During last night’s episode of The Colbert Report, Stephen Colbert announced the official end date of the show as December 19th. It has been known for a while that Colbert would be leaving to take over for David Letterman on Late Show, but up until this point there has not been a solid end date for the political satire show that has been running for over nine years.
In the short bit announcing the show’s finale date, Colbert also ceremoniously revealed that his extreme right-wing pundit persona – that he has had dating all the way back to his time on The Daily Show – would be coming to and end as well. It was heavily speculated that he would not be bringing the personality along when he made the jump to a more standard late-night talk show format, and he pretty blatantly spelled it out in case anyone was still not sure.
“Stephen Colbert, the guy you’ve seen here every night for nine years will be gone,” he said following a cut of the grim reaper hinting that his next destination would be hell by pointing into a fireplace.
While he still hasn’t formally mentioned on the The Colbert Report that he will be taking over Late Show (and his persona probably never will acknowledge it), he has joked about and danced around it in typical Colbert fashion a couple times. Particularly when it was announced that he would be taking Letterman’s place back in April, Stephen hinted at it on the show by musing “I do not envy whoever they decide to put in that chair,” during a tribute to David Letterman. Which of course resulted in massive applause from the fans in the crowd who were in on the joke.
The 11:30 time slot of The Colbert Report will be replaced by another former Daily Show coorespondant, Larry Wilmore, and his show The Minority Report. Colbert himself will take over as host of Late Show sometime next year.