about 3 original shows and THEN the re-runs started. WTF? Do you mean to tell me that when you know at LEAST 6 months (and I'm sure even longer) your show is going to air, you can't tape more shows so you don't have to resort to re-runs so early on? And why would you give this show an hour slot SEVEN DAYS A WEEK when we're already having to watch re-runs? Makes absolutely NO SENSE to me. I will find some other channel to watch during Arsenio's Re-Run Show. So disappointing.

  • dr tony | October 23, 2013 2:52 AMReply

    its tough being a talk show host. its time to move on arsenio. its not funny. you are awkard, it makes me uncomfortable watching you. --you spend to much time looking at cue cards. you look down too much at the floor, you look at the band no eye contact. you need more training. i feel u are not connecting with the audience. i do wish u well. many blessings. go do stand up.

  • Dr. Tony | July 13, 2014 1:27 PM

    "It's tough being a talk show host" Probably the toughest job in television. Very few people have the capability to project their personality to their demographics on a regular basis and keep their material fresh and entertaining. This profession has it's luminaries, and it would behoove people like Arsenio Hall to study the various methods by which these successful hosts were able to stay on the air.

  • Sancho Pz. | October 17, 2013 4:09 AMReply

    I said it before on other comments and I will say it again:.....
    Watching Arsenio Hall is like running into a long lost old friend from 1994.
    It sure is fun to catch up on old times and reminisce, but after awhile, you
    realize that you've moved on and don't have much in common anymore...

  • Tina | October 20, 2013 1:38 PM

    I don't watch the station that he's on anyway. I never watch channel 5.

  • Zakkir | October 10, 2013 12:56 AMReply

    I can't believe Arsenio is using Tavis Smilley's former producer. To produce his show. Clearly, this is a wrong move. His show is weak at best. His band is weak also. I would have chosen Raphel Sadiq to lead on put me a band together. I don't think Arsenio is in charge of this show. His entertainment guess is terrible! And Arsenio comedy stunts are wack. He never was funny as a comedian. I would love to see Rachel Farrell on his show. There is s a host of black talented entertainers who could use more exposure on a national scale. And he could help them by using his national plat form. The "Monique Show" (BET) was far better than Arsenio Hall Show. The entertainers she expose to the world was awesome. I really miss that show.

  • Char | October 22, 2013 11:00 AM

    I have to agreed - the guest are weak and I would love to see Rachel Farrell. I like Arsenio but this stunts are just not funny. I don't think he has any power into how this just pulled together.

  • FactChecker | October 9, 2013 9:03 PMReply

    Shall we start taking bets as to when his show will be cancelled?

    I'll give it four more months -- until the end of January 2014.

    BTW what are the ratings like so far for Queen LaTifah? Another sure to be
    short-lived program?

  • Miles Ellison | October 9, 2013 8:53 PMReply

    Arsenio needs to find some of that late '80s Uptown Comedy Express magic. Either that, or put on a dress and a fat suit.

  • ChuckWepner | October 9, 2013 7:48 PMReply

    Did Vivica look good?

  • Kojak's Wig | October 26, 2013 3:04 AM

    Hot damn, Sergio, you don't mince words on these celebs, do you!

    (also, I agree)

  • sergio | October 9, 2013 7:52 PM

    Well...her face is so "knifed up" now that she really looks strange. A real shame. She didn't have to do that to herself

  • David | October 9, 2013 11:26 AMReply

    I watched the show twice. I just couldn't take it anymore. The jokes are lame and not funny and I had to even stop it from recording on my DVR. Between watching him or John Stewart on "The Daily Show", it is no competition. I wish him the best but I will never watch it again.

  • liz | October 18, 2013 6:04 PM

    David ...I couldn't agree with you more. I wanted to like Arsenio's new show...but it is corny and not funny. In some situations, it is edging on vulgar. What was that thing about Zipdown Fridays...when men (and maybe the women) unzip their pants???!! He says and does things that are inappropriate because he is trying to be "edgy". His skits are just stupid...Uncle Thurman...Something for the Ladies...Say What...just not funny. Awful. He also does that animated run on at the beginning of the show and his cheesy expressions....just awful. Sorry Arsenio.

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