There’s a hell of a lot of work to be done to pull America out of the hell it’s been in for the last four years. Gutted environmental regulations to restore, white supremacists to root out of every corner of government, law enforcement, and the military, racist policies to shit-can, set afire, and ash-dump all over the heads of Donald Trump’s GOP accomplices remaining in Congress. Then there’s that pesky pandemic Trump utterly and desultorily whiffed at, and an economy crippled by, among other venally predictable things, the republican tax scam for their billionaire buddies. We can probably just let the already wobbling scraps of Trump’s farcically stupid Game Of Thrones Ozymandias border wall rust and fall over on their own, but, still, that’s a daunting list. (Maybe it’s time for that Infrastructure Week after all.)
But Stephen Colbert spent his January 19, 2021 in a fine mood, thank you very much, as the Late Show host ripped through a lightheartedly mean-spirited goodbye to “he who shall remain shameless.” Tuesday’s show kicked off with Colbert pointing out the hidden detail that the laser light show illuminating the Ed Sullivan Theater dome that’s been unobtrusively counting down Trump’s 1462 days in office is down to 1, a fact he celebrated with some Joe Biden-esque aviator glasses and a spirited lip-synch to “Hit The Road, Jack.” Look, nobody’s worked harder to wring some clarity (and laughs) out of the last four years than Stephen-fucking-Colbert, so if the guy wants to do a celebratory tap-dance on the Trump administration’s unmourned grave, then who’s to begrudge him?
Sticking with the schadenfreude, Colbert also took some time to mock the outgoing, twice-impeached president’s still-vainglorious demand that people treat him like the giant, glorious god-king of his puny, authoritarian viagra-fantasies, in the form of a big, guns-and-sycophants going-away party at Andrews Air Force Base on Wednesday. As with everything else Trump touches, this final “pity party,” according to Colbert, isn’t looking so hot, as not only have RSVPs been in short, sheepish supply, Trump has reportedly even invited unceremoniously fired former communications director and guy who’s rebranded himself as a Trump-bashing historical footnote, Anthony Scaramucci. Oh, plus, Trump has told those actually willing to still be seen with him a “plus-five” to the skimpy soirée, a ploy comedian Colbert spotted immediately, as did a similarly gleeful Patton Oswalt on Twitter:
And for all of those people trotting out the beyond-tired cliché that comics like Colbert and Oswalt will sure miss that Donald Trump now he’s not around to make fun of every night, first of all—shush, you’re embarrassing yourselves. Second—Colbert showed that the fallout from Trump’s reign of terror will provide plenty of material, thanks very much. Continuing with what he’s taken to calling the Seditious Round-Up Roundup, Colbert named names on some of Trump’s most fervent followers, whose farcical yet violent coup attempt on January 6 continues to ring up bit-worthy comic rewards.
Like Texas realtor Jenna Ryan, who viewed her live-streamed treasonous trespassing as perfect opportunity to plug her house-selling services. (Colbert noted that if broken windows and a house filled with white supremacists is your dream-domicile, then, well, don’t call Jenna Ryan, as she’s likely to be in jail for a while.) Then there’s one Bryan Betancur of Maryland, who helpfully left his parole-mandated ankle monitor in place while he stormed the Capitol. And, to close out the night’s roster of traitorous assholes, Colbert turned the spotlight on Guy Reffitt (also of Texas), who, upon departing for his big insurrectionist cosplay convention, threatened to literally shoot his children should they ever turn him in. Luckily for the Reffitt family, the guy was easily spotted among the throng of Trump-worshipping, thuggish cultists and is now under arrest. Quoting the Texan’s threat that “traitors get shot,” Colbert, again not trying at all to tamp down his delighted contempt at the end of a long four years, said that, no, sometimes, “they just get pepper-sprayed on the steps of the Capitol.” Oh, and mocked for the entire world to jeer at on a popular national late-night show.