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From ALF to Alan Thicke: 12 Forgotten Celebrity Talk Show Hosts

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Today in: “There’s a holiday for everything now.”

Yes, Oct. 23 is National TV Talk Show Host Day, an occasion to celebrate the jokesters and Jerry Springers of the world who lull you to sleep and keep you company on sick days.

But what about all the talk shows that didn’t become institutions? The daily televised chats that only lasted one season?

We’re using this holiday to champion celebrities who were excellent at one thing, tried to translate that allure into a talk show and … well, it didn’t work out. For your viewing pleasure, here are a dozen celebrity talk shows that you probably forgot existed.


Alf’s Hit Talk Show

Number of Episodes: 7

This 2004 late-night show, hosted by everyone’s favorite cat-eating extraterrestrial, got a little ahead of itself with the name.

The Pat Sajak Show

Number of Episodes: 298

Hoping you wanted more than just one daily dose of the Wheel of Fortune host, CBS gave Sajak his own late-night talk show in 1989, but cancelled the show before a full year was through due to low ratings.

The Martin Short Show

Number of Episodes: 80

Not to be confused with Short’s 1994 sitcom of the same name, this 1999 late-night show, which combined celebrity interviews and sketch comedy, ended after one season. The success of the show’s obnoxious character Jiminy Glick did lead to the slightly more successful Primetime Glick in 2001.

Late World with Zach

Number of Episodes: 35

Before Between Two Ferns, The Wolfpack and the beard, Zach Galifianakis was the host of this VH1 late-night show, which included an early meeting with Bradley Cooper.

Lily Allen and Friends

Number of Episodes: 8

The singer’s innovative talk show had an audience filled with Allen’s online friends and featured interviews with popular celebrities as well as lesser know stars chosen by fans.

McEnroe

Number of Episodes: 22

The former tennis pro didn’t ace it as a talk show host. The 2004 program allegedly got some of the lowest Nielsen ratings ever before going off the air.

Thicke of the Night

Number of Episodes: 18

The Growing Pains actor quit his popular Canadian daytime talk show to start this pun-filled 1983 endeavor, which was supposed to rival The Tonight Show.

The Chevy Chase Show

Number of Episodes: 25

The 1993 show, which ended after five weeks, premiered a week after the first episode of Late Night with David Letterman and was originally was supposed to go to Dolly Parton.

The Caroline Rhea Show

Number of Episodes: 195

The 2002 daytime talk show was created as a replacement for The Rosie O’Donnell Show with O’Donnell herself picking Rhea as her successor.

The Fran Drescher Show

Number of Episodes: 16

Also called The Fran Drescher Tawk Show, this 2010 daytime show was not a hit for the former nanny or her dog.

The Magic Hour

Number of Episodes: 85

Magic Johnson’s talk show was panned because of the athlete’s visible discomfort playing the role of host. One of the show’s biggest critics was Howard Stern, who had a controversial appearance on The Magic Hour before it was cancelled.

The Megan Mullally Show

Number of Episodes: 71

In the 2006 daytime show, Mullally performed as herself and as her Will & Grace character Karen Walker.