I was glued to CNN all last night until the wee hours of the morning, jumping in my skin every time Wolf Blitzer took a hit off the electoral map and enthusiastically cued the CNN "Key Race Alert" graphic, (brought to you by Audi!). There is nothing healthy or good about watching election results roll in like that in a good year—let alone in an election where a hate-fueled megalomaniac who couldn't give a shit about anyone other than himself was able to charm a majority of voters (what happened to those other 100 million American voters, by the way, who didn't vote?).
But it was impossible to look away. Maybe if I subscribed to Showtime, I could have broken up the despair with Stephen Colbert's election night special, aptly named "Stephen Colbert’s Live Election Night Democracy’s Series Finale: Who’s Going to Clean Up This Shit?" I was able to live stream the monologue, which looked completely tone-deaf and misguided (understandably so—this was an election special that wasn't written thinking that the majority of its audience would be at knife's edge, clutching pillows and tissues). No one was in the mood to laugh at something that was no longer a tasteless joke gone too far.
But from what I've watched this morning, Colbert experienced the same real time horror as many of us did—he just had a camera pointed at him. "We all now feel the way Rudy Giuliani looks," he says at the top of the clip below, which came from the very end of the broadcast. The clip is titled, "Stephen Tries To Make Sense Of All This," but it should have been titled, "Stephen Drinks More Poison."
This segment, which came earlier in the evening, features Joel Heilemann and Mark Halperin, the documentarians behind Showtime's The Circus. This was the moment when Colbert's plans for the show decidedly went off-track, as he announces that Trump won Florida to audible gasps in the room. Halperin had the scariest line of the night: "Outside of the Civil War, World War II and including 9/11, this may be the most cataclysmic event the country’s ever seen."
“Wow," Colbert said as Trump leapt toward 270. "That’s a horrifying prospect. I can’t put a happy face on that, and that’s my job."
There were other segments that I have not, and probably will not watch. This was the opening cartoon about the "Dawn Of The Donald" that brings up his "cold, competitive" father and Obama mocking him at the 2011 White House correspondents’ dinner.
Jeff Goldblum was one of the guests. He seemed as dazed as anyone else.
There was also an appearance by Melania Trump impersonator Laura Benanti. She is very good at this impression, so maybe you need something like this right now.