It’s been eight months since former CBS chairman and CEO Les Moonves resigned amidst numerous allegations of sexual misconduct, and the scandal did not go unmentioned when Stephen Colbert hosted the network’s upfront presentation in New York City’s Carnegie Hall on Wednesday.
Introducing the new CBS fall lineup to advertisers, the host of Global’s “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” kicked off the presentation with a hilarious monologue that took a shot at his one-time boss.
Taking to the stage, reports Vanity Fair, Colbert told the crowd that CBS brass had provided him with a lengthy document detailing the network’s success this year. “I didn’t have time to get through all of it,” he said, “so I just read Bill Barr’s four-page summary. ‘Les Moonves: totally exonerated.’ I did not see that coming!”
As The Wrap reports, Colbert then joked about the network’s longtime winning streak as the #1 broadcast network. “We’re #1 baby! Woo! We won TV! We can stop now,” he quipped before pausing to add, “I’m being told we cannot stop now, I’m sorry.”
Continued Colbert: “We’ve been #1 for 11 years. Do you know what that means? That means that there are a lot of old people who don’t realize that the TV in the basement has been on for over a decade. No one tell them, please.”
He also joked about the network planning to launch yet another sitcom from the creator of “The Big Bang Theory”.
“Why is CBS #1? Because we’re always innovating. Next season we’ll have shows from young up-and-comers like Chuck Lorre,” he joked. “When it comes to finding new voices, CBS will take a chance on anyone who is already on CBS.”
As he does on “The Late Show”, Colbert also took a veiled shot at the Trump administration. “CBS has some of the highest-rated crime dramas on TV,” he pointed out. “For some reason these days, Americans really want to watch people who obviously committed crimes go to jail for them.”
He also joked about the network’s greying demographics while taking a shot at the president. “We’re currently tied first among adults 25-54. Of course, Fox News is still winning toddlers aged 72,” he joked.
“Speaking of the demo, two days ago I turned 55. And I just want to thank you for all the years you gave a damn about what I watched… Now I’m off to — well, again, you don’t care,” he told the advertisers before pointing to the success of his show.
“‘The Late Show’ isn’t just #1 in late night, we’re also #1 in the 18-49 demo. Tonight we have the Korean supergroup BTS on the show. That brings in the 18-year-olds and the 49-year-olds desperate for something to talk about with their 18-year-olds,” he added.