Fans of comedian Craig Ferguson’s former late night show have missed his weird and honest take on everyday events and celebrity interviews. But, now, the cheeky monkey is headed back to the talk show circuit in a very different way.
The History Channel posted this teaser to the show’s new Twitter feed, and, as you can see, Craig Ferguson’s new show, Join or Die with Craig Ferguson, already bears a striking resemblance to his former home on CBS’ The Late Late Show. And, lucky for us, it looks like he’s going to bring all his iconoclastic values back to the talk show circuit.
The Late Late Show had two previous hosts, Tom Snyder and Craig Kilborn, before Craig Ferguson took over hosting duties for the show in 2005. It would be fair to say that his talk show was like nothing the late night chat audience had seen before. Ferguson gleefully poked fun at CBS, himself, his show and the format as a whole. He had singing puppets and a rabbit sidekick. He never had a show house band or a couch-bound sidekick, but instead entertained the antics of a robot skeleton and had a stage side “stable” built to accommodate his show’s version of the horse Secretariat.
It’s good that Join or Die will be taped in front of an audience and feature a talk show format, because two of the things Craig Ferguson does so well is interact with and play off of people, whether they’re in the audience or sitting beside him during an interview. He frequently started shows by bringing audience members up on stage and interrogating them about their personal lives, before rewarding them with a gift certificate for a fancy dinner.
Craig Ferguson’s interviews were a thing of wonderful weirdness to behold. While most celebrity talk show interviews are focused on said celebrity’s newest project, Ferguson threw the rule book out and often just talked about random subjects with his guests, sometimes referring to their new project only at the end of the interview, but frequently not spending any significant time on it at all. And he ended interviews by making guests play a variety of silly games. Since his new show will focus on events in history, it’ll give him and his guests a focus for their conversations, which are sure to be intriguing.
I’m sure you have to be pretty smart to be a talk show host and do it well, but Craig Ferguson always seemed to be a bit smarter than the average talk show bear, simply due to the fact that he fought the rules of the format the entire time he was on CBS. Well, that, and because he talked a lot about Salvador Dali. That’s exactly the kind of talk show host I want to see on a show like Join or Die while I’m learning about history. This truly is a great day for America, everybody.