Late-Night Lately: Colbert's Russia Week, Conan at Comic-Con, Hosts React to O.J. Simpson News

8:00 AM 7/22/2017

by THR Staff

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

Courtesy of CBS; Courtesy of TBS; Courtesy of 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 fill up 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 you can't afford to miss.

— Compiled by Jennifer Konerman

  • Stephen Colbert Presents: "Russia Week"


    Stephen Colbert kicked off day one of "Russia Week" on The Late Show with some jabs at Donald Trump Jr.'s Russian ties and new footage of Colbert's recent trip to the country.

    "I just want to get out ahead of the story here — I recently met with a lot of Russians. I can't remember why — maybe because I was in Russia. Some of them work for the government," Colbert teased. "I didn't think you'd find out; the whole week was supposed to be a secret. But someone leaked it to CBS' marketing department," he said, then mouthed, "I did." 

    On Monday's episode, he aired clips from his guest appearance on Russian talk show Evening Urgant and took to the streets of St. Petersburg to mingle with passersby.

    Next, Colbert spent time in Russia with oligarch Mikhail Prokhorov, who owns the Brooklyn Nets. "This is how things work over in Russia," said Colbert, introducing his segment, "Over there, the political system is controlled by wealthy elites who buy influence and pull strings of the government. Whereas in America, we speak English."

    Colbert spent the day learning how to be a Russian oligarch and quizzing Prokhorov on different "oligarch" luxury items he might own. For example, the Nets owner has a jet, but he didn't know where it was at the moment. 

    But the big moment for Colbert was when he got to tour the Moscow hotel suite referred to in the now-infamous Russia dossier released by BuzzFeed in January. First, he posted a video of a Cribs-style tour of the suite, pointing out the highlights like a grand piano, a crystal vase with nude images on it "depicting, I believe, the allegations in the dossier."

    Next, Colbert launched his full investigation of the "pee pee tape" on Thursday night's show, but "for some reason, asking random people for the pee pee tape wasn't working," according to Colbert while in Russia, so he simply checked in to the hotel and saw the infamous hotel room himself. "It's soaked in history, it just washes over you," he joked. "It's not even like it's in the past, you're in history."  

  • 'Conan' at Comic-Con


    Conan O'Brien kicked off his week of shows at Comic-Con with the casts of Bright and The CW's Supernatural, complete with standing ovations and a keg stand. The show started with a Wonder Woman-themed opening sequence that saw O'Brien and Andy Richter road trip down to Comic-Con, and the host (after being kicked out of the car) flew and crash-landed on Themyscira. The warrior women were unimpressed.

    Bright's Will Smith, Joel Edgerton, Noomi Rapace, Lucy Fry and director David Ayer joined him in San Diego first to discuss their upcoming supernatural cop film. Smith described the movie as having "the energy of Training Day meets Lord of the Rings."

    Supernatural's Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles stopped by next to talk about their long-running sci-fi show, including The CW show crossovers and how many times each of their characters have died on air ... before doing a celebratory keg stand in honor of Padalecki's birthday.  

    On Thursday, the cast of Kingsman: The Golden Circle joined the host to get to the bottom of the big mystery of the sequel: How is Colin Firth back? Firth, Taron Egerton, Halle Berry, Channing Tatum, Jeff Bridges and Pedro Pascal also shared their onscreen nicknames based on drinks, and dubbed O'Brien "Aperol Spritz," a nod to his orange-colored hair.

  • Hosts React to O.J. Simpson Parole News

    Screengrab/Jimmy Kimmel Live

    O.J. Simpson was granted parole Thursday, after serving almost nine years in prison for armed robbery and assault with a weapon, and late-night TV had a lot to say about it.

    On ABC, Jimmy Kimmel mocked the local reporters who repeatedly announced that "the Juice is loose," before explaining who Simpson was to his younger viewers. "O.J. Simpson — for those of you too young to remember, is the second-most embarrassing person associated with the Kardashian family, right after Scott Disick," said Kimmel.

    "Technically, the Juice is not on the loose yet — he could be released by Oct. 1 — on which date, he will be picked up at the Lovelock Correctional Facility via helicopter and flown directly to the set of Dancing With The Stars, or Bachelor in Paradise. Whichever show is currently in production."

    On Comedy Central's Daily Show, Trevor Noah teased Simpson for saying he has mostly led a "conflict-free life." Impersonating the former football player Noah said, "Yeah, I had a lot of conflict, and I mostly got off free."

    Noah continued: "O.J. and his people reminded us that he’s been a model citizen in prison. He petitioned for books for the library; he coached a softball team; he never got in trouble. To me, that’s kind of a reason to keep him in prison — it’s the only place he’s not committing crimes.”

    "O.J. got away, baby," said Stephen Colbert on CBS' Late Show. "Finally, he has the opportunity to find the real killer. Step one: buy a mirror. It'll help." Colbert also showed a photo of Simpson and Donald Trump from 1993 and joked the photo was taken "when it was still a coin toss which one of those guys would be president and which one would end up in jail."

    On NBC's Tonight Show, Jimmy Fallon told his audience to be careful calling an Uber now, to make sure it's not a white Ford Bronco. "A lot of people didn’t know how to feel about the news. On one hand, O.J. is a convicted felon. But, on the other hand, he managed to keep Trump off TV for a whole afternoon," said Fallon, joking that it's kind of like community service.

  • Keegan-Michael Key Brings Back Luther, Obama's Anger Translator

    Courtesy of CBS

    Stephen Colbert took advantage of having Keegan-Michael Key on The Late Show to ask the Key & Peele alum to bring back his Luther character, former President Barack Obama's anger translator.

    Colbert pointed out that since President Donald Trump has taken office, Obama has only said "a couple of sentences" about policy, but he asked Key to revive Luther to translate them. This was after the two talked about mocking Trump and Key said it's "hard [to find material] when a person is the most ideal comic version of themselves."

    After Colbert read a comment from Obama about healthcare, Key widened his eyes and shouted. "C'mon people. Trumpcare? More like Trump don't care."

    "Y'all gonna kill some people," said Key's Luther, accusing Republicans of hiding in a dungeon making an evil concoction. "I would say you people make me sick, but I can't afford that because I wouldn't have no damn insurance."

  • Samantha Bee Tears Down Trump's Election Integrity Commission

    Courtesy of Full Frontal with Samantha Bee/TBS

    On Wednesday's Full Frontal, Samantha Bee criticized President Trump's Commission on Election Integrity, saying the men who are running it are all long-term fans of voter suppression.

    She played clips of Trump's unsubstantiated claims that there was widespread voter fraud in the 2016 election, in which Trump won the Electoral College vote but lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton. "Those mythical 3 million illegal voters are the president's obsession, his white whale," said Bee. "Although if the whale were white, Trump would be a lot less concerned about it voting."

    Vice President Mike Pence and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach are heading up the commission, so Bee went through Kobach's history as well as discussing commission members Hans von Spakovsky and J. Christian Adams. "How the fuck do you go to Harvard, Yale and Oxford and come out a birther?" asked Bee, after quoting Kobach's questioning of Obama's citizenship. She spoke about voter suppression and how dangerous the commission could be if the result is American citizens being purged from the voter rolls.

  • Late-Night Lineup: July 23-29

    Monday, July 24
    The Late Late Show With James Corden: Mark Hamill stops by the CBS show, just after Comic-Con but months ahead of Star Wars: The Last Jedi is set to hit theaters. 

    Wednesday, July 26
    The Late Show With Stephen Colbert: Michael Moore sits down with the host just after his "Russia Week" to promote Michael Moore in TrumpLand and talk politics. 

    The Late Late Show With James Corden: Continuing a political week in late night, Al Gore sits down with Corden (along with Laura Linney) as his Inconvenient Sequel is about to debut. 

    Thursday, July 27
    The Late Show With Stephen Colbert: Worlds collide once again as Full Frontal's Samantha Bee reminisces about the old days at The Daily Show with Colbert. 

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