Colbert has good week in ratings despite controversy

Late Show host Stephen Colbert steps out of his normal persona to warn viewers about the dangers of Trump’s policies

In this photo provided by CBS, guest Jon Stewart, left, speaks with host Stephen Colbert on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert", during the television show on Tuesday, May 9, 2017, in NY. Bee hosts "Full Frontal", Oliver leads the award-winning "Last Week Tonight" and, of course, there is "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert".

Why? Well first of all, the entire hullabaloo turned out to be largely drummed up by right-wing provocateurs.

The joke prompted complaints that it was homophobic, with some liberals arguing that Colbert's joke would prompt a good deal more outrage if a conservative had delivered it. Sure, but now we're talking about a line comedians aren't allowed to cross, and we promise that scenario doesn't end well when drawn out.

While there were impromptu acts by the guests, the show also took on a traditional format in between where Stewart and Colbert talked about Trump's firing of Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey.

"I learned it from you, Dad", Colbert responded. Later, during his interview with Stewart, Colbert asked the crowd directly: "When I said that Comey was sacked by Trump, you all cheered. Why?"

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"That I do", Colbert replied.

"No, you know what you've got", Stewart interjected.

"I can't believe you're leaving us", echoed Helms.

Getting serious, he said he appreciated the time spent with family since his departure from the Comedy Central series. "And you need them to give you some content so you have to be really nice to them all day".

The two then launched into a deeper conversation about James Comey's termination from his post, Bill O'Reilly's ouster at Fox news, and how Stewart feels about being off air during such a tumultuous time.

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In this week's Time chat, Trump noted he's appeared on Colbert's CBS show (once), claiming "it was very highly rated ... it was the highest rating he's ever done". As he packed away his iBook and lucky Steve Carrel mug, Samantha Bee - wearing a perm and sequined jacket - walked in to declare her surprise at Colbert's decision to leave during George W. Bush's presidency. Does Stewart miss being on TV?

All five of the former Daily Show correspondents have found success post-Daily Show. And for that brief shiny moment, The Late Show was hilarious, though not in the least as Colbert intended.

"We went out to a cross burning in the summertime, as you do", Colbert said, noting the Klan didn't take kindly to the Comedy Central show.

"Now, if you saw my monologue Monday, you know that I was a little upset at Donald Trump for insulting a friend of mine". The scene showed Bee entering the room, with a perm and a jacket, and she started lamenting about Colbert's departure from the show.

"The process of making the show somehow became intwined with my process of making sense of things that I didn't understand", he said, "so I miss that".

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"I want to thank all of you guys for being here", he said to Bee Oliver, Helms and Corrdry.

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