‘Arsenio Hall Show’ Still Looking Good Despite Night-Two Dip

The Arsenio Hall Show review

It's providing big timeslot gains and is on par with Leno and Kimmel in young-adults demo

New latenight talker “The Arsenio Hall Show” held up pretty well in its second night Tuesday, earning a competitive finish with Jay Leno and Jimmy Kimmel in the young-adults demo.

According to Nielsen, the primary runs of “Arsenio Hall” averaged a 1.5 household rating on Tuesday — down from Monday’s 1.9. The two-night average of 1.7 for “Arsenio” is up a significant 70% over what its stations were averaging a year ago in the time period.

The show is also performing about 13% better on average than its lead-in.

In the adults 18-49 demo, “Arsenio” on Tuesday averaged a 0.7 rating in Nielsen’s markets with Local People Meters, which put it slightly behind NBC’s “Tonight Show With Jay Leno” (0.8), on par with ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” (0.7) and ahead of others including CBS’ “Late Show With David Letterman” and TBS’ “Conan” (both at 0.5). (The broadcast programs are at a slight disadvantage in such comparisons, as viewing levels are lower from 11:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. than the 11 o’clock hour occupied by Hall. And last night, there may have been delays in start times due to President Obama’s address on Syria.)

“The Arsenio Hall Show” is produced by Eye Productions Inc., in association with Arsenio Hall Communications Ltd. and Octagon Entertainment Productions, and distributed by CBS Television Distribution. Arsenio Hall, John Ferriter and Neal Kendall are executive producers.

The show is anchored by the 17 stations in the Tribune Broadcasting station group, which is also a partner in the show.

Tuesday night’s guests were Ice Cube and Lisa Kudrow.

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  1. Exactly as predicted. Ratings were so high for the first night, due to extensive promotion, and curiosity. It’s nearly impossible to remain competitive with Leno and Letterman, who have network strength, and MUCH higher production budgets, to stay afloat.
    Since The New York Times gave the premiere such negative reviews, the second-night dip was—well, predicted. Expect ratings to drop even further—especially come February 24, when Jimmy Fallon replaces the retiring Jay Leno, and starts siphoning away younger viewers (much like Leno initially did).

  2. ZIL says:

    Ok…my deam would be to be a television critic…so here it goes.

    I watched Friday the 13th episode of the Arsenio Hall show (and have watched for the entire week). I have to preface everything that I am going to say with….I loved Arsenio back in the day. Maybe because it was something new…maybe because I was younger ….maybe it was because he proved to be talented…I don’t know. But I can say that in 2013…on his return to late nite….it just isn’t working (for me). As many of the comments on this post have already said…his jokes are old, stale, unfunny and in some cases stereotypical and bordering on racism. (I know he doesn’t mean them to be – but many folks are uncomfortable and/or insulted by his comments).

    Well…tonights show begins with the band playing and the introduction. It has already been mentioned that the band needs more bass. The sound is very tiney. Even when Johnnie Gil was performing this week….the band just couldn’t measure up to his voice. I am not saying they are not good…just needs more bass.

    Arsenio comes and with unbecoming “powerful” facial expressions. Not necessary. Arsenio…just be yourself. And the first comment (joke?)….”Obviously I am a black cat…but if you cross my path it is good luck”. What is funny about that and what good luck does he bring? Makes no sense and not funny. And then….the skit “say what!”. I won’t tell you what it was…just say it was juvenile….not worthy of Arsenio. The next joke…about some monkeys being infected with HIV…and then saying, “if you meet a monkey in a bar…you’ve been warned”. Funny?? No…not in any way. His monologue continued to go downhill…with the Amish joke and redneck something or other. Arsenio come on….you are better than this. Then he capped it off with a “Happy Day” joke segment. Let me give you a sample of a joke…”A 50 year old Argentine pole dancer……….and the joke was, “when she gives her grand kids five dollars in their birthday card…it’s all ones”. Funny…no! I don’t even want to go into the Hitler’s body guard died when he was 96….so the joke was “if you ever wanted to attack Hitler, now is the time”. Funny…not in any way.

    Now the guests…Angela Bassett, I thought was good. She did the best she could given Arsenio’s interviewing techniques. I can not remember who the whiney blonde woman was…but her voice was like chalk on a blackboard. Finally the musical guest…not my taste….maybe more for the youth. They were ok…I guess.

    In any case, the writers must have a deaf joke ear. And…how can Arsenio believe that this is funny….or entertaining. I get the impression, he just wants to be on television at any cost and is not looking at what he says objectively.

    Arsenio, we love you. You have got to do better or you will find yourself off the air again.

  3. gina scott says:

    I watched the show 19 years ago and never missed a night, I’m there again, love you Arsenio!!

  4. Lamont James says:

    Stay away from the gangster nasty ace rappers. Please don’t continue to alienate viewers. They wanna watch you but changes need to be made. By the way I am black.

  5. Lamont James says:

    Dude your jokes suck , who’s writing this stuff. You are much more talented. I’m quite disappointed. Please change before they cancel your show. You are a very funny guy the format just ain’t gettin it . Please change.

  6. Shaunna says:

    I tried it for 5 mins, couldn’t do it anymore it’s that bad. I had high hopes. The straw that broke the camels back : ..” Hitlers bodyguard died, so now is the time to get hitler..” What the…. Who is writing this crap??

  7. dre says:

    I’m so team arsenio right now. Glad he is back. Think the show is great. He’s a classic late night talk show host and his talent will take him where he needs to go.

  8. moe says:

    I though Tosh.O was bad but i do get a laugh in at some point. his couple of shows, I couldn’t get the old image out of my head.. I hope he can change his format because right now it’s Boring and his jokes they suck. Keep trying ..I’m hoping it will get better

  9. Rudee says:

    I don’t see this show lasting too long. It just seems drawn out and boring.

  10. derrick shaw says:

    Hey, while i hear what you’re saying, i think you may be a little harsh on Arsenio. Give him a few weeks. The first week was all about old school stuff. He’ll go beyond that in time.

  11. ZIL says:

    Who writes those jokes and skits for Arsenio? If there is a job opening (and there should be!) I would like to apply!! I couldn’t do any worse.

  12. Derrick A. Shaw says:

    Great to see Arsenio back in his natural element. Talk show are his thing! I felt sorry for him wen his show got cancelled back in 94 due to Minister Farrakhan’s appearance, which was totally unfair. He should be able to invite whomever he pleases! Anyway, that was then. Just so happy we can watch his show again, after 20 years.

    Fan from Canada (Greater Toronto Area)

  13. DKRoss says:

    It is only week one. I love the format. I love the feeling of nostalgia. It will pass. The show is in rebirth so it will get better.

  14. Michael L. says:

    Big disappointment. I was a fan of the old show and had high hopes for the new. He is awkward and everything seems dated… the set, the band, the skits, the jokes, his comedy references, the guests, his wardrobe, and worst of all, his delivery. Very dated material and only occasionally (desperately) grasping at current or trendy events (Miley’s twerking). He had confidence and command as a stand-up but I have not seen that recently. I wince at the corny jokes and hope I might laugh on purpose… it’s better than Chevy Chase and Magic Johnson’s late night shows but not what he used to be or up to par with the current late night standard.
    Maybe he should invite guest musicians to play with the house band… play a mix of current hits or relevant old school… not generic intermission music. Break new artists and comics like he used to. Stop reminding us how long it has been… be here now. Should try a refresh and hopefully he’ll get his comedy legs back. That is, if the show can last more than a few more weeks. What happens when he runs out of old friends and favors from his Celebrity Apprentice friends? (Snoop, Magic, G Lopez, Cube…) The guest list is already fading in the first week (Penn & Teller, Mark Harmon… an old magician from his childhood?) Like many viewers, I am watching for the wrong reasons… but I will get bored soon.

    • ZIL says:

      Michael…I absolutely agree with everything you said. You really hit the nail on the head. I…too…love Arsenio…but agree that the show is very dated. And…where is the comedian with the quick wit and great jokes? The skits are ridiculous and make no sense. Arsenio…leave them out! I like your idea of breaking in new comics…new artists…great idea. Penn & Teller good….and Johnny Gil was also good…but Arsenio what about you?? You need to stop so much with the past…and focus on the here and now. Those dated movements (the constant pointing at who knows who)…dated jokes (and in some instances…a bit on the stereotypical side…and not funny),,,makes you seem like an old man and you are not. Just think…Johnny Carson did his show up into his 60’s…and he was current and on the mark. He was a comedian. Arsenio, you are very talented….stop living in the past.

  15. Kimberly says:

    I love arsenio . he interviews better then ask better interview questions then the others. But who is writing all this other crap!!! Don’t they know that white people don’t find ANY facial jokes funny anymore. Big turnoff. Get new writers and get rid of the ugly set( there’s a reason all the others look the same) STOP trying to duplicate the old show, there is a reason it didn’t work. Be like the others we just want arsenio

  16. G says:

    Nothing new about it, it’s still the same show, old, dusty and unimaginative.

  17. fee says:

    some of the jokes are bad but hey give the man a chance he’s been off the air for years I really like the show it’s refreshing it will get better he just needs a little more time

  18. Steve says:

    I’m not a racist person. But how about some white people acts.
    We are your biggest fans but come on!!!

  19. Kristen says:

    I love that he is back

  20. Joe T says:

    Love Arsinio but the show is dull and the humor is not there. Stop trying so hard!

  21. Robbie says:

    okay, just turned it on, now turned it off – the jokes are truly passee – the Mormon’s dunkin’ on Black folk – give it a rest my brother, get some new material.

  22. k baker says:

    The Arseno Hall Show has, and still puts on a very good show.

  23. Bob says:

    I’ve always liked Arsenio as a talk show host. I think he does a terrific job. There’s no hype and that’s SO REFRESHING! I can’t stand Jay Leno or Fallon. Arsenio I will be watching for sure.

  24. Drmabuse says:

    I thought this guy show died years ago, was painfully to watch then and is painfully to watch now……

    • Evan Stevens says:

      I missed the hype about Arsenio getting another crack at late-night television. Then I accidentally found the show while clicking through the channels. I was really confused because I thought I was watching a re-run of his show from 20 years ago, only now his hair looks different. Hey Arensio, if it didn’t work 20 years ago, it’s definitely not going to work now.

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