Hall: I'm a stand-up comic doing a late-night talk show. But what I like to do in moments like that is bring in a person like Stevie Wonder as the musical guest, and you let Stevie do a number, but you know when we put Stevie on the couch, he'll give us a respectable response to that kind of situation ... I'm sure people, they want to be put to bed with a smile, but they also want me to touch on things that are going on. I'm not bright enough to handle it but there are plenty of guests who can.
CNN: You've been off the air for nearly 20 years. How do you introduce yourself to a young audience that's never seen the original show?
Hall: After I knew I was coming back and Tribune and CBS syndication had said yes it's a go, I immediately started going on everything. I even wrote an article for Newsweek on fatherhood.
I went on Tosh, I went on Chelsea (Handler), I went on Leno about 47 times, I went on Bill Maher's HBO show and did a segment on the 20th anniversary of the riots by the way. I tried to get my face out there and doing everything. When ("Access Hollywood" host) Billy Bush would take a vacation, I would call ("Access Hollywood" host) Kit Hoover and say y'all mind if I sit in for Billy? And I'll call Billy and say, if y'all cool with it. I was doing everything I could to get my face out and to show this town that I'm still a viable talking head in late night.
CNN: Why come back now?
Hall: It starts with your 13-year-old asking you to drop him off about five blocks from the movie theaters or the party he's going to. There's a certain point where you realize you can moonwalk away from fatherhood just a little bit. And I sat down and had a conversation with him. Because part of raising a kid -- to be a man, you have to see a man -- and part of raising a kid is to show him the other side of it too. I love fatherhood. I really love being a dad. But like last night, I fell asleep before he did with the remote in my hand. That's what a young man needs to see too. Hard work, tired.