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Stephen Colbert debuts his new Trump feature, Sixteen Scandals

Screenshot: The Late Show With Stephen Colbert

For a nightly political comic like Stephen Colbert, the challenge is always going to be deciding how to approach the enormous and burgeoning shit mountain that is Donald Trump’s administration. On Friday’s Late Show, it appears that Colbert has decided on a “driving in traffic” approach going forward by just picking the one single, egregiously polluting outrage in front of him at the time, debuting what he calls a new, “soon-to-be-ongoing feature” based on the 16 (known) active criminal investigations against the Donald. Having Jon Batiste’s band, a busy in-house graphics department, and a lovely falsetto himself, Colbert introduced the segment with a Molly-Ringwald-as-Lady-Justice mockup, and a slightly rearranged classic song for the monologue bit, Sixteen Scandals. You have to make it fun.

Promising to highlight a different, ongoing investigation into the various nefarious nooks and crannies of Trump’s governmental and business schemes, Colbert started off with the recent news emerging about Trump’s sketchy employment practices at his various, gold-toileted properties. There, Trump is accused in court documents of not only hiring undocumented immigrants (the irony is most definitely lost on Trump voters), but taking advantage of the innately insecure status of his vulnerable workers to force them to work extra time polishing his gilded bidets and so forth, for free. Colbert, calling undocumented immigrants Don the baby-cager’s mortal enemy, called out Trump for unpresidential behavior, comparing it to FDR hiring Hitler to mow his lawn. Colbert, nothing if not fair, did admit that there was something presidential about the practice of forcing immigrants to America to toil for no pay, at least as far as the Founding Fathers looked at it.


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

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