The new host of The Gong Show made his late night debut last night on Jimmy Kimmel Live, and he may have looked a bit familiar. When Will Arnett announced that he was reviving and producing the popular game show for ABC, he noted that he wanted to find someone really special to host. After all, Chuck Barris left quite the big shoes to fill. But few expected Arnett to sign a completely fictional character to serve as the new Gong Show host. Indeed, it was announced last week that British comedian Tommy Maitland would be serving as the host of the new Gong Show, only there were two problems: despite a lengthy biography, no one had ever heard of Maitland, and the promotional photo provided looked a lot like Mike Myers in heavy makeup.
So yes, Myers is going full Andy Kaufman to fill the role of Maitland, and as Arnett was serving as a guest host on Jimmy Kimmel Live last night, he brought Maitland onto the stage for a brief interview. Myers’ signature mannerisms are all there, including that unmistakable British accent, although he does a swell job of going completely into character.
Honestly it’s nice to see Myers bringing a brand new character to life. He hit big with Wayne’s World and Austin Powers, but subsequent tries like The Love Guru crashed and burned. Myers is big on character comedy, and seeing his version of The Gong Show should be interesting. Especially with a rotating celebrity judge roster that includes Zach Galifianakis, Alison Brie, Andy Samberg, Elizabeth Banks, Joel McHale, Dana Carvey, Will Forte, Jack Black, and Anthony Anderson.
Check out the Jimmy Kimmel Live segment below. The Gong Show hits ABC in June.