Stephen Colbert doesn’t take no for an answer.
CBS’ The Late Show with Stephen Colbert has received a surge in popularity following Colbert returning to his roots as his conservative-parody Stephen Colbert character from his Comedy Central show Colbert Report. The late night host filmed a new segment of The Word last week, in character, and while it was entertaining, it did not please his former bosses.
The Hollywood Reporter confirmed Viacom, the parent company of Comedy Central, has protested the use of the character on CBS, claiming its the companies intellectual property. Colbert confirmed the news on Wednesday’s episode of The Late Show.
“This is true, immediately after that show, CBS’ top lawyer was contacted by the top lawyer for another company to say that the character Stephen Colbert is their intellectual property,”
As big of a bummer as it would be to regain Colbert’s iconic character just to lose him in the middle of election season, the real Colbert concocted a scheme to create a loophole to return…sort of. He premiered a new segment titled “The Werd” featuring his cousin “Stephen Colbert.” Colbert said the new character is “totally different,” and proceeded to do a slightly revamped version of his popular segment.
It’s interesting to see Viacom attempt to take control over a character named after the host himself, but if they believe the character and segment are their property, there’s not much to be done – other than flip things around to make it legal. It’s wonderful to see Colbert return to the segment, even if it’s his technically his twin.