The biting satirist at his hilarious best – plus a great Daily Show bonus

By Amanda Michelle Steiner
Updated December 19, 2014 02:15 PM
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Credit: Andrew Harrer/DPA/Zuma

After nearly 10 years on the air, The Colbert Report ended its run Thursday with a star-studded farewell for its host, Stephen Colbert. (Or “Stephen Colbert,” as it were.)

Colbert didn’t break character for a moment on the series finale. For those hoping for a heartwarming farewell speech, you were out of luck.

However, his send-off was still plenty emotional. As his former boss Jon Stewart joined him onstage, the two began a rousing rendition of “We’ll Meet Again,” joined by James Franco, George Lucas, Bryan Cranston, Elijah Wood, Patrick Stewart, Big Bird and many, many more.

Of course, Colbert, 50, is moving on to greener pastures, or at least bigger ones – he’ll be taking over The Late Show duties from David Letterman. But that doesn’t mean we won’t miss the absolutely perfect political satire with which he has graced audiences for 1,447 episodes.

Because we’ll miss him so, let’s revisit Colbert’s five best moments from the Report, in no particular order.

1. "Stephen’s Laws of Love," February 2006

Colbert once offered relationship advice to celebrities in a segment called “Stephen’s Laws of Love.” “Find someone whose name who can be merged with yours to form a marketable nickname,” he said, using the examples of Brangelina, Bennifer 2 and Filliam H. Muffman. Colbert could not keep his cool, totally breaking on camera, and cementing “Filliam H. Muffman” in our minds as the greatest possible celebrity portmanteau.

2. "Suq Madiq," August 2011

Okay, so maybe it’s just hilarious to watch a comedian break character. Colbert cracked up again over the name of a (fictional) Muslim contributor to the Colbert Super Pac named “Suq Madiq,” and even worse, his mother, “Munchma Quchi.”

According to Internet legend (aka, Reddit), the real reason Colbert laughed so hard in this segment was because they switched out the stock photo they had used in rehearsal and put it on of his mother-in-law, but it was probably just because he had to say “Munchma Quchi” on television.

3. "Colbert Runs for President," October 2007

Before President Obama took office, Colbert said on his show that “you cannot swing a dead cat these days without hitting a presidential candidate” before announcing his own run for president. (As he wrote in a New York Times op-ed at the time, “voters are desperate for a white, male, middle-aged, Jesus-trumpeting alternative.”)

Colbert actually ran, too – he paid the fee to be included on the ballot for South Carolina, but was denied a place by the South Carolina Democratic Party executive council.

4. "Truthiness," October 2005

There are two kinds of people, Colbert said when he first introduced the word “truthiness”: “Those who think with their head and know with their heart.” He added: “Anyone can read the news to you – I promise to feel the news at you,” he said, perfectly summing up the problem of political punditry masquerading as news.

Colbert’s definition of “truthiness” hit Merriam-Webster in 2006: “Truth that comes from the gut, not books.”

5. "#CancelColbert," March 2014

“I am willing to show #Asian community I care by introducing the Ching-ChongDing-Dong Foundation for Sensitivity to Orientals or Whatever,” read a Tweet sent out by the (now-deleted) official Twitter account for The Colbert Report. The out-of-context joke prompted users to trend the hashtag “#CancelColbert.”

However, the joke was part of a longer segment in which he made fun of Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder’s establishment of the Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation in response to criticism over the team’s name. Of course, one month later, Colbert announced he would actually be leaving the Report for The Late Show, so you won this round, Internet. Kind of.

BONUS: "Prince Charles Scandal" on The Daily Show, November 2003

The Daily Show was important for Colbert getting to where he is now, and his work on that show could not go unmentioned. While discussing a rumor that Prince Charles had engaged in a sexual encounter with a male royal aide, Colbert “[made] love to a Chiquita,” as he described it to Entertainment Weekly. It’s a must-watch.

But don’t weep for the loss of Colbert the character – on the finale, Colbert killed Grimmy the grim reaper with his trusty pistol and “life partner,” Sweetness, and has achieved immortality.

What’s your favorite memory of Colbert? Sound off in the comments below.