No joke: Despite the creative and ratings disaster that was Last Comic Standing's third season, NBC has announced plans to resurrect the reality series--albeit in an overhauled form.
For this go-round, Yes, Dear's Anthony Clark will take a stab at hosting the search for the next great stand-up, replacing former smack-talking emcee Jay Mohr.
"Anthony is a very funny comedian whose engaging wit and personality have made him a favorite with audiences," said Craig Pletsis, head of the Peacock alternative programming division. "We're delighted to have him host the show when it returns to NBC this summer."
While the decision to bring back the seemingly ill-fated series may come as a surprise to viewers who watched--or rather, didn't watch--the show get yanked from the airwaves just one episode shy of finishing its run, the host swap is hardly shocking.
Shortly after NBC pulled the plug on Last Comic Standing 3: Battle of the Best, which pitted comedians from seasons one and two against each other, Comedy Central agreed to pick up the only remaining episode--the season finale--and air it. But just one day after the deal was announced, and one week before the finale aired, NBC revealed Alonzo Bodden as the winner on its Website.
Needless to say, the show's dwindling but diehard fanbase, as well as Comedy Central, were not pleased. Ditto Mohr.
He lashed out not only at NBC's decision to air the third season so hot on the heels of the second one, but at the show's unceremonious dumping from its slot in lieu of the since canceled animated series Father of the Pride.
"[It was a] bad idea. We argued that having a separate version of Last Comic so soon after season 2 concluded would burn the audience out and damage the franchise," Mohr wrote on the show's Website. "Well the network insisted we move forward and we came up with LCS: Battle of the Best."
In his sign-off from the posting, Mohr couldn't help but mention his show's seemingly more favored replacement.
"I have to stop typing now because I have to go TiVo Father of the Pride."
The last season of the Emmy-nominated series, which aired in fall 2004, drew in a meager 6 million viewers, down from the 8 million-plus viewers averaged in both seasons one and two.
After the series failed to receive a pickup last summer, it was presumed to have run its course. However, according to Variety, the NBC exec in charge of reality series had a soft spot for the show and decided to give it new life.
No premiere date has been set.