2014 will be remembered as the year that the late night talk show world was almost entirely changed. Two weeks ago, everything almost seemed set for the next age of late night with Stephen Colbert taking over The Late Show and The Minority Report with Larry Wilmore replacing The Colbert Report at Comedy Central.
Then, last week, The Pete Holmes Show sadly got axed at TBS and Chelsea Handler announced that she will be leaving and effectively ending Chelsea Lately on E! this summer. Today, CBS has just brought their axe down on the syndicated Arsenio Hall Show. A second season for Arsenio was announced earlier this year, but declining ratings shot down any hope of that coming to fruition. In fact, the very last episode already aired last week on May 21st and this news of the cancelation came during a hiatus week.
CBS commented, “Unfortunately, ‘The Arsenio Hall Show’ will not return for a second season; while there are many loyal fans of the show, the series did not grow its audience enough to continue. Arsenio is a tremendous talent and we’d like to thank him for all the hard work and energy he put into the show.”
20 years ago, Arsenio Hall saw the end of his talk show after a five-year run. This time around, Hall didn’t get to make it to a year. Of course, 2014 is a much tougher time to establish a talk show fan base. Adult Swim, The Daily Show, and @midnight , as well as the availability of YouTube and Netflix, have expanded the landscape of TV passed 11PM, but they have also spread the late night viewership thinner.
There is no word on what Arsenio is planning next, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see him pop up with another show soon, perhaps online.