March 26, 2012

TV Star Spotlight: Stephen Colbert

Stephen Colbert is best known as the host of the late night political comedy talk show The Colbert Report.  But the host of the show is not Stephen Colbert, it is actually Stephen Colbert.  You see, Stephen Colbert is a character played by an actor and comedian named Stephen Colbert.  While the two have much in common (such as their names), they actually quite different.  For one, the real Stephen Colbert is an actor who has played many different characters on many different TV shows,  before landing the role of playing the host of The Colbert Report.  So let's take a look back at some of the lesser known Stephen Colbert TV roles before The Report.

In 1995, Colbert starred in his first major TV show, the short-lived Comedy Central sketch comedy show Exit 57.  The show co-starred comedians Amy Sedaris, Paul Dino, and Mitch Rouse.

In 1996 Colbert starred on another short-lived sketch comedy show The Dana Carvey Show.  The show ran on ABC for just one season before it was canceled, and starred Dana Carvey fresh off his run on Saturday Night Live.  Steve Carell also starred on the show, often being teamed up with Colbert in sketches.   In this sketch, Colbert and Carell star as waiters who are nauseated by food.

From 1999-2000, Colbert re-teamed with Amy Sedaris to star in Strangers with Candy, a parody of after school specials.  Amy Sedaris starred as a student, and Stephen played her teacher.

Colbert also starred on the Adult Swim animated series Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law.   The show starred Birdman, the character from the old Hannah Barbara carton Birdman and the Galaxy Trio, as a retired superhero and now modern day lawyer defending various other Hannah Barbara cartoon characters in court.  Colbert voiced two main characters - the first was Harvey's eye-patched boss Phil Ken Sebben, and the other was Reducto, a paranoid opposing lawyer who was obsessed with shrinking people with his shrink gun.

Colbert also provided his voice to "The Ambiguously Gay Duo", the popular Satuday Night Live cartoon which started out on The Dana Carvey Show.  Colbert played Ace opposite Steve Carell's Gary.

Stephen Colbert also of course starred on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart as one of the original correspondents (once again with Steve Carell).  Here is Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell's popular segment "Even Stevphen", where the two debate religion.

Which brings us to The Colbert Report.  The Report is a spin off of The Daily Show, which gave Stephen Colbert's popular on-screen character his own show.  Here is Stephen Colbert as Report host Stephen Colbert, in a recent episode of The Colbert Report where he unveils his new avant-garde Super PAC ad:

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Herman Cain's Avant-Garde PAC Ad
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The Colbert Report returns from a short hiatus tonight at 11:30 on Comedy Central!

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