6 Thoughts about The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

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6 Thoughts about The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

Thanks to Tom McAuliffe for this awesome graphic

Stephen Colbert will take over as host of The Late Show in 2015 replacing the long-running David Letterman. I will miss Dave, but honestly, I haven’t really watched him much in recent years. I have really enjoyed The Colbert Report and look forward to him taking over. I would like to have seen Conan have another shot at replacing Letterman, but his network ship has probably already sailed.

A few random thoughts and predictions of mine (none of this is for sure, just what I think will happen):

1. Colbert will not keep his ultra-conservative persona for The Late Show. I think we’ll see him continue his very dry and satirical approach to comedy. I assume a few bits will translate over (like “The Word” or “Tip of the Hat…”). I also think he’ll keep his narcissism.

2. The Late Show will stay in the Ed Sullivan Theater (EST). CBS owns this building. It is historic and I would guess there’s no need to dump it and set up shop elsewhere. The Colbert Report already records in NYC. There might be some appeal to move the show to LA, but I just don’t see that happening.

3. Dates for Letterman’s departure have not been finalized, but I would guess he’ll wrap up in May of 2015 with Colbert taking over in the Fall to give them time to overhaul the theater. Or, Colbert sets up shop in a temporary studio for the summer and then moves to the EST once it’s complete.

4. Colbert will stick pretty close to the typical format of a late night talk show. There’ll be a band (as unlikely as it would be, Ben Folds comes to mind as an idea for this gig), monologue, comedy segments, he’ll sit behind a desk, and there’ll be guests. I can’t see him bringing in a sidekick though.

5. Not only will Letterman have a year to say farewell to his television audience, but The Colbert Report shutting down also means it gets a year to say farewell. I fully expect a lot of great shows from each of them over the next year or so as they wind it down.

6. When all is said and done, Colbert will not be the ratings leader in that time slot. He’ll have his audience, but his humor is too dry and he himself is not generally endearing enough to have the mass appeal he’ll need to win. But, I think he’ll do well enough to have a good run.

By | 2018-08-18T20:36:40+00:00 April 10th, 2014|Categories: Article|Tags: , , |0 Comments

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  1. CT February 26, 2017 at 12:48 am - Reply

    Whether Colbert moved to the Late Show or not, I think it was just a matter of time before he moved on from The Colbert Report. Playing the same role for almost ten years straight is a good run for anyone. (It's not like he's on Supernatural and apparently had 20 more years left in him.)

    But, I have faith in his talent. I think he'll be able to make the transition from "Stephen Colbert" to Stephen Colbert. He's super smart and incredibly witty. It may take some time for audiences to adjust so how he spend the next 12-18 months will be really important. But he can do it. I believe in him.

  2. Sue London February 26, 2017 at 12:48 am - Reply

    I see this as a lose-lose proposition. Agree that Stephen will never have the mass popularity that is expected of network personalities AND we will lose the Colbert Report. It will super-shock me if this works out well.

    Although I would certainly be happy to find out I'm wrong.

  3. Paxton February 26, 2017 at 12:48 am - Reply

    Agreed, I think the ultra-conservative parts of his Colbert Report persona will fade away but the overall "feel" of it will be the same. It'll be a solid show, just not a ratings avalanche.

  4. Carlin Trammel February 26, 2017 at 12:48 am - Reply

    Prediction update:

    1. We will still have to wait and see what he actually does on the show, but it's been confirmed that the character from The Colbert Report is essentially over and Colbert will have a new persona.

    2. Confirmed. http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/stephen-colberts-late-show-stay-720643

    3. Letterman wraps tonight, May 20, 2015.

    4. Still remains to be seen.

    5. Yep.

    6. We'll see in the Fall, but I don't think this is a far-fetched prediction.

  5. Erik Johnson Illustrator February 26, 2017 at 12:48 am - Reply

    One of my first paid gigs after college involved a caricature of Letterman. I've been thinking about wanting to do something like that again, but maybe I should get the jump on everything on do something with Stephen instead.

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