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A recent Arsenio Hall show segment gave viewers an...

August 20, 1989

A recent Arsenio Hall show segment gave viewers an interview with an ax-wielding Jason, infamous star of the bloody "Friday the 13th" series of films. Hall asked the questions, Jason sat malevolently silent, and the audience laughed, lending credibility to the whole affair. When the idea was presented to him by his writers and producers, Hall should have done the right thing and refused to do the segment, which was not only a comedic skit but also an advertisement for the film. By not refusing, he showed lack of discernment and proper judgment. Comedy as a genre can reach the heights of social responsibility. Or, as in this case, it can descend into the basest depths of the human soul when it becomes a matter of doing anything for a laugh.

Michael Novikoff, Desert Hot Springs

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