Stephen Colbert didn’t hold back while taking jabs at President Donald Trump during his 2017 Emmy Award opening. The ceremony’s host, 53, kicked off the 69th annual award show at L.A.’s Microsoft Theater on Sunday, September 17, leaving nothing off limits, including the president’s claims the award show is rigged, excessive tweeting and more. (Watch a clip above!)
The bit started with the Late Show host, Allison Janney and Anthony Anderson discussing the current world issues before breaking out into a satirical musical number about how despite all of the issues, everything is better on TV.
Julia Louis Dreyfus, Chance the Rapper and more appeared throughout the musical number to sing about the nominated shows while also discussing current political issues, from Russian spies to women’s health.
“Look on the bright side, Handmaids, at least your health care’s free,” Colbert sang, referring to The Handmaid’s Tale. “At least our future’s better on TV.”
When Colbert took the stage, he took a moment to thank first responders who assisted during recent hurricanes Irma and Harvey, encouraging viewers to continue to donate. Soon after, he began to take jabs at Trump.
After acknowledging that there were more than 450 original scripted shows created this year, Colbert said, “There’s no way anyone could watch that much TV, other than the president.” As the audience cheered, he added: “Looking forward to the tweets!”
“The biggest TV star of the last year is Donald Trump,” Colbert continued. “You can’t deny every show is influenced by Donald Trump in some way. All the late night shows, obviously, House of Cards, the new season of American Horror Story, and of course next year’s Latin Grammys hosted by sheriff Joe Arpaio. Muy caliente!”
The host then referenced Trump’s past issues with the annual awards ceremony. “We all know the Emmys mean a lot to Donald Trump because he was nominated multiple times for Celebrity Apprentice, but he never won,” Colbert said. “Why didn’t you give him an Emmy? If he had won an Emmy, I bet he wouldn’t have run for president.”
“I thought you people loved morally compromised antiheroes,” Colbert continued. “You like Walter White? He’s just Walter Much Whiter. He never forgave you and he never will. The president has complained repeatedly that the Emmys are rigged.”
Colbert then pulled up a tweet from 2014 in which the president bashed Seth Meyers as host, saying he had marbles in his mouth. When Colbert asked Meyers for a response, the camera panned to the Late Night host, who shook his head as marbles fell out.
Colbert showed yet another example of Trump’s disdain over losing an Emmy as he played a clip from a 2016 presidential debate against Hillary Clinton. “There was even a time when he didn’t get an Emmy for his TV program three years in a row and he started tweeting that the Emmys were rigged,” Clinton said. Trump interrupted her, saying he “should’ve gotten it.”
The audience erupted in cheers as the camera panned to Sarah Hyland, who was in tears from laughter.
To end the monologue, Colbert shocked the audience when he brought out Sean Spicer to let viewers know that this would be the biggest Emmys audience ever.