September 6, 2011 — Tim Pawlenty

The Colbert Report Episode Guide EPISODE NUMBER: 7111 (September 6, 2011)
GUESTS: Governor Tim Pawlenty
SEGMENTS: Michele Bachmann’s Natural Disaster Metaphor | The Word – Happy Endings | Cheating Death – Placebocisers and Vaxamalgam
SUIT REPORT: Black Pinstriped Suit | White Shirt | Gray / Light Blue Striped tie
VIDEOS: Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A great return to shows brings a refreshing take down of Michele Bachmann, highlights of the Earthicane, and some profound quasi-nihilistic philosophy during The Word. But what does it matter? We’re all going to die one day.

I thought that the Cheating Death segment was going to be put on permanent hiatus, due to the legal issues rumbling about from Vaxa International that were alluded to last time we saw this segment. But apparently, that is all water under the Swedish bridge now, because there was no re-spelling or renaming of Prescott Pharmaceuticals proud Vaxa-line.

I was expecting a little more spark (and not coming from any orifices) from Tim Pawlenty, but he was as flat and placid as his now defunct presidential campaign. He gave up because he didn’t raise enough money? Who would want a President who gave up so easily when she or he experienced some mild difficulty? No wonder some of our Minnesotan Hubsters were less than effusive in their praise of their former Gov.

Enjoy some quotes and caps from this episode, and feel free to share your impressions in the comments. You may wonder why I write the quotes out-it is kind of a tribute to the way DB and NFZ used to do their episode guides, but also, I like to highlight the great writing that comprises this fantastic show. So do enjoy.


— I ‘ve been on break for two weeks, and while I was gone the East Coast struck hit by an earthquake and a hurricane. One more natural disaster and we get a free blizzard.
–If you’re watching and your gay, I want you to wake up your partner; I want Rafael to hear to this too.
–I wasn’t stateside when this went down, I was in New Zealand. It is the only place to get Maori warrior fur covered crotch flaps at a reasonable price. My old ones are all worn out.
–So when I heard that [God] had hit the Mid-Alantic states with both a hurricane and and earthquake, I naturally thought, how gay did the gays gay it this time? Is Washington D.C. now AC/DC?
–Did Lincoln give Jefferson a reach-around? Did Lady Liberty join a softball league?
–Well, it turns out, it wasn’t caused by the gays, and I sincerely apologize for the insensitive things I just said about them.
–Yes, hurricanes have that hole in the middle because they are God’s megaphone he uses so that politicians can hear the American people over his earlier earthquake, which I believe is God’s sub-woofer.
–Well of course, the blame-screen screamia
–Ok, metaphor. In this Metaphor, God represents the American people, politicians represent themselves, and the hurricane represents the earthquake, ok? And Bachmann herself is a a simile, because she is “like” or “as” someone who makes sense.
–I am not talking about the “Happy Ending” that show up on your credit card bill as “Shipping and Handling.”
–That’s why I always read the end of a book first. That way, I can sit back, put my feet up on the book, and enjoy some TV. [Of Mice and Two-and-a-Half Men.]
–Because I know this sentence is going to end with applause, I can savor all the words leading up to the greatest audience in the world. [You are all whores.]
–For those of you who have not seen them, allow me to maximize the enjoyment of the following movies: Rosebud is a sled, Bruce Willis is dead, Ed Norton is Brad Pitt, it was Earth all along, Soylent Green is People, she’s got a dong, Darth Vader is Luke’s father, Leah is his sister, and C3PO isn’t’ fooling anyone. [Gold Lame Codpiece? Please.]
–So get ready for the granddaddy of all spoilers: you die. Did I just turn that frown upside down? [Mortician can fix that.]
–And if you a parent, and your kids are driving you nuts, draining your energy and your bank account, and take forever to put their shoes on, here’s the twist: they leave you. [And roll their eyes when you call.]
–Everything ends– the job you hate, the money you owe, tiny pork pie hats, planking, your second mortgage, the national debt, summer. [Unless Republicans Filibuster Autumn.]
–Scientists say all energy will bleed from the universe, and existence as we know it will cease. [Though Beach Boys Will Continue to Tour.]
–Eventually, even this show will be canceled. [Here we come, TBS!] (CN’s note: Noooooooo!)
–It’s true. It’s the reason I now know Green Lantern is really about the 12 dollars I’ll never get back. [Even power ring couldn’t generate plot.]
–So since we have two options, we can either worry or enjoy the show.
–And that’s The Word-although I bet you saw that coming.
–I’m a faith healer. If you are coming to me for medical advice, I recommend you start praying.
–From the thigh master to the bow flex, you burn a lot of calories shoving that stuff under your bed.
–Put some sketchers on those things, Fattie!
–I want shoes to shape my ass, an adjustable bed to force my body into the shape of a crunch, and burritos big enough to use as dumbells.
–Like I am going to trust the American Council on Exercise. Have you seen Americans? They don’t know exercise.
–Everyone knows, the more prescription drugs cost, the better they work.
–No way. If have a brand-name affliction, I want a name brand cure. Lou Gehrig didn’t go to the trouble of endorsing his disease, so it could be treated with some cheap, generic knock-off.
–Remember our motto, Pres-scott, not charges.

Interview QuotZ

SC: Why did you drop out after Ames?
T-Paw: I was out of money, and I came in third place after Ron Paul and MIchele Bachmann. I think that is more for any one person to endure.

SC: Did you think about learning to juggle?
TP: I thought about shooting sparks out my butt.
SC: I would vote for that! Now let me ask you something, when you were running for President, would you have actually given me that answer?

We will take that as a compliment.

I love how he gets a kick out of those skeleton graphics.

"Put some sketchers on those things, Fattie!"

"While Bristol-Meyers Squibb introduced Reese's Peanut Butter Plavix."

  • lockhart43

    Oh, how I’ve missed saying “I love that tie!” at the top of every episode! At least the two weeks seemed to go by fast, for me anyway. I was thrilled that Stephen mentioned the Bachmann comment about Hurricane Irene. How many times does she have to say something stupid for enough people to notice and tell her to go away? Also, I’m not sure I can property articulate how much I loved Stephen’s seriously adorable reaction to his terrible “blame screem scredia” pun.

    Hooray for a Cheating Death! Cheating Death always = awesome character break, and this one did not fail to deliver. The Word was great, too, especially Stephen’s series of movie spoilers and the [You Are All Whores] bullet point. I have to say I enjoyed the T-Paw interview as well. T-Paw did a bit of pandering, of course, but I appreciated that it was laid back and he didn’t make me cringe too bad. A solid show? I’d say so!

    And in TDS Land…you go Buddy Roemer!

    • lockhart43

      Going by second viewing reassurance, one part of the Pawlenty interview that I really could have done without: Pawlenty saying that he would endorse Stephen as a 2012 candidate. Un. Necessary.

  • Karenatasha

    Oh, welcome back, Stephen! And a really amazing and unusual WORD to greet us, too. So kind and generous of you to think of our needs. Plus, we get a Bachmann zinger (I knew he would!) and a little nip at Pawlenty’s “a**” comment. Oh, oh, and a Sarah Palin crack, as well.

    Stephen, you spoil us. We missed you. And bravo to Jon and John (Oliver). Very nicely done.

    *Dancing a little samba happy dance*

  • Mr. Arkadin

    I loved this show! A breezy dismissing of Bachmann. (She doesn’t deserve anything more. She’s done.) A wonderful “The Word.” And of course, “Cheating Death.” Given America’s obsession with weight and body image, I always get a kick out of Stephen calling an attractive skinny woman a “fattie.” Ha! I’m sure she’ll be able to get rid of all that excess fat by putting on her magic shoes! I also loved the giant soap bar of pills. I was so hoping Stephen would be able to get through all those pill names without cracking up. Well. Not hoping too much. 😉
    Oh, yeah. And Tim Pawlenty was on…
    Anyway, It was a great show!

  • Mr. Arkadin

    @Karenatasha Asides from the John Oliver bit. I found TDS was rather disappointing. I’m not a fan of James Hoffa at all, but to not address the fact that Fox spent all of yesterday airing an edited clip of what Hoffa said, to gin-up false outrage really took me aback. This should have been right in their wheelhouse and they ignored it.
    All for the sake of advancing Jon’s “Let’s all be reasonable” line. It really upset me.

    • Erika

      Jon has been a lot more like that now…..overselling his idea of being fair minded and reasonable. I’m all for reason, of course. In my house I’m always the one who tries to see both sides of things and it frustrates my husband to no end, but going out of your way to prove that you are fair isn’t always right either….sometimes there just isn’t two sides.

      • Mr. Arkadin

        Superbly put. I agree.

    • Karenatasha

      @Mr.Arkadin: Yeah–can I have a little fear here? Sometimes you SHOULD be scared. Sometimes the psychotic lunatics ARE running the asylum.

      Jon can be brilliant, but you know, reasonable doesn’t always make the best comedy. He did point out the craziness of the reaction to Hoffa, but he could have been far more savage about the right-wing’s own over-the-top violent rhetoric. He mentioned it, but he was a bit wimpy. Again, though: I love Jon Oliver.

      • Mr. Arkadin

        “Yeah–can I have a little fear here?”


        I sometimes think Jon has been beaten down by the years of stupidity he’s seen during his tenure on TDS that his only answer to keep himself sane is this “Pox on both their houses” mentality he’s develops recently. It might be fine as far as the two political parties are concerned. (As they devolve into looking like each other.) But, I don’t think it works to describe labor’s fight against right-wing corporate gangsterism.

  • anais0509

    Oh man! It’s so good to have the boys back! They are always refreshed and on fire when they come back on the air! And one thing that I love that’s guaranteed to happen after a long break: character breaks! Even Jon wasn’t able to get through some lines without flubbing them and giggling! Speaking of TDS, having seen Buddy Roemer not too long ago at my first TCR taping, it was good to see him again. I’m not sure he stands a chance, but he seems somewhat reasonably sane and it really is a nice change to watch and listen to a Republican who’s not shouting and throwing fits like a child all over the place.

    Now, this episode…what can I say? It was just great. The Word was spot-on as always, although it got a wee bit depressing when he mentioned that one special show we know will end one day like all things (no no no no no no no). Being one of my favourite segments and after quite an absence, I was really happy for a Cheating Death with requisite character breaks (I swear, I started squealing when he began leading into it because it is just one of those segments that guarantees breaks almost all the time); I’d almost forgotten how to throw my head back while roaring with laughter until he brought out the pill bar prop. I literally don’t really think too much of T-Paw, so I have nothing to say about the interview and I don’t really feel like getting into any debates about him, though it was good to see “Stephen” in action again. Great job, boys! Good to have you both back!

    • susan209

      You would think that I would have something articulate to say after your very nice post, but honestly, I keep staring at your new gravatar!
      Great gravatar, Anais!

      • anais0509

        Hahaha! Thanks, Susan! I was wondering if anyone would notice that I’d changed it! I was serious when I said that that J.D. Salinger letters photo is officially my favourite photo of all time. I love it so much that I decided to make it my new gravatar before anyone else did. Took me a while to get it cropped right, but I did it! It’s just such a lovely photo. I swear, if that photo was a stuffed toy or ironed on a pillow, I would cuddle and fall asleep with it every night. His angel eyes are so soothing and warm that you can’t help but gaze into them while drifting off to Dreamland and hoping he’ll come along with you and…

        *snaps back to attention* Um…I’m sorry…what were we talking about? Ooh! New episodes coming up in two minutes! *scampers off to the TV room*

  • Caroline

    I loved the Word – funny and thought-provoking, plus the physical comedy of Stephen eating popcorn and reacting to imaginary events was great. I always like “Cheating Death”, and it’s true he almost always cracks up during that segment.

    I agree that Pawlenty was just pretending to be funny and easy-going. I don’t buy it. Glad Stephen called him on that “shooting sparks out of my ass” line.

  • John McGaff

    Do some of Stephens jokes seem a little out of character this week? Also, I feel he has become more sincerely polite to his guests this week. Has anyone else noticed a change?

    • CN Helper

      Welcome to the site! I don’t really think Stephen has been doing anything differently. He has often said that he will dial the character up or down depending on the circumstances, so maybe you are referring to that sensibility.

    • susan209

      I agree with CN Helper, but I did notice that his interview with Robin Wright was almost a little too toned down. I read a review of her book in the NY Times today, and the reviewer felt as I did, that her premise was way too pie-in-the-sky. I was surprised that Stephen didn’t take her to task just a bit more, but he may not have even read the book, at least in its entirety. And she is a very sweet, warm person, so that may have made him tone it down, too. But I did notice what you’re referring to in that one interview. Thanks for posting, John.
      Was there any specific interview in which you felt he was unusually out of character?*

      *Footnote: Today, 9/11, is of course a very meaningful day for all of us, but it’s especially meaningful for Stephen as he experienced a great loss on that day decades ago, before 9/11 was “9/11.” I wonder if your perception of him being somehow softer has anything to do with that weighing on him. Then again, he’s very professional, so perhaps not.