Arsenio Hall is back. Nearly 20 years after "The Arsenio Hall Show" wrapped its five-year run, the comedian returned to take another stab at late-night supremacy. The new show kicked off on Monday night with Hall in a therapy session, where he said he would work hard to get to number one, and then he'd get to stay in late-night forever!
"Yeah, good luck with that," said Jay Leno in an obvious nod to Leno's upcoming departure despite his long tenure at the top in late night.
The highlight of the premiere, though, may have been a surprise that even Arsenio Hall didn't see coming. Paula Abdul showed up and got sincere for a moment. "I’m so proud of you," she told him. "You know, you’ve done something that no one’s ever done before, or let alone even tried. To come back, 20 years, and step back into this spotlight.”
She said that he'd been missed, and then teased him by asking if he would be moving out of her pool house now that he was working again. Abdul and Hall famously dated back at the height of his fame during his original talk show. Rumor even has it that the pair might be back together once more.
As for why he's returning after so long away, Hall told USA Today that it just feels right. "I have no regrets. I've had an incredible time away. I was able to raise my son in a way that my parents weren't able to be in my life ... But as [he needs] me a little less, I'm going to start addressing the fact that I miss late-night and I might want to try to go back." Perhaps most importantly, his son is fully behind his decision.