Before we get into what worked on late night this week, let’s talk about what didn’t. The convergence of Oscar nominations announcements and the last debate before primary voting kicks off led to another joke shared by almost every show: The debate stage was so white, something something Academy Awards! Stephen Colbert’s punchline was probably the most satisfying, because it was the most oblique: “Once again, J.Lo was robbed.” Solid! You can make the easiest joke, or you can make the second easiest joke. Aim higher. I would have enjoyed a Greta Gerwig eating all the candidates’ soup reference, for example. Anyway, here’s the best non-Oscars jokes of the week.
5. James Corden Cops to Wearing Spanx
Mrs. Maisel and Mizz Ru talked corsets on The Late Late Show Monday night. Not to be left out, James Corden let it drop that he wears Spanx under his suits. Here I thought the main benefit of wearing a blazer is that it covers any hegemonically derided body lumps. We’ve always got to give it to James Corden for reminding us that all bodies are disgusting in the eyes of TV executives.
4. Andy Richter Didn’t See Parasite
We all have that friend who doesn’t see the prestige films but keeps their head above water in the Film Discourse. (Full Disclosure: I am that friend.) Apparently the Conan office’s Fake Film Fan is Andy Richter. Conan and Andy used their recurring sketch format of doing out-of-body audience asides to lay out all the underlying tensions in a discussion of Parasite. This OOBAA sketch ended with three different Andys and Conans onstage, and that’s just good fun.
3. Just Clips of Amy Schumer’s Wedding
John Early officiated Amy Schumer’s wedding in 2018 as his character “Vicki with a V.” And since Diplo wasn’t there, not a lot of footage leaked. On Late Night With Seth Meyers, Early brought clips of the blessed event so we finally got to see Vicki proposition the groom. We also got to see Early’s nips through his shirt. A bountiful gift of a clip.
2. The Subtleties of “Wooo!” Acting
Dan Chamberlain did so many different kinds of “Wooo!” in this sketch. Apparently something happened in a football game and people got mad about it. But that was only window dressing on a fun character piece reminiscent of The Interrupter in its construction. Wisconsin Cheese Hats off to you, Dan.
1. Todd Glass Just Having Fun Out There
It’s hard to beat Todd Glass when he’s On One. Glass and his band stopped by Jimmy Kimmel Live! and just had fun out there. They kept it loose and off rhythm. Even though this piece was undoubtedly shot at like 3 p.m., Glass’ set felt like it was occurring late at night. You don’t often get that vibe on late night. Not even Colbert’s actually live post-debate monologue had the frisson of live TV. With Glass, you get the sense that anything can happen.
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