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Nick Offerman judges Stephen Colbert's wood on The Late Show

Stephen Colbert, Nick Offerman
Screenshot: The Late Show With Stephen Colbert

Whenever actor, woodworker, and all-around burly woke dude Nick Offerman appears on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, Colbert redecorates the set with some of the handcrafted wooden gifts Offerman’s given over the years. Apart from a set of snazzy wooden coasters for the traditional late-night beverages, Offerman lovingly ran his hand over the Offerman-made rustic end table Colbert brought out, and pronounced the Late Show staff’s care of his creation adequate to its needs. While the actual Offerman is prone to more goofiness and giggling, it’s just impossible to hear him talk woodcraft without imagining him as Ron Swanson. For example, when Colbert brought out the prefab-looking wooden bench his staff had built for the Ed Sullivan Theater’s roof garden, Offerman’s generous appraisal of their basic woodworking competence was yet marbled with a decidedly Swanson-esque turn of lightly disapproving phrase. (Try to hear Offerman describe the bench’s materials as “a collection of studs from the home building store” without picturing Ron—you can’t do it.)

Offerman, on the show technically to promote his new father-daughter family band indie Hearts Beat Loud, mostly chatted with Colbert about wood, the enduring love he and wife Megan Mullally hold for Survivor, and more wood. Even the Survivor talk saw Offerman speculating how long it would take him to craft a working water wheel should he ever be a contestant. (About a day and a half.) And he and Colbert both agreed that their favorite historical carpenter of all time is, naturally, Harrison Ford. “Harrison Ford, Jesus, and myself are the three big showbiz carpenters,” Offerman bragged. Still, Offerman was full of praise for Hearts Beat Loud, whose humanistic family drama he referred to as “a beautiful, loving dose of medicine” for those walking around in a continual bummed out and anxious state “because of the uproar our nation is in, morally.” (Colbert, especially, seemed to respond to that.) Offerman was also full of enthusiastic praise for his young costar Kiersey Clemons, whose combined acting and singing talents he humorously predicted will knock off various articles of audience members’ clothing.


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Dennis Perkins

Contributor, The A.V. Club. Danny Peary's Cult Movies books are mostly to blame.