Is my new hero. See ToastyKen's blogpost
on his White House Correspondents' dinner performance, complete with YouTube linkage.
Colbert is not my hero for his political commentary, though I appreciate that unlike most political humorists he kept the hammer almost entirely on the true issues of substance--Why did we invade Iraq? What are we doing about Global Warming? What's up with the degradation of Civil liberties?. What I am in utter awe of his how he managed to hold his performance and character mere feet away from the man he was making ruthless fun of. Who just happens to be the most powerful person in the world. He didn't just stand a few feet away from him. He kept turning to the president and looking at him and addressing him directly while he delivered his sarcastic lines. He didn't once break it up with self-deprecatory let's-be-friends fluff, or lose the focus of his jabbing. I cannot even conceive of how much theatrical nerve that must take. Verily Colbert hath steel wires lining his gut.
I wonder if history's judgement will be that had Colbert emerged at a different time, he would have been a great thespian in the traditions of Olivier and Burton, or a great live-comic like, like the youthful Robin Williams. Perhaps the necessity of political humor was the only stage on which he could have emerged, but such straight up chutzpah indicates a purer talent than I think we have recognized before today.