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How Late-Night TV Took on the Redacted Mueller Report

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Late at Night on NBC
Seth Meyers takes a closer look at William Barr’s redacted version of Robert Mueller’s final report. (Published Friday, Apr 19, 2019 ) Seth Meyers takes a closer look at William Barr’s redacted version of Robert Mueller’s final report. See More

Seth Meyers takes a closer look at William Barr’s redacted version of Robert Mueller’s final report.

(Published Friday, Apr 19, 2019)

The Mueller investigation fueled countless late-night monologues and sketches over the last two years, and Thursday's release of the 448-page report was no exception.

Late night hosts Seth Meyers, Jimmy Fallon and Stephen Colbert peppered their Thursday night routines with material from the report, cracking jokes about months of speculation from Washington and the media, parodying the report in song and quipping about its contents.

In his recurring "A Closer Look" segment, Meyers joked on "Late Night" about speculation that Mueller's investigation was "winding down," even as far back as 15 months ago.

"They've been saying the Mueller report was about to come out forever," Meyers said. "In fact, true story, when they found those 20,000-year-old cave paintings in France, one of them just said, 'Is Mueller wrapping up?'"

After Attorney General William Barr's pre-release news conference, the report was delivered to Congress on CDs, which Meyers thought was hilarious: "They got the Mueller report the same way we all got Encarta."

On "The Tonight Show," Jimmy Fallon took a musical approach to lambast the report's 900+ redactions, set to the tune of The Rolling Stones' "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction."

"I can't take more, more redactions," he sang, accompanied by The Roots. "I can't read those Trump infractions. But I try, try to find, what they hide, 'neath the lines."

In his opening monologue, Fallon got into the report itself, quoting Trump's reaction to first learning that special counsel Robert Mueller would be investigating potential contacts between his campaign and Russian interference in the 2016 election.

According to the report, Trump said, "Oh my God. This is terrible. This is the end of my presidency. I'm f*****."

Fallon quipped about Trump's personal attorney: "Keep in mind, Trump says the same thing every time Rudy Giuliani goes on TV."

On "The Late Show," Stephen Colbert took aim at how Barr characterized the report before it was released. Barr was roundly criticized by Democrats, who said he distorted the contents of the report in his news conference and unduly defended the president.

"Now, until this morning, no one knew what was in this thing," Colbert said. "We hadn't read it. Congress hadn't read it. And evidently, Bill Barr hadn't read it either because there's some insane s*** in here."

Colbert also commented on the revelation that White House counsel Don McGahn said Trump asked him to "do crazy s***," a reference to Trump once asking McGahn to fire Mueller in 2017.

Colbert said, "I for one don't know what McGahn is complaining about. He had to see this coming. After all, that was Trump's 2016 campaign slogan."