Late Night Talks: Pope, Equinox, and Happy Birthday

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Still from NBC

The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

Stephen discusses the papal visit to Washington, making cracks about Cuba and the opposition to Pope Francis’ modernization of the vatican. The comedic highlight is Stephen’s imitation of the pontiff’s accent. The satirical highlight is the mockery of il Papa’s critics’ reactions, especially Rep. Paul Gosar’s insubstantial decision to boycott the Pope’s speech.

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Jimmy Kimmel Live

You can always assume Jimmy’s “Lie Witness News” can be seen as a satire against the American education system. Here his street team asks passersby, “Are You Prepared for a 5.5-Magnitude Equinox?”

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CONAN

Conan jokes about Jews in America spending Yom Kippur watching the Pope, congratulates Oprah for presumably being the first American saint canonized by the Pope, and laughs at himself after suggesting the Vatican’s national anthem is Katy Perry’s “Roar”. Conan gets satirical with the odd news that the Pope will attend an event hosted by Mark Walhberg, who is surely “wicked pumped to meet the f—ing Pope.”

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The Late Show with Seth Meyers

Seth fires off a stream of jokes in his typical Weekend Update fashion. He talks about the Pope wearing white after labor day, Biden sneaking up on Hillary in the polls (and possible elsewhere), and Starbucks’ Toasted Graham Latte, which tastes like graham crackers and sweet cream, “just like the rascal it was named after,” Lindsey Graham. He verges on satire discussing news that kids fashion doll company Lammily is releasing a “period party” doll that comes with a package on menstruation, noting, firstly, “never refer to it as a party,” but more importantly, “do not try to make her talk by pulling on the string.”

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The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon

Fallon treats the Pope’s visit as lighter fare, commenting on the miracle of his plane’s early arrival, and the humor of the Pope’s spokesman pointing out how small the Pope’s car is. There is also a funny cut of the Pope “singing” the newly royalty-free “Happy Birthday” to President Obama. A bit of satire comes out with a crack about Chris Christie’s hypocritical remarks on a National Guard general’s weight, and an observation that the Dalai Lama’s comments on women show he may have been reincarnated as Donald Trump.

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The Late Late Show with James Corden

Parody is a great tool for satirical subversion, and while Corden isn’t necessarily trying to subvert anything here, his nice little theatrical parody playfully satirizes established tropes of the theatre, particularly the narcissistic director/producer/star with an ego too big for the venue, too proud of himself to see the faults of his own production. In this case, the production is “Phantom of the Opera”, and the venue is the corner of Beverly Blvd. and Genesee Ave.

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