this week in late night

The Normal People Stars Making ‘Crab’ Sexy Won Late Night This Week

“Fresh crab.” Photo: Courtesy of The Late Late Show with James Corden/YouTube

Not gonna lie, I’m finding it harder to come up with pithy openings to this column considering I spend 23 hours a day indoors. But just because I have nothing incredibly interesting to say doesn’t mean that interesting things did not happen this week in the late-night universe. Hasan Minaj announced that Patriot Act would begin airing remotely filmed episodes on May 17, and A Little Late With Lilly Singh has been renewed for a second season. If Singh’s show has been renewed for a second season, that’s surely a sign that we will all survive the summer and have second seasons of our own lives as well, yes? Let’s hope so and dive into the best clips from late-night television this week.

5. Leslie Odom Jr.’s Gracious Daughter on The Late Late Show

Let that little girl in there! Tony Award–winner and golden-voiced crooner Leslie Odom Jr. appeared on The Late Late Show With James Corden and performed his hit single “Go Crazy” with a little unexpected help from his 3-year-old daughter, Lucille Ruby. In a red dress matching her father’s red suit (as the saying goes: like father, like daughter), little Lucille pranced in and out of the screen as she saw fit, sometimes flapping her arms along to the music, sometimes not. She’s clearly an artist and she does what she wants. Odom Jr., a consummate professional, went on with his performance despite the distraction, only laughing at his daughter’s adorable antics a handful of times. At the end of the performance, Lucille Ruby said, “Thank you, musicians” who accompanied her father on the television screen behind him. Lucille Ruby Odom, already a class act.

4. Amy Schumer Addresses Naming Her Son Genital on Late Night With Seth Meyers

Gene Attell Fischer. Gene Attell. Genital. This is the error that Amy Schumer and her husband, chef Chris Fischer, were trying to rectify when they decided to change the name of their son 11 months after he was born. The couple stopped by Late Night With Seth Meyers and shared their journey about making the difficult decision, albeit probably necessary one. Before getting into the renaming debacle, a lot was revealed about the close bond between Fischer and Meyers’s wife, Alexi Ashe, including, but not limited to, the fact that Fischer attended her bat mitzvah wearing Birkenstocks. What a fashion faux pas. As for the name change, Schumer claims it was an honest mistake (“By accident, we named our son Genital”). We’ve all been there, right? They eventually decided to swap out the Attell, originally a tribute to comedian Dave Attell, for David, in honor of Schumer’s father. While Gene David Fischer is a lovely name, it doesn’t have quite the same ring as Genital Gene Attell Fischer.

3. Paul F. Tompkins Reminds Us of Great Moments That Happened Indoors

“Oh, hello. I didn’t see you there. I was looking at a book,” said Man Who Dresses Like a Professor Paul F. Tompkins as he kicked off a segment about the great indoors on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. Tompkins took us on a much-needed tour of incredible things that happened inside, like the first baseball game at the Houston Astrodome (which is still being played because … baseball) and the moon landing (astronauts wear space suits, so they are always technically indoors). Tompkins and his yellow vest painted a vivid picture of all that one can achieve indoors until he made the classic mistake of mixing up great moments indoors, i.e., being inside, with great moments in Doors, i.e., memorable moments in the history of the band The Doors. But, to be fair, most of The Doors’ performances were indoors, so we’ll let it slide.

2. Christine Baranski Reveals the Making of “The Ladies Who Lunch” Video

Can you tell I love a dame? Iconic actress Christine Baranski stopped by The Late Show With Stephen Colbert to share how her talented, brilliant, incredible, amazing, showstopping, spectacular, never-the-same, totally unique performance of “Ladies Who Lunch” for Sondheim’s 90th birthday concert with legends Meryl Streep and Audra McDonald came to be. It turns out that Baranski, Streep, McDonald, and Sondheim once had dinner at marvelous Italian restaurants — which I swear is a dream I had once — and that it was Baranski’s idea to get the girls together and pay tribute to their dear friend Stephen Sondheim in lieu of getting dinner again because of the global pandemic. Her mind. Apparently, Baranski recorded so many takes of the song that her 4-year-old grandson, who’s quarantining with her in Connecticut, said that “he never wants to hear that song again.” Well, I guess now I have to fight a 4-year-old.

1. The Normal People Teens Make QVC and Guy Fieri Sexy on The Late Late Show

Perhaps it’s because we have hit two months in quarantine without feeling the touch of another human being, but watching the stars of Hulu’s Normal People, Daisy Edgar-Jones and Paul Mescal, re-create QVC dialogue in a sexy way got me all hot and bothered. As the kids say, it made me horny, and I’m not proud of that. Marianne and Connell appeared on The Late Late Show With James Corden and were saddled with the seemingly impossible task of making decidedly unsexy dialogue sexy, but somehow they passed with flying colors. Mescal imitating Guy Fieri inquiring about how long to let a hot mushroom sandwich “steep”? Hot. Edgar-Jones describing joggers that could be worn while meeting up with the girls and grabbing a cocktail after work? Incredibly sensual. It definitely helps that they’re both great actors who are very attractive (Edgar-Jones is what happens when you put Anne Hathaway through Martin Scorsese’s Irishman de-aging technology). Corden also played the Normal People music underneath their dialogue, which set the mood, but the segment was impressive nonetheless. Eventually, Mescal lost it when Edgar-Jones asked him about “fresh crab,” which makes sense — it’s practically impossible to make the word crab sound sexy. If you don’t believe me, try it at home. See? I told you so.

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The Normal People Stars Won Late Night This Week