by Barry Burch Jr.
Arsenio Hall; he’s back, and in a big way. Coming in at number one out of the 25 biggest cities with his new syndicated show, Hall has perfectly illustrated that he still has what it takes to make people tune in.
The new show premiered on Monday, and if the early ratings are any indication of what’s to come then we are looking at the new King of late-night. “The Arsenio Hall Show” averaged a highly impressive 1.0 rating in the essential category of viewers between the ages of 18 and 49, as reported by The New York Times. Though the initial ratings are limited in reach in that they do not include total viewer totals, they do show that Hall’s presence was definitely felt.
According to the site, Mr. Hall’s ratings put him ahead in those 25 cities, in front of big name late-night stars, including Jimmy Kimmel on ABC (0.8); Jay Leno on NBC (0.6); and David Letterman on CBS (0.5).
What’s more, Hall has nearly doubled the ratings of every station’s average that would have been in his line up just a year ago.
Hall’s success has been seen before; however. In 2009, when Conan O’Brien took over the “Tonight” show, he scored a 3.8 rating in the same 18-49 group that Hall scored a 1.0 in. Hall, who is 57, has been away from late-television for almost 20 years, and should be pleased with his performance as his powerhouse competition, included “Monday Night Football” on ESPN.
“The Arsenio Hall Show” first premiered in 1989 and ran until 1994. The show became a breakout, late-night success, rating especially high among the younger demographic. It was known for its audience’s distinctive alternative to applause: chanting “Roo, Roo, Roo!,” while pumping their fists. In 2012, Hall was the winning contestant on NBC’s reality-competition game show, Celebrity Apprentice.