“Ladies and gentlemen, my guest tonight certainly needs no introduction,” Stephen Colbert announced on Monday.
After more than eight years since signing on as host of The last showDavid Letterman was welcomed back to the Ed Sullivan Theater with a huge standing ovation on Monday.
“Ladies and gentlemen, my guest tonight certainly needs no introduction,” announced his successor, Stephen Colbert, just before the audience began singing “David.” Letterman smiled as the crowd grew louder and joked, “Will there be trouble?”
Elsewhere in the interview, Colbert commented on Letterman’s observation that the night chair is a “weird job that a lot of people don’t understand.” He continued: “I’m lucky to have my friend John Stewart to talk to about this strange job and my friends at Attack Force Five… Was there someone for you, when you were in the chair, that you could do this with? Someone you could call and talk to about it. Could you call Johnny (Carson)?”
Letterman responded that while he had “great respect for these guys,” he was “an orphan in the talk show world.” Although his response elicited a unanimous sound of sympathy from the crowd, the former presenter interjected: “Well, I don’t appreciate sarcasm.”
To end the night, The National gave an emotional performance of “Space Invader” to welcome the late-night legend. Before the band’s performance, Letterman told Colbert that this was “the second time in my life that this would happen here tonight” – referencing the Foo Fighters’ historic appearance on their final episode of Late show. “So those two groups, I will love them forever,” Letterman said.
Although Letterman has made previous late-night television appearances since leaving, The last show – he is invited in Jimmy Kimmel live It is Late Night with Seth Meyerslike this the final episode in The Late Show with James Corden earlier this year — Monday’s episode marked the first time he returned to the show he launched on CBS in 1993.