Late Night Lately: John Oliver's Song-and-Dance, Disney Mashup, Impeachment Jokes

8:00 AM 11/16/2019

by THR Staff

The Hollywood Reporter's Late Night Lately rounds up the best sketches and guests with a look at what's to come next week.

Courtesy of HBO, NBC and Comedy Central

The Hollywood Reporter's Late Night Lately is a one-stop shop for all of the most memorable moments of late-night TV, coming to you each Saturday morning to ease you into your weekend.

So pour your coffee, set your DVR for the week and sit back. Below are a few of the week's best, funniest and strangest late-night moments that you can't afford to miss.

This week: John Oliver, along with an entire team of trained dancers, took on coal tycoon Bob Murray via an elaborate song-and-dance routine, celebrating the news that his lawsuit filed against Oliver's HBO show was dismissed by a West Virginia judge. Kristen Bell joined Jimmy Fallon to perform a mashup of Disney songs in honor of Frozen 2. And, of course, many hosts weighed in on this week's impeachment hearings, which Trevor Noah described as "unexplainable, illogical, crazy."

— Compiled by Jennifer Konerman

  • John Oliver Takes Aim at Coal Tycoon Bob Murray With Musical Number

    Lloyd Bishop/HBO

    John Oliver took on lawsuits (one in particular) during Sunday's Last Week Tonight.

    The topic of lawsuits was on Oliver's mind because the suit that coal tycoon Bob Murray had filed against his show had been dropped. Murray had sued Last Week Tonight over a segment in which Oliver joked that he looked like "a geriatric Dr. Evil." The show also arranged "for a staff member to dress up in a squirrel costume and deliver the message, 'Eat shit, Bob,'" a reference from a Murray employee. 

    "Murray's lawsuit against us asked for damages because he claimed that nothing has ever stressed him more than our 'vicious and awful attack,'" Oliver continued. "Which is an odd thing to say, given that, as I just mentioned, he oversaw a company whose mine collapse in Utah resulted in the deaths of nine people."

    The discussion of this lawsuit led to Oliver's team uncovering multiple sexual misconduct allegations against Murray, suits that have gone uncovered in the media. The coal tycoon denied the claims, and Oliver pointed out that by bringing to light the allegations in the episode, the show risked being sued again. "Here we go again," said Oliver. "It is yet another Bob Murray attempt to bully people into silence, and he has been doing this for decades. I will stand behind our first piece and I will stand behind this one."

    Oliver concluded the segment with a musical number, in which the host recapped the case through song. "Even though he'll threaten legal Armageddon, we have just one tiny thing to say," he sang. "Bob Murray can go fuck himself today."

    The musical number concluded with John and the "Suck My Ball, Bob" dancers taking over Times Square as they enthusiastically sang, "Eat shit, Bob!"

  • Kristen Bell and Jimmy Fallon Perform Disney Song Mashup

    Andrew Lipovsky/NBC

    Kristen Bell and Jimmy Fallon performed a mashup of Disney songs during Tuesday's Tonight Show.

    Fallon opened the segment by performing "When You Wish Upon a Star" from Pinocchio

    They quickly transitioned into singing "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" before "The Bare Necessities" from The Jungle Book, The Little Mermaid's "Under the Sea" and "A Whole New World" from Aladdin

    Both Bell and Fallon later sang in alto tones to take on "Beauty and the Beast." Fallon interrupted Bell's performance to sing parts of Frozen's "Do You Want to Build a Snowman?" and together they segued into the sequel's "Into the Unknown."

  • Hosts Break Down "Unexplainable, Illogical, Crazy" Trump Impeachment Hearings

    Getty Images

    Late night hosts weighed in on the proceedings after the first day of the House of Representatives' public impeachment hearing to examine President Trump's actions. 

    Stephen Colbert declared in his opening monologue titled "Don and the Giant Impeach": "It's finally here, it's finally arrived: the first day of live impeachment hearings. It's what we've been praying for since the beginning of the Trump presidency: the end of the Trump presidency." He continued to say that today's live testimony was as dramatic as it was historic, joking, "It was the biggest ratings hit for C-SPAN 3 since Drunk History, starring Brett Kavanaugh."

    Trevor Noah's focus was on diplomat George Kent. "For the first day of the public hearings, the Democrats chose to call two witnesses: Bill Taylor, the acting ambassador to Ukraine, and George Kent, senior official and townsperson in a 1950s musical," said the host.

    Noah zeroed in on one moment. "Hmm. 'Unexplainable, illogical, crazy.' That's the description Bill Taylor gave of Trump's actions. It's also the title of Trump's new memoir."

    Meyers devoted a "Closer Look" segment to the impeachment hearing, noting that this is the fourth time Congress has launched impeachment proceedings against a sitting president. "And that is not the club you want to be in," he said. "There are two presidents who have actually gotten impeached [Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton] and the third, Richard Nixon, who was so desperate to avoid it, he quit first. Remember the famous shot of Nixon getting on the helicopter? If that had been Trump, the Secret Service would have to tie him to the helicopter by his leg and air-lift him out."

    Touching on the evidence laid out by Rep. Adam Schiff, the Democratic chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Meyers highlighted a crucial point: "The facts in the present inquiry are not seriously contested." Meyers said, "They've basically admitted to all of it," adding that in addition to the transcript of the July 25 call at the center of the inquiry where Trump tells Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, "I would like you to do us a favor …" and that Giuliani has done multiple TV interviews where he "showed off his communications" with Trump officials on his phone and iPad. "You know you're a bad criminal when you keep the evidence against you on multiple devices," Meyers quipped.

    Jimmy Kimmel gave his viewers a recap of the impeachment hearing, noting that California Republican Rep. Devin Nunes "was much more interested in defending the president than in getting the facts." While showing clips from Nunes' statement, the show added a MAGA cowboy hat to Nunes' head.

    "This is a stressful day for the president. The Popeyes near the White House, they had to waive their two chicken sandwiches per person limit today for him," joked Kimmel.

    The host added that Trump called the hearing a "joke" and a "hoax" and also claimed he didn't watch it. "A White House spokesperson said the president was too busy working. He might as well have said he was at a Zumba class," said Kimmel.

    Jimmy Fallon busted out his Trump impression to host Impeachment After Dark Live. "I thought this whole impeachment thing would go away by now, like a common cold or a second wife," Fallon said as Trump. "And worse, now you can't even get the truth from shows like Fox and Frenemies."

    Tony Hale also made a cameo in the sketch as his character Gary from Veep. After Fallon asked his assistant for water, Gary handed him a bottle of Diet Coke.

    Conan O'Brien joked that the Conan team didn't write any comedy that day because they were so invested in the hearing. The host said that Trump claimed to be cleaning out his desk instead of watching the hearing. "He has just a bunch of Burger King Crowns that came with the meal," O'Brien joked about what was in Trump's desk.

    O'Brien added that some people believe that the "damning" new evidence against Trump could end his presidency, though he cut himself off and said, "Wait, I'm sorry. This joke is from two years ago."

    "That joke is also from one year ago. And six months ago," he said. "We've used that cue card 15 times."

    Samantha Bee also touched on the impeachment hearing during Full Frontal. "I can't wait to finally eat a piece of the impeachment cake I baked three years ago," she said. After Bee shared clips of Trump stating that he didn't watch the hearings, she mocked, "Oh, you were having hearings? I didn't even see them. I just watched them and heard them and anyways, whatever, you're too ugly to be on TV."

    James Corden admitted he found the hearing "a little confusing at times." Many people, including Eric Trump, took to Twitter to call the hearings boring. "He does know that 'boring' is not the same as 'wrong,' right?" asked Corden. "When there is a murder trial and an expert witness is presenting detailed evidence, the judge doesn't go, 'Boring!'"

  • Sarah Jessica Parker Quizzes Kristin Davis on 'Sex and the City' Knowledge

    Charles Sykes/Bravo

    Kristin Davis put her Sex and the City memory to the test when she stopped by Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen on Monday.

    Sarah Jessica Parker called in to ask Davis "a real brain teaser" question. "I'm gonna focus it on food because that's basically what we talked about all the time," Parker said. "Get in your little time machine. I want you to go back to Morocco to the set of when we were doing Sex and the City 2 and I'm gonna ask you what did we eat every day at 11:30?"

    Davis enthusiastically answered that they would eat "the tomato sandwiches from the crafty, but we had to walk a really long way."

    Parker said she was correct and added that she also ate "a particular delicious ham baguette every day."

    The actress also revealed if she thought that Carrie should have ended up with Chris Noth's Mr. Big or John Corbett's Aidan. "I love John Corbett so, so much, but I do think she was meant for Big," she answered.

  • Conan O'Brien, Seth Meyers, Jimmy Fallon Remember NBC Executive Rick Ludwin

    Courtesy of NBC Photo

    Conan O'Brien, Seth Meyers and Jimmy Fallon paid tribute to former NBC Late Night executive Rick Ludwin on their shows Monday night. Ludwin ran specials and late night programming at NBC for over 30 years. He died Sunday after a brief illness. He was 71. His time at NBC spanned the early days of Saturday Night Live and iterations of The Tonight Show hosted by Johnny Carson and Jay Leno. He also worked on the Late Night franchise with David Letterman, O'Brien and Fallon. Additionally, he commissioned and famously backed Seinfeld while other NBC executives speculated about whether the "show about nothing" could actually be a contender.

    O'Brien remembered Ludwin by sharing that the executive was supportive of the host when he took over Late Night in 1993. "I had a very rocky start. Pretty much everyone at the network thought that I should be canceled, but one executive disagreed and that was Rick Ludwin," he said. "Rick argued passionately for me with the network and he helped keep me on the air during those first two years."

    The host added that Ludwin stuck by him during "the Tonight Show fiasco." "After I ended up here at TBS, Rick was a regular visitor and he remained a loyal friend to our show. Always very encouraging and full of great stories," he said.

    Meyers also spoke about Ludwin on Late Night. "I first met him when I joined SNL in 2001. By then, he was already a legend," said Meyers. "He often came by and gave thoughtfully worded notes that were complimentary, but firm and fair."

    Meyers said that it was fitting that the last time he saw Ludwin was at Seinfeld's birthday party. "It's also fitting to be talking about Rick on Late Night because there was nothing Rick liked more than talking about late night," he said. "He was so giving and warm with his history and his stories and his time."

    "At his core, the best thing about Rick was how kind he was. He was kind in a way that was really important to the people he interacted with," Meyers concluded. "He was kind in a way that was very unique for this world that we live in — in television and the entertainment industry. And he will just be deeply, deeply missed. I was so lucky to know him."

    Over on The Tonight Show, Fallon remembered Ludwin and honored his work at NBC, at SNL before he took over for O'Brien on Late Night in 2009. "I'll never forget how generous he was with his time and advice, always saying the parts of the show that he liked and wanted to see more of," Fallon shared. "He was just so encouraging."

    "Rick was also a walking encyclopedia of Late Night. He knew everything there was to know about TV and we all loved and respected him for it," he continued. 

  • Late Night Lineup: Nov. 17-23

    Monday, Nov. 18
    Jimmy Kimmel Live!: Martin Scorsese, the filmmaker behind The Irishman and the recent discussions about superhero film in cinema, visits Kimmel's show, a popular stop for Marvel actors.

    The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon: Fellow late night host Seth Meyers stops by, this time to talk about his standup special.

    Tuesday, Nov. 19
    Late Night With Seth Meyers: The latest Batman, Robert Pattinson, joins activist and former VP Al Gore. 

    Wednesday, Nov. 20
    Daily Show, The Late Show: Noah's and Colbert's shows will be live following the night's Democratic debate on MSNBC.