It worked: Pee-wee Herman’s viral Twitter campaign lands him KCRW radio gig

A black-and-white photo of a man deejaying with an antique radio.
Pee-wee Herman will host a radio show for KCRW this month.
(Pee-wee Herman / KCRW)

Pee-wee Herman is becoming eclectic.

Cue: “I know you are, but what am I?”

After a viral Twitter campaign, Paul Reubens’ iconic “Pee-wee’s Big Adventure” character will be deejaying his first radio show on KCRW-FM (89.9)— one of Los Angeles’ public radio stations and National Public Radio affiliate.

“I mailed them a letter, which got lost (apparently!), and then tagged them on Twitter and THEN they didn’t believe it was me until my biggest, bestest, most amazing fans called and called and jammed up their phone lines (hee hee)!” Herman said in a press release Monday that was purportedly written by him and sent to “esteemed journalists.”


“Thank you fans because they are going to get me some donuts and leave me the keys to the studio while they are on vacation!”

The self-proclaimed aspiring disc jockey and music lover will be joined by his “Pee-wee’s Playhouse” friends Chairry, Magic Screen, Miss Yvonne and some “super famous” surprise guests while they listen to “some of the greatest music ever recorded.” (John Paragon, the actor who played Jambi the Genie on “Pee-wee’s Playhouse,” died earlier this year.)

The show debuts Nov. 26 at 6 p.m. Pacific. It’s a one-time gig “for now,” a spokesperson for KCRW told The Times, adding that it’s the first time a fictional character has hosted a show for the beloved local station.

“So you better get out your transistor radio and listen to my amazing voice!” the “Pee-wee’s Playhouse” star added.

Former producer Cerise Castle claims she experienced a pattern of racist behavior while working at KCRW. The station disputes some of her allegations.

Feb. 25, 2021

Monday on Twitter, he requested that the station’s staff have his favorite donuts — “but ZERO crullers” — ready and waiting for him.

KCRW is a community service of Santa Monica College and renowned for its music programming, including “Morning Becomes Eclectic.” It airs in and around L.A., Santa Barbara, Ventura, Mojave, Palm Springs and San Luis Obispo, in Berlin, Germany, via the KCRW-developed smart phone app and online.


Earlier this year, the Santa Monica-based station came under fire after a former news producer alleged that she experienced a pattern of racist behavior while working there.