Colbert’s in HD? So What.

Here’s another “what’s new” in the new year item. My two favorite late-night TV shows are now shown in HD – The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. In case you didn’t know the latter show is pronounced “Cole-BARE RAH-pour”, as both “T”s are silent. From this you might guess that the show is a little different than your average show. While The Daily Show makes fun of how the daily news is covered, The Colbert Report makes fun of, well, The O’Reilly Factor and shows like it.

The character that Stephen Colbert plays nightly is hardly humble or reflective. So with typical bravado, Colbert announced on his January 4th show that the Report was now in High-Def. “My opinions will be crisper, [and] my anger more saturated”, said Colbert. He proceeded to demonstrate that people watching in HD were getting 15% more show. He then chided those who watch in Standard Definition that they didn’t get to see the really cool stuff on either side of the screen. “Nobody tell the ‘Standard-Defs’ about what they’re missing”.

The larger point of this is that going High-Def does mean more picture on your screen. Previously, I was watching Colbert with black bars on the sides. Now I can see the coffee mug and the box of tissues, and it was so worth it paying for that new HDTV. But seriously, The Daily Show and Colbert were two of the final holdouts of the 4:3 screen ratio. Now the only thing that I watch with any regularity that isn’t in a 16:9 ratio is WRC-TV News from Washington D.C. Doesn’t sound like that’s going to change any time in the near future despite WRC having the areas highest rated newscast.

The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
High-Definition Upgrade
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor Economy

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6 Responses

  1. As I was reading your post I couldn’t help but wonder what percent of the people actually have high-def or tvs that support this aspect ratio.
    It is kind of tangential to what you discussed but I sometimes wonder what kind of lag there is between these changes and what percentage of people have the technology to support it. It kind of goes with what Colbert said, “Nobody tell the ‘Standard-Defs’ about what they’re missing”. Not to say that HD tv is a sign of elitism but sometimes I think about how technology creates this gap between the haves and have-nots. Maybe some of this is overblown but, your post got me thinking about that. I know your post wasn’t focused on that but, I’d be curious to hear your thoughts on it.

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