Are TV Viewers Seeking a Late Night Wolf -- Just More 1990s' Woofing?
Arsenio Hall is coming back to television -- as a late night syndicated talk show host
-- pretty much exactly as you think.
A new promo for the show seems somewhat old. Nothing wrong with that. Nostalgia can sell fairly well. In the TV spot, Hall can be found "woofing" it up. Hall even calls himself the 'woof' man.
Maybe it's the time of year. The holidays always bring on the warm, the cuddly, and the the happy past -- a time worn TV marketing device. Going with this theme there's a new TV promo, called "The Gold Standard," for the next season of "American Idol". It includes a video montage of big "Idol" names of the past -- Carrie Underwood, Jennifer Hudson, Chris Daughtry, Scotty McCreery, among others.
When it comes to launching syndication talk shows -- or for any TV show -- all this make sense, considering that talk show ratings on any TV platform are much lower than when Hall left the airwaves as a late night syndication host back in 1994. Sony tried the same with Ricki Lake's return to syndication talk show land this new season.
Give viewers want they expect -- at least when it comes to luring them in. TV marketing executives didn't even not play up Arsenio Hall's recent TV exposure, that of Hall's last season win on NBC's "Celebrity Apprentice."
The TV spot builds like a suspense crime/horror thriller with a woman running in dark alleys while a voiceover intoning dramatically:
"Some say he is only a legend. Some say he never existed at all. But others swear when night grips the city if you close your eyes and listen -- really listen -- you'll hear the pulse pounding, hair-raising pulsing sound of... The Wolf Man."
Then Hall: "Not the Wolf Man. The Woof Man!", which Hall adds with a wiggling fist move that goes with it. Hall is surrounded with a bunch of attractive women in a party-like atmosphere. Voiceover person concludes: "Arsenio is back. And he is bringing the party with him."
Sure sounds like there is something going on. And I'm guessing it'll also be... in the house! But will there be enough TV viewers in the house for Arsenio Hall this time around?