tv The Late Show With Stephen Colbert CBS September 24, 2019 11:35pm-12:37am PDT
the late show with stephen colbert is next. our xtnewscast will be tomorrow mor ng. we will captioning sponsored by cbs >> president trump had a phone call with the ukrainian president, in which he is said to have pressured the threerd investigate former vice president joe biden and his son hunter. >> "the late show" has acquired this exclusive audio. ( phone ringing )
( cheers and applause ) >> stephen: come on! wooo! wow! wow! >> stephen: please, have a seat! sit! thank you very much! welcome to "the late show." ladies and gentlemen, i'm your host, stephen colbert. ( cheers and applause ) oh, good lordy. what a day. you really feel the ground shifting under your feet. but it you've got a seatbelt on your couch, one: why? number two: buckle up, because for two and a half years, donald trump has had scandal after scandal: russian collusion, obstruction of justice, saying nazis are fine people, being an unnamed
co-conspirator to campaign finance violations, lying about the moscow trump tower, stealing money to pay for the border wall, faking the weather with a sharpie. every time-- every time-- none of those is made up. every time, people have asked, "is this the thing? surely, this must be the thing." and every time, it wasn't the thing. ( laughter ) but here's the thing: there's a new thing, and it might be the thing. ( cheers and applause ) because this afternoon, nancy pelosi did this thing: >> today, i'm announcing the house of representatives moving forward with an official impeachment inquiry. ( cheers and applause )
>> stephen: aaahhh! okay! okay! okay, but how do you feel? ( laughter ) i'll say this-- finally, a check on the president! up until now, we've only had a check from the president to a porn star. ( laughter ) now, to make her case, pelosi reached back to the earliest days of the republic. >> on the final day of the constitutional convention in 1787, when our constitution was adopted, americans gathered on the steps of independence hall to await the news of the government our founders had crafted.
>> stephen: and a young bernie sanders was there to complain about it. ( laughter ) (as bernie) "the top 1% of the landowners are represented by 45% of the legislature! and they refuse to adopt my universal leechcraft. all leeches are covered: leeches, bleeding, releasing demons from the skull." she quoted the words of one of our founders. >> they asked benjamin franklin, "what do we have, a republic or a monarchy?" franklin replied, "a republic, if you can keep it." >> stephen: wise words... from a man who then took his kite and went outside to invent getting hit by lightning. ( laughter ) now, she announced she would be giving the impeachment inquiry to members of different committees. >> i'm directing our six committees to proceed with their investigations under that umbrella. >> stephen: smart. they found trump's greatest weakness: umbrella. ( laughter ) ( applause ) so-- so--
>> jon: can't deal with that. >> stephen: so why is this the thing? well, long-time viewers of america know that last week a mysterious whistleblower accused trump of making a troubling promise to an unnamed foreign leader. then, friday, it was reported that trump tried to extort ukraine into a political probe of joe biden and his son. no wonder pelosi's launching an impeachment investigation. this makes watergate look like nixon tried to pass an expired coupon at the kroger. (as nixon) "i had no idea that these yogurt coupons were no longer valid. and, furthermore, i believe that when the president redeems it, a coupon is never expired. fruit on the bottom." ( cheers and applause ) a little carrot-- carrot in the throat.
for the details, let's go to our brand-new, ongoing segment: >> "where in the world is donald colluding with who in the what?" oh, no! >> stephen: according to the whistleblower, on one phone call in july, trump pressured ukrainian president, volodymyr zelensky, to investigate the bidens about eight times. eight times? in one phone call? those are numbers you normally see with a toddler asking for a balloon. (as trump) "hello, volodymyr. yeah, this is donald trump. i'm just calling to say i want a balloon. i want a balloon. i want a balloon. i want a balloon. i want a balloon. no, okay? i want a balloon. i want a balloon." i want a balloon. i want a balloon. i want a balloon. hello? hello?" oh, and fun fact: if the end of democracy sounds like fun to you, trump's phone call with ukraine's leader took place, literally, the day after the special counsel
robert s. mueller iii testified to congress about russian interference. so the idea that a foreign power like russia shouldn't interfere in our elections is the only thing everyone agreed on-- everyone but trump, because he just moved one country over. (as trump) "okay, no collusion with russia. okay. hello, ukraine, you up-- for interfering with our election? no? no, you don't want to do that? okay, do you have poland's number?" ( laughter ) yesterday, trump was at the u.n. and issued this denial: >> there was no pressure put on them whatsoever. i put no pressure on them whatsoever. i could have. i think it would probably, possibly, have been okay if i did. but i didn't. >> stephen: wow. you wouldn't want him as your lawyer. (as judge) "how does the defendant plead?" (as lawyer) "the defendant pleads notonor.
i mean, he could have done it, might have done it, and it might have been fine. so, probably possibly guilty. who knows? you know what? guilty. let's see what happens." probably fine." then, this afternoon-- is this this afternoon? ( cheers and applause ) so guilty. so guilty. then, this afternoon, trump announced that he was going to release the full, unredacted transcript of the phone call, promising, "you will see it was a very friendly and totally appropriate call. no pressure and, unlike joe biden and his son, no quid pro quo!" (as trump) "it wasn't a quid pro quo. it was much more of a tit for tat. that way, i get to say 'tit.'" ( laughter )sohe president ce was no pressure. he says there was no pressure. but trump ordered a hold on military aid to ukraine days before calling the ukrainian president.
okay, that sounds like pressure. because ukraine is fighting an undeclared war with russia at their eastern border, and you withhold our military aid. (as trump) "look, if you want our help stopping them from taking more than crimea, you've got to do crime with mea. do you understand? hello? hello, mabel?" ( laughter ) ( applause ) here's the thing-- constitutionally it is not up to trump to allocate foreign military aid. that is congress' job. so to allay suspicion, administration officials were instructed to tell lawmakers that the delays were part of an "interagency process." yes, it's a complex interagency process where the administration commits crimes and... okay, it's much simpler than i thought.
it's just-- and it's not just the transcript it's not just the transcript of the phone call, because this afternoon, "the senate unanimously agreed to schumer's resolution calling for the whistleblower complaint to be turned over to the intelligence committees immediately." ( cheers and applause ) unanimous! >> jon: yeah, baby! >> stephen: republicans! democrats! everybody! turn it over! >> jon: come on! >> stephen: i feel like i just had my whistle blown! ( laughter ) and i am ready to release the full transcript. plus-- is it adam schiff? adam schiff, chairman of the house intelligence committee, tweeted "we have been informed by the whistleblower's counsel that their client would like to speak to our committee and has requested guidance from the acting d.n.i. as to how to do so. we're in touch with counsel and look forward to the whistleblower's testimony as soon as this week." ( cheers and applause ) wow. this is historic.
historic. hi-stor-ic. it's historic, high-stakes testimony in congress from someone with intimate knowledge of trump's criminal wrongdoing. we haven't had one of those in days! ( laughter ) now, we don't know who this wib is yet, but based on their high placement in the trump administration and ongoing disgust with the president's behavior, we have generated this computer model. ( laughter ) ( applause ) we don't know. that's all-- that's all-- those are fractals. this evening-- this evening, trump responded to pelosi's announcement, calling it a democratic plot. >> our country is doing the best it's ever done, and they're going to lose the election, and they figure this is a thing to do. we're in the election. and i mean, if she does, that
they all say that's a positive for me for the election. >> stephen: you know, mr. president, i heard the same thing. impeachment could be very positive for you. so logically, it would be more positive if you stepped down now. you-- ( cheers and applause ) >> jon: come on! get on! >> stephen: you could run as an outsider for awe second first term, okay? think about it, not too hard. we've got a great show for you tonight. whoopi goldberg is here. but when we return, "meanwhile." ♪ buckle up for some insurance themed fun ♪
♪ at progressive park! children: yeah! announcer: ride the totally realistic traffic jam. ♪ beep, beep, beep, beep children: traffic jam! announcer: and the world's first never bump bumper cars. children: never bump! announcer: it's a real savings hootenanny with options that fit your budget. that's fun for the whole family. announcer: only at progressive par... maybe an insurance park was a bad idea. yeah. yep. stop dancing around the pain that keeps you up again, and again. advil pm silences pain, and you sleep the whole night. advil pm s before she puts them in the dishwasher. so what does the dishwasher do? (vo) cascade platinum does the work for you. prewashing and removing stuck-on foods, the first time.
in a vast desert completely wdevoid of basset hounds. [ back in baby's arms by patsy cline ] then, it appeared a beacon of hope. ♪ i'm back in baby's arms more glorious than a billion sunsets. we were found. ♪ i'm back where i belong found by the hounds. ♪ back in baby's arms how do you get skin happy aveeno® with prebiotic oat. it hydrates and softens skin. so it looks like this... and you feel like this. aveeno® daily moisturizer get skin happy™
did you eat all of your treats? ♪ help! i need somebody ♪ help! not just anybody ♪ help! you know i need someone the juul record. they took $12.8 billion from big tobacco. juul marketed mango, mint, and menthol flavors, addicting kids to nicotine. five million kids now using e-cigarettes. the fda said juul ignored the law with misleading health claims. now juul is pushing prop c, to overturn san francisco's e-cigarette protections. say no to juul, no to big tobacco, no to prop c. 6 months, 6 push-ups. ready,up.. down. down. uh-uh. that's one. that's two. inhale. down. get down. get down.
( band playing ) ( cheers and applause ) >> stephen: jon batiste and stay human, everybody! give it up for the band right there! everybody, jon, two great guests tonight. two fantastic guests tonight. in just a minute whoopi goldberg will be out here in just a minute. and then the great-- the great ta-nehisi coates is going to be out here. he has his first novel, extraordinary, extraordinary, beautiful, beautiful work of art. you know, i spend a lot of time over there, sanding and lacquering the biggest news stories of the day into the sleek, hydrodynamic double-skull rower that is my monologue. but sometimes i like to sift through the junkyard, haul out an old pickup truck, knock the wheels off, strap some oil
bareilless and use a tennis racket to paddle out to sea on the jury-rigged survival raft of news that is my segment: >> meanwhile. >> stephen: "meanwhile." sometimes you don't get a chance. sometimes shoot from the hip. shoot from the hip. this is one of those times. let's see what survives. i have no idea! meanwhile, this footage has gone the eagles' loss to the lions on sunday. plot twist: turns out that man is "eric furda, the university and when you don't get into u-penn, his rejection letters are... brutal. meanwhile, meanwhile-- i'm kind of surprised-- i'm kind of surprised that joke survived
into the show. i'm a little surprised that joke made it into the show. meanwhile, just in time for halloween, there's a new sexy mister rogers costume. excuse me, we already had a sexy mister rogers: mister rogers, okay? ( cheers and applause ) the man-- the man was erotic napalm. oh, he would take you to the land of make-believe. meow. ( laughter ) (as henrietta pussycat) "meow, meow, horny meow." ( laughter ) another joke i wasn't sure was going to make it into the show. no! do not cut that joke! meanwhile, the new "downton abbey" movie dominated the box office this weekend. and as part of the film's promotion, you can now book the "downton abbey" castle on airbnb,
other movies have done this before. there have been limited-time listings for tony stark's cabin from "avengers: endgame" and bella swan's family home from "twilight." and my personal favorite, the hole from silence of the before leaving, it puts the lotion in the basket, and it loads the dishwasher. meanwhile, in restful slumber news, these new qaect-resistant beds are naik the round online. >> stephen: aww, yeah! wooo! who knew that being buried alive in a cold metal casket could be so funky?
( laughter ) now, as you can see in the video, the device acts as a normal bed until an earthquake is detected, whereupon, it becomes a mini-fortress, which can be stocked with food, emergency supplies, and plenty of water. there is no toilet, however, so make sure to bring a pillow case you don't care about. but why do i need to wait for an earthquake? i'm ready to go now. give me a self-lubricating catheter, and i'm all about that box life. heck, i'll do the show in there. "but, stephen," you say, interrupting me, "how could you do your show in there?" i'm glad you asked. check it out. welcome to "the late box." i'm stephen colbert. tonight, donald trump ordered strikes to iran. i think if i put it up to my ear, i can hear the tv in the next room. it might beci: newle or "pepper pig."
what did the sky look like? do you remember, jon? >> jon: yeah, how did i get here? i fell asleep on my couch and i ended up in this box. >> stephen: read your contract, jon. you agreed to be buried together in my tv box. it's under the pharaoh box. we have to eat our way through the memory foam. stop hogging the oxygen. we have to save enough for musical guests imagine dragons. guys? are you about ready? dan? they don't look so good. >> jon: i'm getting dizzy. >> stephen: well, that solves the food problem. ♪ la-la-la-la go into the light ♪ ( laughter ) >> stephen: stick around for james cordon. good night! >> stephen: we'll be right back good night! >> stephen: we'll be right back with whoopi goldberg.
good night! >> stephen: we'll be right back with i'm not picking it up. well, somebody's gotta pick it up. i'll pick it up. they're clean! ♪ cuz my hiney's clean ♪ oh yeah, i'm charmin clean ♪ that's how i know they're clean ♪ (vo) charmin ultra strong is woven like a wash cloth and just cleans better. ♪ yeah, i'm charmin clean the kid does have a point. (vo) enjoy the go with charmin. and for an extra clean finish, try charmin flushable wipes. full of tasty, good for you ingredients. fresh and filling. so that you too will be full of good. try our new warm grain bowls today. order now on doordash. but allstate helps you. with drivewise. feedback that helps you drive safer. and that can lower your cost now that you know the truth... are you in good hands?
cologuard: colon cancer and older at average risk. i've heard a lot of excuses to avoid screening for colon cancer. i'm not worried. it doesn't run in my family. i can do it next year. no rush. cologuard is the noninvasive option that finds 92% of colon cancers. you just get the kit in the mail, go to the bathroom, collect your sample, then ship it to the lab. there's no excuse for waiting. get screened. ask your doctor if cologuard is right for you. covered by medicare and most major insurers.
( band playing ) ( cheers and applause ) >> stephen: hey, everybody! welcome back! ladies and gentlemen, folks, my first guest is an egot winner and a cohost of "the view." she's written a new book called "the unqualified hostess." please welcome back to "the late ♪ ♪ ( applause ) ( applause ) >> that's my cousin over there at your piano. jon is my cousin. >> stephen: you guys are
cousins? >> it turns out we are. >> stephen: did you have your d.n.a. done or something? >> he had his done. they didn't tell me about him. >> stephen: how close are we talking. >> henry louis gates did d.n.a., and we are distant cousins, like third cousins. >> stephen: he did that for me. i got queen noor of jordan, and meryl streep, and elizabeth alexander. >> none of us? >> stephen: what? >> none of us? >> stephen: ahh... like the two of you? >> yeah. i think you should look deeper. >> stephen: i think so. >> just to see! >> stephen: i might hit you up for cash if i find out i'm related, you know,. >> i got you covered. >> stephen: okay, before we do anything else. >> what, babe. >> stephen: nancy pelosi at 5:00 tham this afternoon said tt she was finally going to green light an impeachment investigation against the united states. what are your thoughts on this? what do you think about this? >> i don't really give a
( bleep ). ( laughter ). >> stephen: you-- you-- you do not give a flying flag about that she did it or about him or about the inquiry or my question? >> i don't really care because at this point, i want to have some fun. i just want to talk aboutmethhae ridiculousness that goes on in washington. so i just really care about my book right now, stephen. >> stephen: really? >> yeah. because you know -- >> stephen: you don't think that's in any way-- that's not selfish in any way, that the president of the united states might be pressuring other countries-- >> and you think i'm being selfish you? know this guy has been doing this. you can run, take this ball with you, and run with it. i run with this ball every day, and tonight i don't care. tonight, i wrote a great book. i did! and let me-- let me -- >> stephen: whoopi, whoopi, don't get me wrong.
we're going to talk about the book. there's no fear. but you do have opinions about this cat. >> but i have to do this tomorrow. i do this all day long. >> stephen: i have to do this tomorrow, too! >> i know, i know. >> stephen: and right now, i'd like someone on the show to have an opinion. >> stephenopinion. >> you know what? what's your opinion? gli can't give your opinion. don't you watch the show? >> no. >> stephen: what were you walking backstage. >> look, you had the coffin with pepper pig in it. >> stephen: i did. >> i saw that. >> stephen: your cousin was in the scene. that's why you watched it. >> the truth is because people have forgotten how to just have a conversation, it is how people approach me all day long-- "what do you think of this? he did this! you know this happened." yeah, i know, but it doesn't matter what i think. what are you going to do about it? i know what i'm going to do? >> stephen: me or them? >> everybody. this is-- listen, i'm sorry, if you're okay with all of this stuff that's going on, then
don't vote! if you don't like what's going on, then get your behinds out there and change it. that's what this little girl is doing, this little greta girl. >> stephen: greta thune berg. >> don't tell me how sad you feel for me, fix it! that's where i'm at now. he has talked to all kinds of despots. he has pretty much done every despicable thing you can do. and people go, "well, you know... that's just how he is." well, okay. now that's what you got. what you going to do with it? but in the interim, i wrote an amazing book! ( cheers and applause ) >> stephen: you know what, i have heard a rumor-- and i hope you can verify this or not. >> okay. >> stephen: i heard you wrote a book. ( laughter ) just on the street. >> right. >> stephen: on the street, you wrote a book. it's called "the unqualified
hostess." >> yes. >> stephen: you have hosted so many things. what-- like, the oscars, "the view," fundraisers. why are you-- in what world are you the unqualified hostess? >> i'm the unqualified hostess in the world of most people's thinking. no one expects a book like this from me, because they're like, "that's whoopi. she's probably just sucking down some beer and smoke a joint," you know. you know? >> stephen: sorry, i'm not into that scene. >> that's not your thing, i know, i know. and i try to be respectful of that. that's why i didn't bring you anything. >> stephen: thank you very much. you have in the past, though. >> that's right, i have. >> stephen: exactly. >> but the idea is that people should have a good time. i wanted people to think about the all the stuff that they knew as kids. my mother taught us how to set the table. not because we had any fancy stuff, but because it was the way we sat down and talk to each other.
and so washing dishes, you know. people have dish washers. i don't know how to use them. i only know how to hand wash dishers. >> stephen: really? >> that's what my tom taught me. i have lots of crazy things in my house and i put them on the dinner table because i like to-- i'm not very social, so it's taken me a while to how to start conversations with people and be-- i'm very sort of singular. >> stephen: well, in this you talk about table-scapes in this book. >> this is-- >> stephen: what's a table-scape? >> i have no idea. >> stephen: it's your damn book! >> i have never called anything a table-scape in my life. other people call stuff table-scapes. that wasn't me. what that is that's a table they liked. to me, the most interesting thing they love about this, is i-- i don't want stuff to be perfect. i just want to learn some stuff. you. >> stephen: say you don't want perfection. you want theitably to tell a story. >> yeah, you know?
and i also want people ton if they really are having a rough day, take yourself to dinner in your kitchen. make-- set your table. make it nice for you. because why shouldn't you have a nice dinner? why shouldn't you do it? you know? ( applause ) >> stephen: best-- double-bareilles question. like, best party you've ever thrown, and if you're hosting a party who do you invite to make it a fun party? >> the best guest i ever got to sat with-- sit with at my table was neal degrasse trice tooison. >> stephen: oh, yes, i have been to a dinner party at his house, i have had him to my house, i have been to somebody else's dinner party. >> everybody wants to know -- >> stephen: bring your own oxygen supply, though, because he will talk for three hours, and you'll enjoy all three hours. >> and you know what's even crazier? you'll remember a lot of it. and that's the thing, i want people to come to my house who
are not going to feel like, "oh, i can't talk to this guy," you know "he can't talk to me. i'm not smart enough." everybody at the table is smart enough to be there. and so i always feel like when neal is at the table, people feel like i didn't know this. i'm interested in this. and they didn't know they were interested in it. >> stephen: that's what it's like to hang out with him all the time. >> i love it. >> stephen: any subjects not to bring up at your dinner table? other than nancy pelosi and the impeachment. that whole thing. >> there's not a lot of people i would say don't bring up. i just-- what happens to me is i just-- i want to hear something new. remember when people told, like, stories about their day? i want ton stuff like that. like, what happened to you today? what? oh, you weren't ducking b.s. and trying to figure out if the president was telling you the truth or not? thdn you? no! you just had-- i would like to
have at least one day a month like that where i don't have to think about what he's doing. i don't care what he's doing. tonight, let's party. >> stephen: well, i'm hoping-- i'm hoping-- i'm hoping you get what you want on january 22 of 2021. ( cheers and applause ) because the next day he doesn't matter. >> here's the thing. -- i'm hoping everyone is paying attention to what's going on. because if you're not, it's going to sneak up on you in a way you're not expecting. because you have to listen to what this gentleman has been saying. "oh, it would be great to be the president for life. maybe i won't go." all that kind of stuff. you know, you have to be prepared. and the only way you're going to be prepared is if you're paying attention. put the phone down. put the phone down. but the b.s. down. take one day for b.s. but just know, just know that unless you get out and vote,
it's not going to change. it's up to us individual-- it's that-- ( cheers and applause ) you know? and, you know... >> stephen: put the phone down. >> put the phone down. and pick up the book "the unqualified hostess, available now. whoopi goldberg, everybody! we'll be right back with bestselling author ta-nehisi coates. take him all the way back to mount everest. maybe i am. it cannot leave the city. we have to go. yi, are you crazy? whoa! he's magical. this is impossible. woo! everest! i promised to take everest home. and he's not home yet. (paul) (sprintern)at special time it's iphone season at sprint. (paul) switch and get... (sprintern) the new iphone 11 or iphone 11 pro
with amazing all-new camera systems. and now you can get iphone 11 (paul) ...for zero-dollars a month when you trade in your iphone7 or newer in any condition. (sprintern) seriously, any condition! (paul) and with sprint's 100% total satisfaction guarantee you can try out the network and see the savings for yourself. (sprintern) can i get a... [air horn beep] it's iphone season. hey paul, do you love it? (paul) yeah. (sprintern) do you love it? (paul) i do. for people with hearing loss, visit sprintrelay.com. ♪ oooooooooo... ♪ i'll show you something ♪ neeeeeewwww. ♪ i'm gonna make you ♪ moooooove. ♪ i'll show you something, i'll show you something... ♪ ♪ neeeeeewwww. ♪ i'll show you something, i'll show you something... ♪ of certain cancers clater in life.k from an infection, human papillomavirus i knew that hpv could lead to certain cancers. i knew her risk for hpv increases as she gets older. i knew there was a vaccine available that could help protect her before she could be exposed to hpv. i knew.
so i talked to my child's doctor. now that you know that hpv can lead to certain cancers, don't wait. talk to your child's doctor today. performance comes in lots of flavors. ♪ (dramatic orchestra) there's the amped-up, over-tuned, feeding-frenzy-of sheet-metal-kind. and then there's performance that just leaves you feeling better as a result. that's the kind lincoln's about. ♪ did you know you can save money by using dish soap to clean grease on more than dishes? try dawn ultra. dawn is for more than just dishes. with 3x more grease cleaning power per drop, it tackles tough grease on a variety of surfaces. try dawn ultra. ever since you brought me home, that day.
i've been plotting to destroy you. sizing you up... calculating your every move. you think this is love? this is a billion years of tiger dna just ready to pounce. and if you have the wrong home insurance coverage, you could be coughing up the cash for this. so get allstate and be better protected from mayhem, like me-ow.
so get allstate and be better protected from mayhem, the juul record. they took $12.8 billion from big tobacco. juul marketed mango, mint, and menthol flavors, addicting kids to nicotine. five million kids now using e-cigarettes. the fda said juul ignored the law with misleading health claims. now juul is pushing prop c, to overturn san francisco's e-cigarette protections. say no to juul, no to big tobacco, no to prop c.
welcomer of "between the world and me" and "we were eight years in power." please welcome back to "the late show," ta-nehisi coates! ♪ ♪ ( applause ) >> stephen: welcome back. nice to see you again. >> thanks for having me back. >> stephen: now, i've interviewed you two or three times before. >> yes. >> stephen: and of course the thing i've interviewed you before are your works of journalism and your essays, like your book "between the world and me" which won the national book award. those are essays and journalism. now you've written your first piece of fiction, a novel, "the water dancer." it's a beautiful book. as i was talking to you
backstage-- this is my reader's copy back here. i'm about that far into it. so please don't tell me how alen >> no spoilers. >> stephen: no spoirlz, please. >> no spoilers tonight. >> stephen: why did you decide to write fiction? what story can you tell in fiction that you can't-- or what power does that have that nonfiction doesn't? >> the shorter answer is my editor, my agent, said, "you should try fiction." and i did. >> stephen: really? >> yeah, that's actually true, i'm not joking. i wrote a book i 2000, "the beautiful struggle" and when both of them were done they thought i could try this and this took 10 years. this is older than "the world two me." >> stephen: this is 10 years old. >> thi it took 10 years to realy get it right. you hint at something i think very, very important, and that is what are the things that can be gotten across in fiction that
maybe can't be in nonfiction. and this is just for me. one of the things i got at my time working at "the atlantic" where i was able to do some of the most fulfilling work of my career, you could state verifiable facts to people and they would just bounce right off. in my case, i would say, "the civil war was fought over slavery," and people would just say, "no, it's not sm. and you would go and dig up the documents of the people who started the civil war who said, "we're starting this war gauze of slavery sm. and they would say, "where did you get that? who said that?" there was always a way out, even if you had the math. one plus one somehow always equaled three. and when i realized what they were actually resisting were not the facts but the implications of the facts. if they accepted the civil war was about slavery that meant they had to look at robert lee differently, the dukes of
hazards different, and the myths that existed in society would come under question. so it wasn't an actual factual argument. it was an argument of myth. and one of the things i realized is the way to get to that is through storytelling. >> stephen: quickly, to tell the people out there, tell them the basic outlines, without giving away any of the surprises-- and there are beautiful and amazing sort of magical realist surprises in here. >> it's just the story of a black man gifted with this photographic memory, can remember all sorts of details, except those things that are most intimate to him-- in this case, his mother. he is the child of an enslaved woman and a white man who is the enslaver and master of the plantation who sold off his mother. and hiram is in this search like all enslaved people of the period for freedom. and the book charts his journey and his coming to understand that that search is actually connected to many more things and many more people than he
thought, and to his memory, or lack thereof. >> stephen: you say you worked on this for 10 years. tell me about the research that goes into this. because i grew up in the south. i grew up in charleston, south carolina. >> did you visit plantations? is that a thing you did? >> stephen: oh, sure we went to middleton and drayton. it was a field trip. >> did they talk about slaves? >> stephen: yeah... but there weren't, like, examples. when i was a child, there wasn't much... wasn't much pointing at it. it was most like like architecture and gardens and things like that. they didn't talk much about who ground the corn or why the gardens were so fancy, and who did all that landscaping. it was m, look at this sort of cultural artifact that is left over." and a lot of talk about how the yankees burned it down. >> i did that. i went to a number of plantations in the course of research. i went to the whitney plantation in new orleans. i went toont in
virginia, i went to montpelier with the shirley plantation in virginia to get some sense of how folks would have lived. what's happening at a lot of those plantations, not all of them, is they are beginning to reincorporate enslavement and congress the fact all of those resources and those riches derived from the fact from people there who were property. in many ways, the reason why i asked you that question, is that gets back to the whole thing i was talking about with myth. once you acknowledge that the war was about slavery, slavery was a big deal, that plantation looks really, really different. and the people feel coined of different about the architecture. and they have to talk about the architecture differently. in fact they might wonder if they even want to talk to about the artarchitecture at all. >> stephen: when i went to monticello the last time, i heard something that wasn't expressed this way, they were only referring to the enslaved people, not the slaves.
it was a different change of attitude or tone toward these people. slave is an identity. >> yes. >> stephen: an enslaved person is what happens to this person who has has their own singular identity. >> right. >> stephen: hi calls the people in here for maybe 100 pages we don't hear the word "slave. of. >> no, you don't. >> stephen: you hear the word "task." where does that come from. >> if slave is in there, it's a mistake. if i had done this right it would not have appeared in there at all. >> stephen: i've read 250 pages and it only appears three times. >> in my mind, one of the things you have to do as a fiction writer, sucan't write a novel about slavery, even when you're writing about slavery. has to be your slavery. it has to be your picture of it. it has to be your particular thing. because you say the word "slavery" and images automatically come to mind, whether you want to focus on them or not-- for instance, whips, chains, all of that is
immediately what is conjured up. this was a big theme in the novel, i was very interested in how enslavement affected family s. >> stephen: family separation was a huge part of this. were you writing-- was that the focus of this, what it's doing to hi or psychologically doing to all the people who were slaves. is that the theme before our present national focus and our own heartbreak in certain ways about the family separation going on at the border? >> it was. it's one of the oldest-- it was one of the first things i keyed on when i, again, was doing that research and reading some of the narratives. what people mourned about the most was a son being sold off, a daughter, wife, husband. that's where you saw some of the most heartbreaking stuff. and i think the fact that it's resonant with the politics right now is more about the fact that when you want to be cruel to, you know, other people, as a policy, family is often the place where that happens. it's not uncommon, even if some of the earliest examples
but one blows them all out of the water. hydro boost with hyaluronic acid to plump skin cells so it bounces back... neutrogena® and for body... hydro boost body gel cream. so it bounces back... (vo) ♪ the subaru crosstrek. dog tested. dog approved. subaru establishes national make a dog's day. helping hard-to-adopt dogs find homes. emreplenished,d, fortified. emerge everyday with emergen-c. packed with b vitamins, electrolytes, antioxidants,
that's why xfinity mobile let's you design your own data. now you can share it between lines. mix with unlimited, and switch it up at anytime so you only pay for what you need. it's a different kind of wireless network designed to save you money. switch and save hundreds a year on your wireless bill. plus get $250 back when you buy a new samsung note. call, click, or visit a store today. ♪ ♪ ( applause ) devoid of basset .
[ back in baby's arms by patsy cline ] then, it appeared a beacon of hope. ♪ i'm back in baby's arms more glorious than a billion sunsets. we were found. ♪ i'm back where i belong found by the hounds. ♪ back in baby's arms for that many calories you could have 9 veggie chips. these are more chip than veggie. while v8 is a snack you can veg out on. v8 the original plant powered drink. veg up. but dad, you've got allstate.
with accident forgiveness they guarantee your rates won't go up just because of an accident. smart kid. indeed. are you in good hands? we'll take great care of him we get it you got it oh! thank you we're petsmart thank you we're hugging ok i'll admit. i didn't keep my place as clean as i would like 'cuz i'm way too busy. who's got the time to chase around down dirt, dust and hair? so now, i use heavy duty swiffer sweeper and dusters. for hard-to-reach places, duster makes it easy to clean. it captures dust in one swipe. ha! gotcha! and sweeper heavy duty cloths lock away twice as much dirt and dust. it gets stuff deep in the grooves other tools can miss. y'know what? my place... is a lot cleaner now. stop cleaning. start swiffering.
we are here with the author of the new novel "the water dancer." ta-nehisi coates. one of the things that is hinted at for a long time in the novel is a special ability that hiram has, which i don't think i' giving anything away when i say it's a supernatural ability. >> yes. >> stephen: and has any of your work writing for marvel influenced your-- or are there commonalities between your work on "black panther" and your work on this novel. people may not know that you have written for marvel for the "black panther" storyline. >> it's not the writing so much reading of comic books which i started at a very young age. but i think the thing is "a," the supernatural is present in slave narrative. it's present in frederick, w.p..
it was already there-- you're a d.and d.positive guy, right. >> stephen: yes. >> i'm a d. and d. guy, too. >> stephen: "dudgeons and dragons for those who don't know." >> my first game of "durchlons and dragons" was when i was seven. i had some of that in me already, so it was the thing i would be automatically already attracted to. >> stephen: thank you for the book. thank you for being here. don't tell me how it ends. >> i won't. >> stephen: it's nice to see you again. >> thank you so much. thank you. >> stephen: "the water dancer" is available now. ta-nehisi coates finally, some math you're really going to like.
xfinity internet and mobile, each for $30 a month. that equals awesome wifi from america's best internet provider and the best lte on the go. it's the ultimate coverage solution. it's all in the numbers. with xfinity mobile, you'll save up to $800 a year on your wireless bill. you can even get $250 back. don't miss out on xfinity internet and mobile, each for $30 a month. plus, save up to $800 a year on your wireless bill with xfinity mobile. xfinity makes saving... simple. easy. awesome.
click, call, or visit a store today. thiwith the world's firstdo, invisible trailer. invisible trailer? hop in. silverado offers an optional technology package with up to 15 different views- including one enhanced view that makes your trailer appear invisible. wow. that's pretty sweet. that's cool. where'd the trailer go? or, get a total value of ninety seven sixty on this silverado all star without optional tech package or enhanced invisible view.
find new roads at your local chevy dealer. late show." tune in tomorrow when my guests will be renee zellweger and walton goggins. now stick around for james corden. good night! captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org ♪ are you ready y'all to have some fun ♪ feel the love tonight don't you worry 'bout ♪ where it is you come from it'll be all right ♪ it's the late, late show