Truly, it’s a finish of a Colbera.
And what an finish it was! The final part of The Colbert Report—which began, as his shows mostly did, with a toss from Colbert’s aged boss/buddy Jon Stewart—started off slow; a mistake pundit didn’t even rigourously acknowledge that tonight’s half-hour would be his final until median by his initial segment.
That’s when he offering adult his unequivocally final Word: “Same to You, Pal.” The bit gave Colbert a possibility to riff on how small has truly altered given this array debuted in 2005—once again, we’ve got people on TV fortifying torture, a Bush administrator using for president, and infantry being sent into Iraq—and to give an aspiring (but not too earnest) thank-you to his constant fans, a Colbert Nation. As Colbert said, a “incredible things people contend we did” weren’t achieved by him alone: “None of that was unequivocally me. You, a nation, did all of that. we only got paid for it.”
His difference were predictable, though heartfelt—exactly a arrange of thing you’d design to see from a speak uncover host’s final broadcast.
And that’s when things got weird.
Colbert’s listed guest for tonight was “Grimmy”—a.k.a. a Grim Reaper, a impression listed on a series’ website as “Stephen’s co-worker and lifelong friend.” We’ve seen him before on a show, in a Seventh Seal-inspired opening titles for a repeated shred “Cheating Death with Dr. Stephen T. Colbert, D.F.A.” Those same titles welcomed Grimmy to a uncover once again tonight, personification as they have several times in a past—until Colbert and a Reaper’s aged chess diversion took a thespian new turn.
An abrupt cut to a immature shade where Colbert and Grimmy were sharpened their bit revealed that this time, Colbert had successfully collected all 3 of a Deathly Hallows incidentally murdered his aged companion Grimmy with his favorite handgun. Which, as a horde fast realized, meant that he’d officially achieved immortality. (So many for all those theories that a genuine Colbert was formulation to kill off this impression before relocating to CBS subsequent year.)
After a subsequent blurb break, a newly-“immortal” Colbert ushered in a shred we’d all tacitly been watchful for: a celebrity-stuffed sing-along, featuring what was maybe a many gloriously pointless collection of boldfaced names ever fabricated in one room.
A prejudiced list of a folks who showed adult in chairman to sing a aged customary “We’ll Meet Again” with Colbert: Randy Newman (on a piano, natch), Jon Stewart (of course), Bryan Cranston, Willie Nelson, Mandy Patinkin, Tom Brokaw, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Big Bird, Cyndi Lauper, Sam Waterston, Katie Couric, Gloria Steinem, Cookie Monster, James Franco, Michael Stipe, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Barry Manilow, Jeff Daniels, Andy Cohen, Jeff Tweedy of Wilco, Patrick Stewart, Ariana Huffington, George Lucas, Alan Alda, New Jersey senator Cory Booker, Elijah Wood, former New York administrator Eliot Spitzer, Tim Meadows, Keith Olbermann, Shane Smith, Ken Burns, Mark Cuban, Paul Krugman, Mike Huckabee, Grover Norquist, and Henry Kissinger. Vince Gilligan, still being hold serf in Colbert’s basement, assimilated around video; so did Bill Clinton (tweeting with a comment Colbert built for him), and a couple of soldiers in Afghanistan, and Colbert’s Latino change ego Esteban Colberto, and J.J. Abrams, and Smaug a dragon, and an wanderer using on the C.O.L.B.E.R.T. treadmill in space.
It was, in short, a stirring diversion of spot-the-celebrity Where’s Waldo—but that wasn’t a finish of a show.
Instead, a final Report finished with Colbert roving to a roof of his studio to accommodate adult with 3 some-more immortals: Santa Claus, Abraham Lincoln (who, by a way, is indeed a unicorn), and “the one with all a answers.” For one heart-stopping moment, we suspicion that meant Papa Bear Bill O’Reilly—but no, a contingent was finished by Jeopardy! horde Alex Trebek. (His best line: “The critical answers contingency all be in a form of a question.”)
Colbert finished a uncover drifting off in Santa’s sleigh, thanking everybody who’s helped to make the Report probable for a past 9 years—then tossing behind to Jon Stewart, who introduced one final final clip, a gag-reel-worthy impulse of Stewart/Colbert communication from 2010.
Ending a uncover this approach was a savvy pierce that helps remind audiences that, yes, a “Stephen Colbert” we’ve been examination for scarcely a decade isn’t the real Stephen Colbert. Symbolically, it’s a ideal approach to transition into Colbert finally holding on a purpose of his loyal self. At a same time, Fake Colbert’s thoroughfare into “immortality” indicates that Real Colbert might not be prepared to let go of his aged persona quite yet; after all, a male who helmed the Report is only a sleigh float away.
And possibly way—when it comes to this show, during least—we know who’s truly removing a final word:
I altered a world!
— Stephen Colbert (@StephenAtHome) December 19, 2014