Colbert To Replace Letterman On CBS: Will It Work?

MichaelKolander by MichaelKolander on Apr. 10, 2014

Well, that didn't take long

CBS has announced that Stephen Colbert will replace David Letterman as the host of The Late Show sometime in 2015. Letterman announced his retirement just last week, and is expected to end his 33-year career as a late-night host sometime next summer.

Unfortunately for fans of Colbert, this will mean an end to the wildly popular Colbert Report, Comedy Central's long-running political satire. And while nothing has been confirmed, it will probably mean an end to Colbert's right-wing pundit persona, which will most likely be replaced by Colbert playing it straight, relatively speaking. Even so, it's a huge opportunity for Colbert to find an even larger audience.

"Simply being a guest on David Letterman's show has been a highlight of my career," Colbert said in a statement regarding the takeover. "I never dreamed that I would follow in his footsteps, though everyone in late night follows Dave's lead. I'm thrilled and grateful that CBS chose me. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go grind a gap in my front teeth."

While there's no question that Colbert is a skilled comedian, there's a big difference between network television and cable. Not to mention the fact that CBS's viewers definitely skew toward an older demographic. In a world where David Letterman was often chided for playing political favorites, how will a host who has made a name for himself by mocking conservatives be received? Granted, maybe the entire point of the move is to bring in fresh blood, but younger viewers tend to shy away from network television, so there's no guarantee they will follow.

What do you think? Will Colbert inject new life into CBS's late-night lineup, or will he crash and burn in a sea of unimpressed elderly viewers?

By the way, what about poor Craig Ferguson?

Diana Weld
Diana Weld

Am still a Widow and its like a Break up

Roberta Lajeuness
Roberta Lajeuness

i dont know if i can get use to this seen i have rely enjoyed david letterman for years

Tim Bucklin
Tim Bucklin

I'm sure that Paul will retire with, don't you think?

LordDrakos User

I am so surprised that Jon Stewart wasn't considered. He is funny as hell, smart and witty. He also cares about truth and justice. The difficult thing about this is that most candidates are overshadowed by political influence.

Lexi-Mize-364 User

Colbert is catching. Millennials are having their way...

Brian Pettersen
Brian Pettersen

Well it goes from a show I hardly ever watch, to a show I'll never watch.

Samuel-Brownfield-372 User

I think that Colbert staying with his show would be better for everybody.  Better viewing time, better format and freedom for Colbert's comedy.  blah

TheGreatDutchMan User

Well ... I hate Colbert for beeing a republican ass on his show. Can't believe that he will replace Letterman that is clearly not on any of those sides. I can imagine that the republican party has payed CBS a buck load of money for Colbert to be the new host and I'm pretty sure that The Late Show will provide it's viewers with some voting advice in favour of the republican party.

Besides that .... I like Jon Stewart better; he's an intelligent, true and funny man.

Bryan Lee
Bryan Lee

I hope the first thing he does is execute Paul Schaffer.

rzimm1021 User

I read that Ferguson has in his contract with CBS that he would replace Letterman if Letterman ever left.  If they chose anyone else Ferguson would receive $5 million.  Not to shabby

Ferlin Getty Then what was your original point?

wilbunk User

Colbert report was my favorite show, hope he doesn't do it :(

Jan Stevens
Jan Stevens

Colbert is perfect to replace Letterman.

Valeasaz User

yep the show's dead. Not like it was going to survive anyway...

Thomas Cantlon
Thomas Cantlon

LOL people saying Colbert isn't funny, his humor is just above your level of intelligence if you say that

BlankTitanic User

Yeah, the old farts are gonna be like 'FTW'?

Ferlin Getty
Ferlin Getty

Dear Uh...I noticed that a LONG time ago, but thanks for playing. DUHHHHHH!

Colbert's entire show is parody. When Letterman does parody, it's a one-off skit.

Grant Caudle
Grant Caudle

Horrible news !! Should have been Ferguson

Cool-Jon-1 User

Who care about Craig Ferguson? I laugh at dirt more often than him.

Interwoven User

His unrelenting atheistic liberal ideology definitely has a niche in our culture, but after a while it just started grinding at my mind. Hard time making it through an entire show. Will be interesting to see if he can really shake his alter-ego.


@Valeasazthe Tonight Show that has been running strong since 1993 or The Colbert Report, which has a HUGE fan base. It doesn't matter, either way you just went full retard 

Thomas-Boneck-815 User

You are correct sir. Glad I'm not the only Thomas to realize this.