ABC’s “The Mayor” has already established its traditional fish-out-of-water premise: the account of rapper Courtney Rose (Brandon Micheal Hall), who with out be acutely aware turns into mayor of a struggling Northern California city.
Now, the sitcom is delving into the lives of the sequence’ supporting characters, together with Courtney’s mom, Dina (Yvette Nicole Brown), a in vogue congregant at her native Baptist church.
Enter Arsenio Hall.
On Tuesday’s (Nov. 7) episode, the normal performer and ragged two-time late-evening host performs Dina’s pastor, Reverend Ocho Okoye, who desires her to be a part of the choir.
“She likes to reveal songs spherical the home, however she by no means does one factor for herself,” says Hall, sixty one. “Proper this is an individual who doesn’t protected a inner most life.”
Hall proves a absorbing mentor, using his infectious upright temper to brighten up scenes filmed on the church, a staunch dwelling of worship in LA’s San Fernando Valley, and in scenes that seize blueprint at Dina’s home — the place Reverend Okoye reveals as much as manufacture a inner most enchantment when Dina continues to overlook out on choir uncover.
Hall in 1989 when he was once internet internet hosting “The Arsenio Hall Level to.”Ted Thai/The LIFE Image Assortment/Getty ImagesBrown, who went to the equivalent Cleveland excessive faculty as Hall (“We protected been about 100 years aside,” he says) and made his acquaintance, contacted him by textual content when she knew “The Mayor” showrunner Jeremy Bronson was once taking a understand for any particular person to play the pastor. Hall threw himself into the mission, assembly members of the Carter Household, gospel singers featured within the Oscar-a success documentary “Twenty Toes from Stardom.”
“I had three of them on my closing discuss comment. They sang with my band the complete night,” he says. “They’d uncover and heat up between takes on ‘The Mayor.’ It was once staunch involving.”
Whereas filming, Hall moreover had time to hold spherical with the comment’s trio of youthful actors — Hall, Bernard David James, who performs the nattily attired Jermaine, and Marcel Spears, the comment’s gossip, T.Okay. Clifton.
“They’re genuinely youthful and new within the enterprise. They protected been asking me the equivalent questions I standard to review James Earl Jones after we did ‘Coming to The US,’” Hall says. “We talked about enterprise managers and their rider. Then they requested, ‘Terminate you recognize Invoice Cosby? What’s up with that?’ They wished the complete 411.”
When now not filming the occasional TV visitor look, Hall spends most of his time doing stand-up. In August, he did 20 minutes at Radio Metropolis Tune Hall, all through Dave Chappelle’s lengthy engagement there. “It has precise acoustics for comedy and Chappelle has the particular audience,” he says. “They’re purists.”
They’re moreover successfully-behaved, leaving their cellphones in a pouch earlier than coming into the auditorium so there acquired’t be any forbidden recording of jokes or filming of the comics on stage. “You attain some Tiger Woods or Trump jokes and so they additionally’re on the Internet earlier than you purchase dwelling,” Hall says. “Folks [at Radio City] protected been actually listening. I was doing a comment in Charlotte and I had a lady flip [her] wait on to me and attain a selfie and I’m like, ‘Sit your ass down and construct your telephones away for one hour.’”
As portion of his “Geritol tour,” Hall prefers to work handiest on weekends. “I checked out Chris Rock’s agenda and almost fainted. It is seemingly you will per probability’t retain a relationship going,” he says. “Who’s she?” He laughs and says, “It’s now not like I’m relationship the star of ‘Pricey White Folks.’ She’s a succesful woman from San Diego and he or she’s now not infamous.”