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Stephen Colbert puts his stamp on Late Night


Tuesday night was Stephen Colbert’s first behind the desk at the Late Show since taking the reigns from David Letterman, and even in the new venue, it was the same old Colbert. 

His first night at Manhattan’s Ed Sullivan Theater featured Oreo munching, cursed amulets, and lots of Donald Trump jokes.

But there was some classic Colbert as well.

The show opened with skit featuring Colbert travelling America — from the baseball diamond to the Washington Monument — singing the Star Spangled Banner, with a (perhaps not so surprising) surprise visit from Jon Stewart.

During his interviews — one with George Clooney, the other with Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush — Colbert cast aside his bombastic conservative alter-ego, but hung on to the razor wit that’s made him a household name. 

“I used to play a narcissistic conservative pundit,” he told Bush. “Now I’m just a narcissist.”

The show closed with a performance of Sly and the Family Stone’s Everyday People by the new house band, Jon Batiste and Stay Human, with an ensemble featuring soul legend Mavis Staples, Aloe Blacc, Ben Folds, Buddy Guy, Derek Trucks and others. 

Online, many thought the show was a success. 

But there was some criticism, too. Some thought the lighting was a bit, well, orange. 

Some didn’t like the show at all. 

And for others, it’ll probably just take a little getting used to.

So here’s to the first one down, and many more to go.

The guest list for Colbert’s first week of shows includes U.S. vice president Joe Biden, the CEOs of Tesla Motors and Uber, comic Amy Schumer, actress Scarlett Johansson and author Stephen King.

CBC | Arts News

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