Conan Responds to Colbert’s Controversial Trump/Putin Joke

Nick Paschal
Supervising Producer, Yahoo Entertainment

Conan O’Brien showed some support for fellow late night host Stephen Colbert while on another late night show, Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen. Conan was asked by an audience member if he thought Colbert’s joke about President Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin went too far. O’Brien started off by saying, “First of all, I make it a policy not to judge other late night hosts, and I love Stephen, and he’s an incredibly talented guy, and I know how hard that gig is.”

Colbert’s Controversy

Colbert got in some hot water a few weeks ago for making a controversial joke on The Late Show about Trump, Putin, and oral sex. The FCC this week announced that it would not take any action against Colbert, and Conan attempted to explain what he thought was going through his late night buddy’s mind.

Conan said, “It’s a volume business, we’re all making judgments left and right. I think he himself said, ‘Maybe I would have changed the wording slightly.’ I think we’re getting into a world now where it’s hard to know what’s too far, because everything seems like we’re going over the edge at times.” He continued, saying, “In a way, Stephen’s humor in that moment is, and I’m not excusing it or making apologies for it or anything, I’m saying in that moment, I think he was reflecting some of the madness that all of us are feeling at times.”

Conan Kills Kimmel, Ignores Leno

Colbert wasn’t the only late night host Conan talked about. In a game of Shag, Marry, Kill, Conan said he would shag James Corden, marry Jimmy Fallon and kill Jimmy Kimmel. He joked, “He stole my beard! I had a beard once, he took my beard, so I’m going to kill that guy.” But one late night personality whom Conan did not want to talk about was former Tonight Show host Jay Leno. When Andy asked O’Brien what he would say to Jay Leno if he sat next to him on a plane, Conan joked that he wouldn’t even notice him. Conan said he would be too busy watching a movie: “I’m watching The Goonies! And I’m so happy, I don’t see who’s next to me! And I miss that glorious chance to talk to that wonderful fellow.”

Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen airs Sunday to Thursday at 11 p.m. on Bravo. 

Check out the controversial joke, and Colbert’s response to the backlash: 

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