On Thursday’s Late Show, Stephen Colbert pushed the boundaries of censorship with a segment on nude art, and what is allowed to be shown on television. Recently, Modigliani’s “Nu CouchÃ©” sold at auction for $170 million, but was not allowed to show the painting on television without blurring out what Stephen calls “both hootie and the blowfish.” So, Stephen takes the chance to question exactly what he is allowed to show on CBS.
Stephen can show a Picasso that features “eight and a half boobs,” but he can’t show the Modigliani, which raises the question, “Where do we draw the line between art and pornography? And what if that line looks like a butt crack?” He goes on to explain that CBS censors allowed him to show raw, uncensored Georgia O’Keefe, but he can only show Michelangelo’s David for two seconds. “I just hope to God no one ever invents a way to pause television,” says Stephen, before breaking out a drawing pad to further his point. Watch the video to see the full, censored version.