Colbert draws 6.6 million audience in ‘Late Show’ debut

10 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Colbert attracts big crowd for first ‘Late Show’: Will politics bring them back?.

After all the build-up for Jeb Bush’s appearance on Stephen Colbert’s first show as the host of “The Late Show,” on CBS, I tuned in half expecting the excitement of Dan Rather’s 1998 interview of George H. From the very opening moments of The Late Show, it was obvious its host was trying to put aside any memory of “Stephen Colbert”, the character that fronted The Colbert Report on Comedy Central for a decade.Yes, the new host of the CBS “Late Show” officially premiered Tuesday night (Sept. 8) as David Letterman’s much-anticipated replacement for the vaunted late night slot.Don’t take Stephen Colbert too seriously when he says, as he did on his late-night CBS debut Tuesday, that he is searching for the real Stephen Colbert. Colbert’s debut had about 3.6 million more viewers than Jimmy Fallon’s “The Tonight Show” and about 4.8 million more viewers than ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” Mr.

For a different side of the multifaceted comic, however, there’s a new interview in which Colbert talks about his Catholicism with the kind of passion and humor that evoke the folksy faith of Francis, who will be making his own debut later this month when he visits the U.S. for the first time. Colbert’s taped interview had all the tension of two distant cousins meeting at a wedding, and all the specificity of a typical Jeb stump speech, which is to say not very much. Colbert has reportedly been moving heaven and earth to try to snag a few minutes with the pontiff, who visits Washington, New York and Philadelphia from Sept. 22-27.

While it’s premature to hold a coronation for a new king of late night, that was enough to double the ratings of “The Tonight Show” and was up more than 130 percent over last year’s ratings for the show. If the Report was a caricature of a talking-head program, the new Late Show was at its best when channelling that same meta-humor, making fun of (and deconstructing) the conventions of a talk show. Languishing in the polls and offered the opportunity to showcase himself during a major television event, Bush didn’t play an instrument, sing a song, or speak in Spanish. And in case anyone was missing the Colbert of old, there was still enough of a political bent to make this the late night show that tackles hard news better than any of its competitors.

James Martin, as his official chaplain and regular guest.) He has appeared with New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan, who also has a way with humor, to discuss joy and faith. And he has spoken eloquently about the tragedies of his childhood and the way faith sustained him, and continues to do so. “(M)y context for my existence, is that I am here to know God, love God, serve God, that we might be happy with each other in this world and with Him in the next — the catechism,” he said in a recent cover story for GQ magazine. “That makes a lot of sense to me.

The way his campaign has been going, he might well score that as a win. “This is incredible,” the former Florida governor said as he sat down in the guest chair. “This is on my highlight reel, for sure.” He was dressed in the standard uniform for aspiring Presidential candidates: an expensive-looking blue suit, a white shirt, and a conservative tie. This bit was truly bizarre, with Colbert explaining how he got the job by making a deal with an ancient demon who demanded he make regular sacrifices in order to maintain his perch. Colbert, who was clad in similar, if brighter fashion, opened up with the softest of softballs: Why do you want to be President? “Because I think we’re on the verge of the greatest time to be alive, but our government isn’t working,” Bush replied. “Washington is a complete basket case.” Rather than immediately asking the obvious follow-up, about whether this paralysis wasn’t largely the responsibility of the Republican Party, which controls both houses of Congress, and which has dedicated itself to rejecting virtually anything with President Obama’s name attached to it, Colbert inquired of Bush whether he could put an end to the “game of blood sport” that passes for politics.

Bush made a lame attempt at praising Obama, and only then did Colbert raise the notion of Republican responsibility, before backing off and phrasing a second question more generally. For fans of the ironic conservative parody he played for nearly a decade, the biggest surprise may have been his unabashed sincerity in everything from the opening montage, in which he sang “The Star-Spangled Banner” with folks across the nation, to his closing sing-a-long, “Everyday People.” “He reminded me of Fallon as much as his old self over at Comedy Central,” says Thompson, which means that Colbert has work to do in refining his new persona. Evidently sensing he was onto a winner, Bush offered that it was time “to restore a degree of civility” to politics. “I’ll restore a degree of civility right now,” Colbert said. “There is a non-zero chance that I would vote for you. Whether it was all a joke or “native advertising”, as the kids on the web call it, we’ll never know – at least not until the next time the amulet demands to be heeded. Thomas Rosica, English-language attache to the Vatican press office and head of the Toronto-based Salt and Light media network, Colbert’s answers range from the silly (Favorite saint: “St.

It was a strong contrast from David Letterman’s first episode on CBS in 1993, when he spent a good portion of his monologue bashing NBC, his former network. (The landscape has changed significantly since Mr. Colbert needs more of that old sharpness, agrees Wheeler Winston Dixon, film studies professor at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln. “Colbert needs more of a razor edge than he showed last night to separate himself from the pack,” he says.

You seem like a very reasonable guy who believes that governing is something that the government should do.” At this juncture Bush, perhaps concerned that this nice-sounding interviewer was luring him into saying something that would outrage conservative Republicans, or that Colbert’s researchers hadn’t read up on his record, reaffirmed his commitment to reducing the size of the government. ”I think it should be smaller,” he said. “Government plays a useful role, but it ought to be reformed. In this social media age, where much of the war for the hearts and minds of late-night viewers is fought in the online space the next day, “he also needs more viral segments – which Fallon specializes in – to rise to the top,” he writes in an e-mail. And that’s why, when I was governor of the state of Florida, I turned the system upside down … particularly with schools.” This was another point at which Colbert could have probed Bush’s record as governor, which also included gutting labor laws, curtailing affirmative action at state colleges, and cutting taxes for the richest Floridians. Likening Trump jokes to Oreos and junk food, Colbert allowed himself to tell a whole series of them, only to point out that there has to be something better to talk about – that these anecdotes are just empty calories.

Fallon has dominated the ratings since he took over as host 18 months ago, and he was rewarded last month when NBC announced that it had extended his contract through 2021. But Colbert already has helped to reshape expectations for late-night success with his own show, “The Colbert Report,” says James Farrelly, a professor of English and director of film studies at University of Dayton. Instead, he joked about the Presidential photos that appear in schools and lobbed another softball, inquiring about Bush’s campaign slogan, “Jeb!” “It connotes excitement,” Bush said, with a smile.

A rather awkward interview with , who, it was made clear several times, was not there to promote a project, turned out to have been intentionally awkward. Then came another human moment, when Colbert brought up Barbara Bush’s statement, from 2013, since rescinded, that “We’ve had enough Bushes.” “It was a little embarrassing,” Bush admitted. Both men ran out of things to say to each other and sat in stony silence for a few moments before inventing a fake movie for Clooney to plug, complete with clips obviously recorded earlier. This is what Colbert has been doing all along: taking the things he sees in the media landscape, following them to their logical and absurd conclusions, then repackaging them with clever observation to render them ludicrously harmless.

It smells not only of vintage Colbert Report, but also the early days of David Letterman, who was making a meta-talk show because Johnny Carson wouldn’t let him have any of the regular set pieces. And he would ask him about being “a fool for Christ” — a role he sees Francis playing, as well as Colbert himself. “Doing something joyfully doesn’t make something any easier, it only makes it better. He didn’t bring order, fiscal restraint.” Bush, in an effort to reassure conservatives, is promising to be different, at least on spending. “They called me Veto Corleone in Florida,” he went on, repeating a line he uses all the time. “I vetoed twenty-five hundred separate line items in the budget.”

With Clooney it was obviously a gag, but opposite his other guest, Jeb Bush, it came across as nerves or over-eagerness, like a golden retriever who’d fetched a felled duck out of the reeds. We’ll have to check in several months from now to see how his mile-high view of the talkshow translates when he has five outings a week and not nearly as much time to plan them. So hopefully I can use my mind to make my jokes and not deny my love for God at the same time.” “I think you have to make a choice to perceive Christ in the people around you, and to love them without fear that anything will be taken from you in the gift that you give them of your own love.”

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