EntertainmentSnob, PopCulturalist

Ding Dong: DL Hughley’s News Show Is Dead

I know ONE female blogger who is having a delicious laugh right now.

From Cityfile New York (via Gawker):

Comedian D.L. Hughley was pummeled by critics when his weekend talk show debuted on CNN last fall. “What the hell was CNN thinking?” a columnist for AdAge asked after watching the first episode. It remains unclear what was running through the minds of CNN execs when they signed him up for the spectacularly unfunny program featuring painfully awkward interviews. But the network may have come to its senses or at least decided to cut its losses. A source tells us that CNN has decided to cancel the show due to “budgetary constraints.” We haven’t heard back yet from reps at CNN, although the move wouldn’t be surprising given CNN’s troubles as of late and the fact that HLN (the network you used to know as Headline News) is now “beating its older sibling CNN in the target 25-54 demo,” according to Broadcasting & Cable. We’ll let you know as soon as we hear more.

CNN has stated that they will continue to work with DL’s unfunny ass as a contributor.

Of course, none of this would have happened if it had been Aisha Tyler or Wanda Sykes. But, don’t listen to me, CNN. Pick the guy who struggles to formulate complete sentences and is best known for making fun of people who have the audacity to sit in the front row of his shows.

For the record: For those who don’t get why people dumped all over D.L. for this show, you must understand: People disliked it because it was bad. And considering black people are no longer in this place of media desperation where we have to be “grateful” for shitacular displays of Negroes on TV, folks freely complained that out of the history of CNN the first black person to be given his own show just happened to be a comic. Not a journalist. Not a political figure. But a comedian. And not even a particularly funny, politically astute, smart one.

You know? Like his nerdy hot competition on Comedy Central. I’m suuuuuure DL kept Jon-Jon and The Colbert Nation up late at nights in sweats.

And these shows do not die because black people “complain.” They die based on ratings. Networks have historically (especially when they’re starting out) worked hard to “woo” a minority audience to build advertising dollars. Once they get the money (see FOX, the WB and later the CW), the black shows, no matter how popular (see, “Living Single,” “Girlfriends,” “A Different World” and “NY Undercover”) are cancelled with the swiftness. In the case of Living Single (then the most popular show on FOX) and Girlfriends (the second most popular show behind America’s Next Top Model), the cancellation was all about the network wanting to go in a different, more “mainstream” (re: white folk) direction.

Not random “hateration.” If black folk could “hate” something off the air, sweet Jesus we should have murdered Ray J.’s show in the crib from all the bitching. “I Love New York” would have NEVER EXISTED.

Someone brought this topic up the last time I made fun of Hughley’s ability to kill shows. I decided, finally, to say something. Mostly because I get exhausted with the “Must support all black entertainment no matter how shitty” argument, which has been out-dated since Nat King Cole broke the TV color-line.

Once you had a choice between the dapper nature of Nat and the buffoonery of Amos and Andy folks knew what the deal was.

As for D.L., I’ve interviewed the guy. He’s a nice enough guy. But, c’mon, dude is seriously deficient in the funny department. Chris Rock once had a bit about the black comic hierarchy in Hollywood and how it starts with “Let’s call Eddie/Will,” then works its way down to Jamie Foxx, then Martin Lawrence and then, and only then, when Martin says “Hell no,” someone calls Chris Rock.

Sometimes they’ll go through a few Wayans brothers before they get to Rock.

I’m saying D.L. isn’t even on that list. They’ll call Anthony Anderson first (and have). Or Katt Williams. Or Ice Cube. Or anyone. Nick Cannon. Anyone. They don’t call D.L. He is not on Brad Grey’s speed dial. He never even got as huge as Chris Tucker or Dave Chappelle did before they both decided celebrity life was not the life for them.

Black people get frustrated of being forced to “settle” for shitty entertainment. Great that he was successful. Great that DL made something of his life. I just didn’t have to watch his shitty show. It deserved to die just as much as his unfunny, bad George Jefferson clone UPN/CBS sitcom.

It. Deserved. To. Die.

Someday (but not today), producers will learn that all Negroes are not equal and will be a little more discriminating in the talent they select to carry their Daily Show knock-offs.

Which is why I cannot say Aisha Tyler’s name enough times. (And I don’t say this because the woman friended me on Twitter. I’ve been a fan since she was trolling late night talk shows in the 90s, making fun of her husband’s glaring whitness.) The woman went to Dartmouth. She used to host “Talk Soup.” She was the only thing worth watching on “Ghost Whisperer.” She once said being a black girl with a flat-booty was like having a handicap. How does this woman not have a show?

I can only assume CNN is scared of extremely good looking, smart, tall black women.

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24 thoughts on “Ding Dong: DL Hughley’s News Show Is Dead

  1. dukedraven says:

    Hughley won’t be missed. Tyler is glib and pretty, but I don’t really relate to her humor. This might be a personal bias, considering that Ellen Degeneres is probably the only female standup comedian that makes me laugh. Then again, I’m completely out of the loop. BTW, I remember this factoid: The Nat King Cole show was the only program to air on commercial TV that didn’t have sponsorship. The South caused that and the network–which foot the show’s cost–finally pulled the plug on it after a few weeks. Black people protested Amos & Andy and got that cancelled.

  2. Andrea says:

    I never watched the show. I used to like DL before he said what he said about the Rutger’s Women B-Ball Team. That really hurt me. It didn’t hurt as much when Imus said it because he was a White Exhibitionist but it hurt to know DL was married and a father…a member of a larger family unit and someone that wanted to "lead" and impress Blacks who would be so wrecklessly cavalier in trying to hurt other women for a joke and jockeying points with a niche market. I felt for those girls most when Black men aligned with the defense to mock them. It really broke me.

  3. rojunkie says:

    CNN has finally come to their senses!!!….They knew a long time ago it was a mistake, but ran with it anyway. It won’t be long before they fill that time slot. They’ve got great talent there…DL was not one of them. As a news producer and a big fan of CNN…I was disappointed with his show. He is not a journalist…and not that funny. Maybe that slot can be used for roundtable topics and go with the great idea w/ viewers responding on twitter, facebook, and Myspace. That idea with Sanchez doing that in the afternoons is good for ratings

  4. One of the most disappointing parts of all this is the fact that his character on Studio 60 was sick and tired of black comedians being like… well… D.L. Hughley.I guess every part is just another part to him.

  5. ILLAIM says:

    “black people are no longer in this place of media desperation where we have to be "grateful" for shitacular displays of Negroes on TV, folks freely complained that out of the history of CNN the first black person to be given his own show just happened to be a comic. Not a journalist. Not a political figure. But a comedian. And not even a particularly funny, politically astute, smart one.”———————————————————————-I agree with all said above excpet for him not being “particularly smart”. I only watched I would say about an hours worth of D.L’s now deceased show due to it being exactly what I thought it would be from its opening episode from what I was able to glean he did show a understanding of the issues and respectable intelligence, not unlike his appearances on Bill Mahr’s progam.Your main point is undisputable tho, with all of the intelligent Black political figures, academics, and journalist out there, why would one even consider giving this man a show? Aisha Tyler = Clasic Talk SoupGlad to have read this.

  6. @Andrea I totally agree.That Rutgers joke was uncalled for an embarassing. Even worse, he refused to apologize even after a group of ministers protested a show of his in Texas.He was the least funniest Comic View host, the least funniest King of Comedy. To note, I tried to give the brother a shot. I watched a few programs. He was on point when he discussed the NY Post "Monkey" cartoon. He lost me later in the show when he made a crack about the woman being mauled by the monkey and then said "but enough about Chris Brown." He totally missed the irony of him referring to Chris Brown in terms of a wild monkey and his previous disparaging of the NY Post cartoon.Oh well. Not an Aisha Tyler fan. I get that she is smart. She just isn’t funny. Neither is Wanda Sykes.

  7. Jesse Jackson did have a show on CNN briefly in the 1990s. I forgot what it was called, he had guests and the like, but…he was the first one I guess. That said, good riddance to D.L. Hughley. He’s been telling the same jokes since he was on the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air for one episode.

  8. Lolita says:

    hey hey hey…The Hughleys was a funny show.I can’t really co-sign anything else…ESPECIALLY him being a King of Comedy…even at the ripe age of 10 it got a WTF?! from me.

  9. CMc says:

    The Hughleys actually was funny…and smart. Wow people, so was the Rutger’s B-Ball team comment DL’s Chris Brown moment or something? The CNN show wasn’t good, but the comments seem to have more personal animosity towards the brother than critique.

  10. JustSaying says:

    "Networks have historically (especially when they’re starting out) worked hard to "woo" a minority audience to build advertising dollars. Once they get the money (see FOX, the WB and later the CW), the black shows, no matter how popular (see, "Living Single," "Girlfriends," "A Different World" and "NY Undercover") are cancelled with the swiftness."I agree with the post, except for a quick (small) fact check "A Different World" does not belong on that list…it aired on NBC as a Cosby Show spin off and lasted for a good 6 seasons or so until it was canceled, deservedly so since it had lost its way after Dwayne and Whitley got married."Wow people, so was the Rutger’s B-Ball team comment DL’s Chris Brown moment or something? " Absolutely…the emotional and mental abuse of black women by black men, just as the physical abuse, shall also not be tolerated. So this generally un-funny, barely tolerated, totally overrated (by white people only) comedian, lost all credibility with black people…black women especially

  11. Glad to see the show go off the air. It was terribly painful and I’ve only seen a combined 20 minutes and that includes a couple of promos. DL is not funny, never been funny, can’t imagine what CNN was thinking.Sidebar, A Different World was an NBC show that in my opinion had a rough start regarding content even though it debuted at the #2 spot in the nation and in black households in it’s first season. Thank heavens for a major reversal with the exit of the then lackluster Lisa Bonet and the entrance of the stellar Debbie Allen at the helm. If I remember correctly, it had a good run but it would be hard for any show to stay on the air whose ratings dropped so sharply in overall US households (from #3 in season 2 to #86 in season 6).

  12. Danielle Belton says:

    @ AllI’m going to have to agree to disagree with a couple of you about The Hughleys. I honestly hated the show. I never found them believable as an actual family. And it’s true, Different World was not the same as the others in how it went off the air, although it did get the same "will it be canceled, won’t it be canceled, take the show off the air, then air the finale all of a sudden months later" jerk around, which was typical. But I was lazy, and didn’t separate that out.As per DL, for me, it’s not personal. He’s a comedian. Some comics say mean things and DL has made mean humor a feature of his comedic shtick since Comic View. And they anointed "themselves" the Kings of Comedy. There wasn’t a vote there. I don’t think DL and the crew were funnier than Chris Rock or Dave Chappelle or Eddie Murphy or Jamie Foxx or Chris Tucker. All four of the latter were vastly more successful than these four kings in their endeavors. I mean, it was a brilliant marketing ploy by four good, not great, comedians who could bring in more money together than separate. (That’s why the model was copied by both middling Latino comics — The Latin Kings of Comedy, women — The Queens of Comedy, and the Blue Collar Comedy Tour featuring Jeff Foxworthy and Larry the Cable Guy. It’s a genius business model.) The best out of the four (Bernie Mac) was probably the most successful, but no one expected any of them to ever make it to an Eddie or a Jamie level of fame. So, I just didn’t think the man was funny. Never have. The Rutgers thing was uncalled for (as usual), but if you’ve been following his comedy since Comic View NO ONE should be surprised. Mean humor is what the man does to make his livins. You either like it or you don’t. I’m in the "don’t" column.

  13. LaJane Galt says:

    His coonery is roadkill. I’m glad he’s gone. It’s insulting to believe that he was to compete against Stewart/Colbert.Aisha Tyler on Talk Soup was insane. I love Wanda Sykes on Curb Your Enthusiasm.

  14. Tai Pad Vam says:

    Danielle Belton, you seem to be stuck on the Rutgers incident. As a snob, you should not be offended by him being shallow. Moreover, just because you do not get the "mean" humour does not mean it is not funny. Are you the ugly, sensitive girl? If so, your webtitle makes you look bipolar. As a snob you should boost yourself, spread gossip and not openly tell folks that you are praying to win the lotto. Trust me, D.L.’s show was cancelled because of all of the complaints that the Blacks were voicing about how D.L. "Makes them feel". Thanks haters.

  15. Sandra says:

    Sorry, Tai Pad Vam, but I’m not going to pretend that what DL said/did was okay, or that he was funny, or that he wasn’t an embarrassment, just to "support a brotha". Those days are long gone. You’d better have talent, or you’ll hear about it. And on a personal level as a black woman, if DL choses to make comments that don’t support black women, then why on God’s green earth should he expect black women to support him? It’s called reciprocity, and it’s pretty elimentary. Good riddance to him.

  16. KAH says:

    Wanda Sykes was BRILLIANT way back when she did "political commentary" on the Chris Rock Show. She would have been a great choice, as would Aisha Tyler. I would tune in in a minute. When I first heard about DL’s show I thought "Oh, really? He’s smart AND funny? Cool, I’ll try that." Turns out, no, he’s not smart, or funny. Fail. They should have kept looking.

  17. Jemille Hardy says:

    DL sometimes seemed smart enough, and I sometimes found myself "feeling" his political world view as he expressed it…but the show had an awkwardness that drove me to switch it off. I would love to see such a format with fast talking Tyler as host. Sister Sykes would be great as well. CNN is clueless so I won’t be holding my breath.

  18. Danielle Belton says:

    @ TaiUm … OK. I’m just going to assume you didn’t read my post or my comments and are just confused, because you didn’t make a lick of sense there. And if you think some black people complaining got DL Hughley canceled, please tell me how we had such power over Hughley yet Flavor Flav, New York, Ray J., et al were showered with shows upon shows?Ratings killed Hughley. If he had good ratings it wouldn’t have mattered how much I thought he was unfunny. And …(must I repeat it?) if you’re going to just pull shit out of thin air at least be funny or entertaining! That’s all I ask!

  19. Anthony Nurse says:

    CNN wanted ‘The Chris Rock Show’. I wouldn’t be surprised if they approached Chris, only to find out he wanted to be, you know, paid. So they took the Chris Rock format (topical monologue, interviews, man on the street/fish out of water remote video pieces) and went to find a black comedian who:people have heard ofhas a middling career, as the pay won’t be muchwouldn’t mind being in an obvious Chris Rock ripoffI guess someone watch ‘Studio 60’ twice, saw Hughley’s character and didn’t realize Hughley’s character=Hughley. I knew the show would be a failure because, while I have no idea about Hughley personally, Hughley’s comedy is gleefully dumb at best. If CNN had to have a black comedian to host (and you don’t dare go for a female host), why not go way out of the box and hire Bill Cosby? He would probably pay CNN a fee to get an hour a week to tell black folks to start acting right.

  20. Tai Pad Vam says:

    Ms. Belton:Perhaps I did not make a "lick of sense" to you because you were reading defensively. Moreover, you compare 30 somethings complaining about DL on CNN to 30 somethings complaining about shows on VH1? Really?

  21. Tai Pad Vam says:

    Yeah!!!! D.L.’s show was not canceled! It is merely being re-formatted to suit his lifestyle with his family! Wow what a stand up guy.

  22. All I want to say is…I miss Chris Rock on HBO!! We don’t have a comedic political pundit like him anymore…at least not one that we always hear from.

  23. Ace says:

    We do not need comedian politician trying to replace denis Miller. Be original. The yonly use Chris Rock, BET, Cedric and DL Hughley to get "their" messages across. Who’s the "they" the same people thatt own the media and told DL Hugley to get them childish behine twisty dreads to look more hip-hop. Good riddance! Where’s the next Farrakhan, we’ve been selling out all 2000. Barack? Please!!! He got the look and the coolness, but if the best thing you can do as President is bop down the Air Force one plane steps… We need the guard to change, like yesterday!!!!

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