Stephen Colbert's feminist promise for "Late Show": "I’m going to make a show that truly respects women, because I know that there’s more than one way to be one"

The soon-to-be "Late Show" host penned a comedic essay celebrating women for Glamour magazine

By Anna Silman

Published August 14, 2015 1:51PM (EDT)

  (Reuters/Kevork Djansezian)
(Reuters/Kevork Djansezian)

In a charming comedic essay for Glamour, proud feminist Stephen Colbert praised our country’s strong female role models ("Marissa Mayer, Michelle Obama, Sacajawea, and the green M&M”) and apologized for the “sausagefest” that is the current field of late night television. As he writes,"while there are many talented female comedians out there, right now the world of late-night is a bit of a sausagefest. Perhaps one day it will be just the opposite—which I believe is called a Georgia O'Keeffe retrospective."

But, as he points out, his is not the only field with a gender imbalance. "Where are all the lady blacksmiths?" he inquires. "What about the bait-and-tackle shopkeepers, pool maintenance professionals, building superintendents, or CEOs of Fortune 500 companies? Why are all those minions shaped like tiny phalluses? Why did Mad Max get top billing in 'Fury Road' when he was essentially just a grunting tripod for Charlize Theron's rifle? Of course, historically, our thriving U.S. president industry definitely skews male—but that could change in 2016. Carly Fiorina, all eyes are on you.”

Yet couched amid the jokes, Colbert has a serious point to make. After cautioning that it is "not [his] place to mansplain to you about the manstitutionalized manvantages built into Americman manciety," Colbert declares that his “Late Show” is going to celebrate women and tell their stories, no matter what form they come in. As he puts it:

"Point is, I'm here for you, and that means I'm going to do my best to create a Late Show that not only appeals to women but also celebrates their voices. These days TV would have you believe that being a woman means sensually eating yogurt, looking for ways to feel confident on heavy days, and hunting for houses. But I'm going to make a show that truly respects women, because I know that there's more than one way to be one. Maybe you're a woman who likes women. Maybe you like women and men. Maybe you're a woman who's recently transitioned. Maybe you're a guy who's reading this magazine because your girlfriend bought a copy and it looked interesting. Whoever you are, I promise: I'm going to lean in on this. It really accentuates my muffin top."

Read the rest of the essay -- which showcases Colbert's feminist perspective, perhaps "because most of it was written by two female writers on my staff" --  over at Glamour.

Anna Silman

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Feminism Glamour Stephen Colbert The Late Show Tv