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October 9, 2015

Mike Henry and Daryl Hall on a Cleveland Show Thanksgiving

by Nick Zaino, posted Nov 21st 2009 3:02PM
The Cleveland Show ThanksgivingA year ago, before there was a Cleveland Show, when the Family Guy spinoff was still just a possibility, the show's first guest stars, Daryl Hall and John Oates, were brought aboard. They'll finally make their debut, playing an angel and a devil, respectively, on Cleveland Brown's shoulder on the Thanksgiving episode which airs Sunday at 8:30PM on Fox.

According to show co-creator, producer, and voice of Cleveland Mike Henry, the appearance came out of a trip to Las Vegas where a casting director arranged for Henry to meet the guys backstage after a show. When they showed interest, that was that. "We wrote the part and sent it on over," says Henry, speaking at a conference call with media.

"You planted the seed a year ago saying, hey, would you like to be on the show that's not on TV yet?" says Hall.

Whatever big decision Cleveland is making in the episode, Henry is a bit cagey. "Maybe Auntie Mamma has got a penis," says Henry. "Let's just say that. There. I've given it away."

Henry admits it has to do with a secret about Auntie Mamma, but we assume he's kidding about the wedding tackle. He'll leave it for the audience to find out the specifics on Sunday, but gives a vague outline. "He's having a dilemma as to whether or not he should tell his dad about it," says Henry. "I believe Daryl tells him to go ahead and tell his dad and stick to honesty in the relationship, and his dad will respect him. And John goes ahead and tells him to let his dad go ahead and get into some trouble."

What fans watching the show may not realize is that Hall is kind of an old pro when it comes to acting cameos on TV. Hall points to an episode of Z Rock he taped not long ago, where he got to improv a bit, and an appearance on SCTV. "Maybe that's something unusual about what John and I do," he says. "We're just ourselves. Because of that, I think that I can sort of stretch in any direction. I love doing comedy."

The Cleveland Show"Let me just say that they're real good at it too," adds Henry. "It didn't take much to get what we wanted. I think we knew how to write for them, and they knew how to deliver, so it was certainly not one of these things where we just started trying to shoehorn somebody in. It was really just kind of the perfect thing. From our end, they were right on."

Henry says the cameo is about a minute long, and includes "a little bit of a riff on one of their classics," and that it won't be the last episode of the Cleveland show on which Hall and Oates will appear. "It's a recurring thing in our series where, from time-to-time, they'll pop up when Cleveland is in a dilemma," he says.

Only six episodes have aired so far, but according to Henry, they are in the middle of making the second season, and Fox has committed to 34 episodes. And they've already made a tradition of casting celebrities way before they'll ever see screen time. There will be a Christmas episode this year, which will feature a storyline about Rallo missing his biological father. But Henry has already begun recording for next year's Christmas episode, starting with a cameo by Carl Reiner.

"That was a tremendous thrill," he says. "It was Rallo, a young African American kid, and Murray, who is the character that Carl Reiner played as an 80-something-year-old man in a nursing home, and they take racial jabs at each other, and then they come together, and it's kind of a really sweet episode next Christmas."

For Hall and Oates, things could not be better. They've just released a new boxed set, Hall has a monthly Web series called Live from Daryl's House, and Oates has a cartoon called J-Stache, on which his mustache, voiced by Dave Attell, fights crime. (Hall has no plans to join J-Stache, saying, "I think I'll let John's mustache speak for John, you know, no plans.").

But Hall won't call it a comeback for Hall and Oates. As far as he's concerned, they never went anywhere, and if they had anything to prove, that battle was fought decades ago, and they won. "This sort of concept of mass popularity in our careers has come and gone more than once, and we take the ups and downs of the masses in stride." he says. "That's not what we're really all about. We're musicians. We've always been musicians. We always will be musicians, and we just do good work or do the best work we can."

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He wasn't kidding.

November 22 2009 at 11:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mike Keller

I think that makes for a great show, especially with a full belly of turkey and the trimmings around you. The laughs will help burn some calories!

November 22 2009 at 2:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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