Sometimes, a Lord Of The Rings reference can explain what you're trying to say better than the most eloquent of monologues. The Late Show host of CBS has never been one to mince words, and on Monday, he certainly didn't hold back: Stephen Colbert compared Rudy Giuliani to Gollum in the creepiest comparison yet to showcase the trail of flip-flopping comments by President Trump's lawyer.
It's no surprise that Colbert alluded to J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings; the bespectacled host's love of the epic fantasy has been proven frequently in interviews. Peter Jackson even declared Colbert to be the world’s biggest Tolkien fan, Nerdist reported. Colbert has been known to discuss The Lord of the Rings with his audience before the show, but this time, he incorporated it into the show, weaving his political analysis into one of the most tortured characters in the fantasy — the gangly, stringy-haired Gollum. Just as Gollum agonizes over whether to trust the hobbits Frodo and Sam, Giuliani similarly seems to go back and forth over Cohen.
In the spoof, which simply begins with the introduction, "And now, Rudy Giuliani versus Rudy Giuliani on Michael Cohen," Giuliani is Gollum as the creature ping-pongs back and forth about Trump's former fixer and attorney Michael Cohen.
The whiplash conversation starts with Gollum staring into a pool of water at his reflection. "I like Michael Cohen," Gollum says in poorly-dubbed voice-over, only to see Giuliani's face responding, "The man is a liar, a proven liar."
The back-and-forth goes on, as Gollum replies, "Michael's not going to lie; he's going to tell the truth." Giuliani immediately shoots back, "There's nobody that I know that knows him that hasn't warned me that if his back is up against the wall, he'll lie like crazy because he's lied all his life." The bit continues on like that, showing an internal struggle as Gollum changes his mind every few seconds.
According to the Huffington Post, Giuliani called Cohen an "honest, honorable lawyer" in May. But then, this past Sunday, Giuliani branded Cohen "a pathological liar" during an interview with Fox News anchor Chris Wallace.
Giuliani reportedly said his change in belief came from the discovery that Cohen had been secretly recording his clients, which made headlines after the FBI seized more than 100 tapes related to President Trump, including one of him speaking with Cohen about a payment to ex-Playboy model Karen McDougal. The model alleges that she had an affair with Trump years before his presidency.
“Obviously if I knew that, I never would’ve said he was a reputable lawyer,” Giuliani said in the interview. “I would’ve said he was a scoundrel.”
Giuliani claims he knew "nothing bad" about Cohen until the news of the tapes came out in the past couple of weeks.
The Late Show skit ends with Gollum trying to convince his alter ego that, "The man is an honest, honorable lawyer." But Giuliani's final words back are "There's no way you're going to bring down the president of the United States on the testimony, uncorroborated, of a proven liar."
At the end of the video, Gollum jumps away while flinging his limbs every which way, proclaiming, "Make America great again!" It might not be the most graceful way to end the skit, but then again, nothing about this political scenario has been.