“Tonight, we binge ourselves,” declared this year’s Emmy host Stephen Colbert. Delivering a solid start to the awards show, Colbert began the night with a pre-taped portion of song, dance, and swipes at the White House and HBO.
While an opening number is typical of awards nights, mainstream audiences might not be aware of the comedian’s singing skills and the performer deftly sang his way through the montage that highlighted all the shows nominated the year before taking the stage flanked by cloaked women in the style of The Handmaid’s Tale. The group quickly disrobed as they created a kickline. It set the tone for the night, honoring television while being well aware of events happening in the rest of the country.
As he wound down into his monologue, Colbert took a shaky moment of jokes seemingly only for the people in the room before finding his groove as he turned to the President. While his earlier song made quick snipes at the White House, the monologue doubled down with jabs at the President’s tweets about the Emmys, how Trump’s losing the Emmy may be why he wanted to run for president, and best of all, the size the awards show’s viewing audience. Mocking the President’s reaction to the media coverage of his inauguration, Colbert rolled out former Press Secretary Sean Spicer to say it was the larger viewing audience in Emmy history. The bit sent an uproar through the room, with Saturday Night Live guest star Melissa McCarthy, who lampooned Spicer on the late-night series, stunned as she watched Spicer stand one stage.
In year’s past, awards show’s hosts have struggled to be both biting in their jokes as well as accessible to audiences across the country. Colbert doesn’t seem to be worried about that though, focusing on the audience that has made him the most watched late-night show since the 2016 election.
You can watch the complete Emmys monologue below!
Emily J | Managing Editor