Netflix has released a trailer for their new weekly talk show, The Joel McHale Show with Joel McHale. The show is billed as “a weekly half-hour topical series that takes a sharp, absurdist look at pop culture and news from across the globe. It’s a fast and funny distillation of everything people are talking about that week.” Obviously, McHale has a lot of experience with this kind of format after years of crushing it on Talk Soup, but the question becomes how does this program stand out among all the other talk shows out there?
For Netflix, it doesn’t really matter. The show is another piece of #content they can throw at the wall, and if it sticks, great. They’ll put it in promos for the larger service. If it flops, it won’t matter because the streaming giant has about 100 other shows in the hopper ready to premiere at a moment’s notice. That’s not to diminish McHale or his fellow executive producers Paul Feig, KP Anderson, Jessie Henderson, Brad Stevens, and Boyd Vico. That’s simply Netflix’s business model.
The other challenge is how to be a unique voice in a crowded talk show marketplace. We’re a long ways off from Leno vs. Letterman, and aside from the daily late night programs, there’s also Last Week Tonight with John Oliver and Full Frontal with Samantha Bee among others. McHale has his own following, but it will be interesting to see how they differentiate themselves from the pack. To be fair, the first promos for Last Week Tonight were less than promising, but once we understood what the show was doing, it became a hit. Hopefully, The Joel McHale Show will find the same success.
Check out The Joel McHale Show with Joel McHale trailer below. The weekly series premieres February 18th. The first guest will be Kevin Hart with appearances by Alison Brie, Mike Colter, Paul Reiser, Jodie Sweetin, and Jim Rash.