Stephen Colbert's reign over late night comedy has persisted for well over a decade, and as a result, it is often hard to remember that his comedic chops extend far beyond a mere desk. He has a long history of legitimate comic acting under his belt, and much of that experience stems from the world of sketches. In fact, Colbert was a master of late 1990s alternative comedy, and an old clip recently resurfaced when Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later's Michael Showalter made an appearance on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. Check out the sketch below to see the weirdness for yourself.
Old habits die hard, and it's pretty clear that the titular host of The Late Show With Stephen Colbert has always possessed the ability to deliver his brand of comedy with a pitch-perfect deadpan expression. Even in that bizarre sketch alongside Michael Showalter, we can see the early DNA of what would essentially become his character from Comedy Central's The Colbert Report. Walking a tightrope that few other comedians have managed to achieve over the years, he recites his lines with a steady and calm demeanor, while remaining completely ignorant of the fact that his words are nonsensical gibberish about a pen. That may seem simple, but it is actually one of the hardest aspects of comedy.
If nothing else, that clip is a firm reminder that Stephen Colbert is more than just a master of dry wit and great interviews. His poker-faced delivery carried him through a broad range of off-kilter projects during the early years of his career, including his role as Chuck Noblet on Strangers with Candy, as well as his tenure on Exit 57 -- alongside fellow comedy greats Paul Dinello and Amy Sedaris. And in the years since Stephen Colbert went on to become a household name for his late night efforts, he has still managed to find time to indulge his weirder side, albeit in the animated medium. The beloved comic has provided his voice for an army of outlandish personalities on shows like The Simpsons, American Dad, BoJack Horseman, and Adult Swim's second season of Rick and Morty.
Then there's Michael Showalter, who remained firmly in the alternative comedy scene while guys like Stephen Colbert entered the mainstream. There's currently no word as to whether or not Colbert will join Showalter in a cameo appearance on the upcoming season of Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later, but considering their chemistry in this weird 1990s sketch, we hope that he pulls a Jon Hamm and shows up for a few scenes. After all, with Bradley Cooper not returning, there's room in the cast.
Make sure to catch Michael Showalter's latest foray into Netflix when Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later debuts later this summer on August 4. If you are on the lookout for more information related to the rest of this season's major small screen premieres, check out our handy summer TV premiere guide and fill out your TV viewing calendars accordingly!
Originally from Connecticut, Conner grew up in San Diego and graduated from Chapman University in 2014. He now lives in Los Angeles working in and around the entertainment industry and can mostly be found binging horror movies and chugging coffee.
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