Before Stephen Colbert returns to late night television, he’s giving his fans some hold-over comedy in an eclectic series of videos online.
This week Colbert took to the Internet in one of his most random moves yet: filling in as host of the Michigan public-access cable TV show, “Only in Monroe.” Over about 42 minutes, Colbert employed his old “Colbert Report” format and offered some local Monroe County news, talked with the actual “Only in Monroe” hosts and brought on a surprise guest: Grammy Award winning rapper Eminem who grew up in Detroit.
After Colbert introduced Eminem as “a local Michigander who is making a name for himself in the competitive world of music,” the two sang Bob Seger songs, discussed Eminem’s financial future and discussed the “rap world.”
The discussion ranged from funny to somewhat awkward as the rapper, whose real name is Marshall Mathers, plugged the upcoming movie “Southpaw,” which features one of his songs. While no longer playing his “Colbert Report” character of an exaggerated right-wing pundit, Colbert still played with Eminem using his trademark false veil of misunderstanding.
“So, where do you hope this goes? Is this a career or more of a hobby?” Colbert asked the wildly successful rapper, who appeared to not know if Colbert was joking. “There’s a certain point you have to be humble and say, ‘Maybe it doesn’t happen for me.’ Maybe it doesn’t happen for you, Marshall.”
This is only the latest in a series of videos Colbert’s posted to his “Late Show” YouTube channel. He’s shaved his “Colbeard” while eating a hot dog with a fork; announced his new band leader Jon Batiste, a New Orleans musician who appeared on the “Report” several times; and just last week, congratulated the LGBTQ community following the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in favor of same-sex marriage.
“History moves fast,” he said in that video. “It’s hard to believe that gay Americans achieved full constitutional personhood just five years after corporations did.”