INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Sept. 11, 2015)-- Anyone online knows exactly how Stephen Colbert spent his summer vacation. The Late Show host created buzz for the debut of his CBS show by posting comedy clips on the Internet. Everything from shaving his late, great ‘Cole-beard’ to hosting a fictional cable access show with rapper Eminem as the reluctant guest.
"What you are seeing is our own sense of humor, it's not the show you're going to see on CBS, it's not live, it's in the beautiful Ed Sullivan Theatre. We don't have musical guests, we can't produce things, you're just desperately seeing us give the audience anything," said Colbert.
But the Internet content does give a glimpse into what Colbert’s Late Show will look like, at least partly. Online clips that fans can click on the next day at work have become as much a measure of late night TV success as the ratings. Colbert’s competitors have made "mean tweets" and "slow jamming the news," a key part of their shows.
“Yes, why are we doing it at night! Why don't we do it during the ordinary work day? I think you might have hit on something," joked Colbert.
It’s just one way Colbert’s show will look very different than Letterman’s.
"We always did it in the old show too, our old show was very bite sized, there were always segments that were either reproducible-- you could cut into small pieces. But that's not how you do the show, that's just the byproduct of doing sketch comedy, it's always small and shareable," said Colbert.
If nothing else, the online videos gave Colbert and his staff a creative outlet that he says they desperately needed as they waited months to take the Late Show stage.
"Doing comedy in theory? No fun. Doing comedy in reality? A lot of fun," Colbert said.