April 10, 2014

Stephen Colbert will replace Letterman.

"Simply being a guest on David Letterman's show has been a highlight of my career. I never dreamed that I would follow in his footsteps, though everyone in late night follows Dave's lead. I'm thrilled and grateful that CBS chose me. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go grind a gap in my front teeth."

What do you think of Colbert replacing Letterman?
  
pollcode.com free polls 

79 comments:

Hagar said...

Good news for the Tonight Show.

mccullough said...

He seems most like Letterman.

Kirk said...

Colbert adds the period to the sentence that there will never be another Johnny Carson.

Martha said...

Jon Stewart thinks he was overlooked.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

I generally enjoy Colbert's extreme conservative act, but I can't imagine that will work for the late-show format. If he doesn't have much more range than I've see I expect he will not last long.

SomeoneHasToSayIt said...

This is great news for Fallon nad NBC ratings.

Colbert is a no-talent hack poser.

Fallon, though I disagree strongly with his politics, has real talent.

Ignorance is Bliss said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Brando said...

So who'll be the new captain of the Titanic? Or the new pilot for the Hindenberg?

gspencer said...

Huge amount of promotion of leftism and leftist causes on its way.

damikesc said...

Great, a tired boring act gets a bigger stage.

Well, he IS replacing a tired and boring act. I guess putting Ferguson out there might show bad Letterman has been for years. Colbert won't do that since he is a yawner as is.

Patrick O said...

Interesting. Will he be Stephen Colbert himself or Stephen Colbert the character?

I think he's a funny guy who pokes fun in every direction. Ideal pick? Maybe not, but a good one. I'll DVR it the first week and see.

Nonapod said...

They went the safe, easy route. Personally I would've preferred someone a bit different, like Amy Poehler.

rhhardin said...

I liked the classic online Colbert interviews of institution spokesmen, eg the Harvard school of government.

He knows what will get to them.

Chef Mojo said...

Wow. It looks like "Could give a shit" is winning by a country mile.

Ctmom4 said...

Colbert was the speaker at my son's graduation -Northwestern, his alma mater. I was prepared to hate him. To my surprise, he was charming and very funny, and not at all political. I think he could be good if he puts the politics aside, but I suspect he will pander.

Bob Ellison said...

It's a shame that Paul Shaffer is also leaving. He has done a lot of great work with SNL, This is Spinal Tap, and Letterman, and he didn't make people righteously angry.

He's been around a long time but is only 64, so maybe he'll do something new now.

Scott M said...

Hopefully he'll be channeling more Phil Ken Sebben then Bill O'Reilly.

Robert Cook said...

I don't give a shit who replaces Letterman, but I'm disappointed Colbert will be leaving his show. I can appreciate he would like to have a bigger audience (and the higher pay CBS can provide), but his sharp take on current events--through the filter of a faux-O'Brien worldview--will be missed, and I can see no way he will not, inevitably, be forced to fit into the beyond-tired mold of the standard chat-show format...a few jokes to open up, canned "conversation" with celebs hawking their latest projects, a musical act to end the show.

R.I.P. Colbert Report.

Clayton Hennesey said...


Colbert is a no-talent hack poser.


Not true. Have you seen his pistachio period?

Titus said...

He's going to be himself-not Bill O'Reilly (papa bear).

Chuck said...

I voted "I like it."

Not because I like Colbert; I don't. And not because I am hopeful about the CBS late-night spot; I don't care.

The reason I like Colbert moving to a network is that he will be forced to moderate himself, and to deal more with mundane issues of popular culture and entertainment.

His persona as fake-pundit, which actually gave him a platform as a quasi-serious pundit, will be done.

Of course the networks all lean left. We know that. In practically everything they do, the national broadcast tv networks lean left. But they despise having to admit that. They can't hide behind "comedy/auteur/viewpoint" the way that the Comedy Channel routinely does.

This is a good thing.

Amichel said...

I was pulling for Craig Ferguson, I think he's the best late night TV interviewer I've seen. He seems to have the knack of making celebrity guests comfortable enough to reveal a bit of their personalities. Oh well, at least he'll be collecting a hefty fine from CBS for passing him over.

wildswan said...

Colbert likes to put on acts ridiculing this one, that one and the other one. But when he does that with Democrats or their positions such as Obamacare or Hilary and does it on this big stage, the former Letterman-Carson show, he will run into a buzz saw. True he will mostly ridicule conservatives and slam the Catholic church. But "mostly" isn't good enough for today's totalitarian liberals. So, as they say, "pass the popcorn."

tim in vermont said...

And we are going to get carefully crafted Republican arguments on wage gap between the sexes through the media how?

Robert Cook said...

"It looks like "Could give a shit" is winning by a country mile."

No. That's "couldn't" give a shit.

Jim said...

According to news reports, he'll be leaving his caricature of conservatives behind. He'll be as reliably left politically as always though, or Moonves wouldn't have chosen him. Don't believe for a minute that Ferguson's unwillingness to toe the CBS political party line didn't play a part in him not being chosen.

Mark said...

I think a lot of people who are not fans of his current show will be surprised.

He's extremely talented, works hard at what he does, and can do a good interview [if straight interview is what he is going for].

I expect his show on CBS will be very different than his current one. I bet we will see that character from time to time, but for the most part it will be the very charming actual man.

If it doesn't work out, I would imagine he will get enough guaranteed money to not need to work again.

I wouldn't bet against him.

DavidD said...

It'll be interesting to see, though, how long it takes Daily Show fans to realize that Colbert's purported conservatism was just his shtick.

RecChief said...

"Huge amount of promotion of leftism and leftist causes on its way."

More than Letterman?

wendybar said...

Oh great!! Another Progressive Liberal to bash the Conservatives on late night. I'll Pass.

Eric said...

CBS is the network that put Katie Couric in the national news anchor chair. This decision is no weirder.

john said...

Carson, and even Letterman, could create conversation that didn't center around them. Colbert has made a career of doing the opposite.

I don't see Colbert successfully migrating from a well-scripted position into one that he had to interact on an individual and ad-hoc basis.

FullMoon said...

Guess Betamax3000 never had a chance?

William Chadwick said...

The Hive loses Letterman; replaces him with Colbert. No ground lost; the ghost of Ellsworth Toohey smiles.

St. George said...

I guess Joey Bishop wasn't available.

Robert Cook said...

"It'll be interesting to see, though, how long it takes Daily Show fans to realize that Colbert's purported conservatism was just his shtick."

Uh...um...you don't think they know that already?

That's rhetorical: of course they already know it. That it's schtick is the whole point!

Chef Mojo said...

Cookie, you're obviously not from the South.

"I could give a shit about..." is how we tend to approach it here, meaning that the subject at hand is as meaningful as a polished turd. Which perfectly encapsulates the subject of Colbert replacing Letterman. At that hour of the night, I'm curled up with a good book.

Brando said...

Don't know how Colbert will fare with a different format and audience, but I always found Letterman insufferable because his jokes were never as funny as Conan's and he always seemed like a jerk (while Leno at least seemed like an inoffensive sort). His show always felt like he thought he was a cool guy pretending to be a dork, but he was actually a dork pretending to be a dork.

Plus, his feeling of entitlement to take over the Tonight Show just made him an arrogant ass. I loved the fact that a mediocrity like Leno could always beat him in ratings.

alan markus said...

"It looks like "Could give a shit" is winning by a country mile."

No. That's "couldn't" give a shit.


I think the results reflect the demographics of this group, i.e, we skew old.

The Roller said...

These facts should tell us all we need to know.

Twitter Followers...

Jimmy Kimmel 3.82 million.

Jimmy Fallon 12.3 million.

Steven Colbert 6.21 million.

Ann Althouse 4,883 thousand.

The Roller said...

These facts should tell us all we need to know.

Twitter Followers...

Jimmy Kimmel 3.82 million.

Jimmy Fallon 12.3 million.

Steven Colbert 6.21 million.

Ann Althouse 4,883 thousand.

Xmas said...

I'd like Craig Ferguson, but I doubt CBS would give him the slot. He's a little too out there. And, I'd suspect he'd have to lose Lesbian Row and Geoff Peterson if he moved to 11:30.

Secretariat, would stay, that horse is just pure comedy gold.

SOJO said...

I'm just relieved Letterman is retiring. He hasn't seemed into it for a long time. Looks like he waited until Leno was out.

Kirk Parker said...

Ah, Robert, so you don't understand irony? No surprise there...

traditionalguy said...

The man is funny. My choice would have been Chelsea Handler.

It's that old devil War on Women again.

harrogate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
harrogate said...

Wow, a huge margin of "I don't care" here. I wonder if that's representative of the US public? Has Letterman and Late Night generally entered its final days, or is it just the demographic that comments/ reads here, I wonder.

I clicked that I "like it," even though the persona he performed so well will be sorely missed. I think his talent and basic decency suggest that will do a really good job for CBS..... assuming there is an audience for it

Lonetown said...

Poll results in a word:

GRIM

prospects:

DIM

carrie said...

I never liked Letterman, but I do watch Jimmy Kimmel so I still like late night shows like his-at least Kimmel is willing to poke fun at the democrats as well as the Republicans. I think Fallon is in the tank for the Democrats so I won't waste my time watching him like I won't waste my time watching network news. My 20 something kids love Colbert, so it probably is a good move for CBS.

carrie said...

I never liked Letterman, but I do watch Jimmy Kimmel so I still like late night shows like his-at least Kimmel is willing to poke fun at the democrats as well as the Republicans. I think Fallon is in the tank for the Democrats so I won't waste my time watching him like I won't waste my time watching network news. My 20 something kids love Colbert, so it probably is a good move for CBS.

Curious George said...

"harrogate said...
I think his talent and basic decency suggest that will do a really good job for CBS..... assuming there is an audience for it"

Basic decency? What he did to W at the 2006 White House Correspondents' Dinner was disgusting. The guy is a fucking pig.

SteveR said...

I am inclined to believe he is going outside his reach. I could be wrong, of course, but his humor is limited. Suitable for Comedy Central. Beyond that we'll see, not exactly a growing market.

persiflage mahal said...

Althouse has 4,883,000 followers?
Damn!

harrogate said...

"What he did to W"

Jeez.

Wilbur said...

I don't give a whit about any of them, nor about who interviews celebrities the best, nor about the celebrities themselves.

Just no reason to do so.

Robert Cook said...

"Cookie, you're obviously not from the South."

I wasn't born in the south, but I grew up in the south from age 8.

I'm pointing out the grammatical error, which is the same as when someone says "I could care less."

What someone means by that is they don't care at all...so, they couldn't care any less. If they could care less, then, obviously, they care...to some degree.

If you "could give a shit," it means you care...to some degree.

William said...

Colbert is quick witted and funny, but his political biases are glaringly obvious, as were those of Letterman. He won't have any trouble picking up Letterman's audience, but good luck getting any conservative to watch him.....I recommend the Koch brothers start an outreach program to the late night comedy writers of America. Give them a thousand dollars for every late night gag about Obamacare foul ups or Pelosi Botox injections. If the right people are suborned, I'm sure we could make the world a more hospitable place for conservatives.

Curious George said...

"harrogate said...
"What he did to W"

Jeez."

Some rebuttal.

Amexpat said...

I voted for the I don't care option, because I don't watch Letterman any more and I don't care who his replacement is.

But, I like to pick winners and losers and I think Colbert will be a loser in this format. The faux conservative shtick wears thin and he hasn't shown that he can engage people with a "normal" persona.

exiledonmainst said...

OT (sorry), but I'm happy the Brewers are happy. I'm happy Brewer fans are happy. I'm happy that it appears to be a bipartisan happiness. But, sheesh, should everyone be so damned happy about a 5 game winning streak in April?

My guess is that after a frightful winter made worse by disappointing losses, cheeseheads are jumping at something to cheer about when it comes to sports.

http://m.mlb.com/video/v31947783/

Be happy - but the Pirates and the Cards are still ahead of us.

madAsHell said...

Of course, there is a segment of society that is dismayed that CBS selected another 40+ year old, white guy. White dudes with desks.

Personally, I thought Chelsea Handler would get the nod....not that I care, but it appeared that she was leaving her current commitments.

dbp said...

Stephen Colbert normally plays the part of characters that are pretty weird. For this gig, he will have to play a normal human being. I don't know if he has the range.

tim maguire said...

No one could replace the NBC Letterman. The CBS Letterman will not be missed.

Titus said...

Quit whiny bitches. Who do you think it was going to be? Jeff Foxworthy? Or Dennis Miller? Even that stupid conservative Jon Stewart thing you guys tried to cum off with was insufferable. Your the one's always bitching about liberals not being funny. Well the run the media-get over it. Find another outlet.

It's New York not Mayberry.

They don't give a shit about the old fat sexless demo.

cubanbob said...

I don't know what CBS is thinking. The audience/demographic of late night standard TV is different than the demographic of the Comedy Central. I doubt that this will work but who knows if it will at this point.

Your Husband said...

I haven't watched Letterman in a good 15 years. I had a college roommate who watched him religiously and for a while I thought he was 'the cool' late night guest. Then, one night the realization hit me that this guy just wasn't funny. He was stupid....and that was the last night I ever watched.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

I am sick of the racist patriarchy at CBS.

Catholic Colbert won't be so quick to rape his subordinates like Letterman though.

Unknown said...

Meh, I've never been a Colbert fan. Kinda looks like Bob Saget, but not as funny or dirty. Letterman should have retired a decade ago, but Colbert should have never started. Hate to make it racial, but I always got the sense that Colbert-appeal was one of those "stuff white people like."

Patrick said...

Robert is definitely correct about the caring, but I'm not so sure he's correct about the shit giving.

Rusty said...

So the quality of comedy will not change, then.

rcocean said...

The main thing is that bitter, phone-it-in, unfunny David Letterman is retiring. CBS should fired him in 2008, but that was their loss.

Evidently, late night shows are so cheap to produce, Colbert could probably have 2 million viewers and still make them money.

rcocean said...

I've seen no evidence that Colbert is funny without a script or can do a serious interview, but as shown by the love for John Stewart, the bar is pretty low these days.

zefal said...

"Bitter, pasty-white 'progressive' male being replaced by bitter, pasty-white 'progressive' male" was not one of the choices!

Here's his White House Correspondents' Dinner Bush diatribe: http://politicalhumor.about.com/od/stephencolbert/a/colbertbush.htm"

Imagine someone saying that to obama. The person would have to flee the country.

zefal said...

Patrick O said...

Interesting. Will he be Stephen Colbert himself or Stephen Colbert the character?

I think he's a funny guy who pokes fun in every direction. Ideal pick? Maybe not, but a good one. I'll DVR it the first week and see.

He says he's going to be himself. So you'll get the juvenile mocking he does without (the stolen from Pat Paulsen) persona.

Carter Wood said...

How propitious: Ion TV just showed the "Law and Order: Criminal Intent" episode with Stephen Colbert as a killer and forger. (Actually I've been impressed with the programmers at the lesser channels and their quickness to put on movies/programs that take advantage of breaking news. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0629591/?ref_=nm_flmg_act_22

NotquiteunBuckley said...

WINJA bear is no Packer, which is what I like.

J Lee said...

I suppose a lot of it is going to depend on what CBS wants. If the idea is to hold Dave's audience insofar as he's become the default monologist for those who try to avoid jokes about Obama or other Democrats at all costs, then they'll want something similar to what Colbert was bringing to his Comedy Central show, even if he's no longer in character.

If they're hoping for a bigger audience via not just trying to get younger viewers than Letterman but also by not deliberately rebuffing half the potential viewers, than you may see a Colbert similar to what Jimmy Fallon has done, which is to follow the Leno route of tweaking whichever pol or party happens to be the best target of ridicule that night. But if Stephen does that he probably needs to start from Week 1, when the largest number of viewers will be tuned in to see what Colbert -- real or in-character -- shows up.

Tarrou said...

Great, a guy whose sole schtick is ideological blackface.

Well, at least the late-night audience is already used to not laughing.

Eve'sBlog said...

I look forward to seeing him tank.