One of the more fun aspects of "The Colbert Report" are the interview segments the host, Stephen Colbert, conducts with his show's guests. Usually his guests know to play along with the idea that Colbert is a staunchly conservative talk show host, so even if they happen to have more liberal or progressive viewpoints that the host might share off screen, the illusion of intellectual disagreement still exists.
The fact that "The Colbert Report" is a satirical show also allows for it to have on guests of a non-political nature like stars of the entertainment world, and other prominent members of pop-culture. To Colbert's credit he manages to engage pundits, politicians and celebrities equally, getting great material out of everyone who comes on his show.
To kick off 2012, the show has had on quite a few excellent guests which led to some fun or informative moments. Here now are a few of the best guests on "The Colbert Report" for January 2012.
Bill Moyers - Former Johnson Administration Press Secretary and iconic American journalist Bill Moyers made a fantastic appearance on the show. Colbert himself probably best summed up Moyers by calling him "the Reasonable Man's Reasonable Man." During the interview, Colbert and Moyers discussed their differing journalistic styles, but the key to the interview were the salient, cogent points Moyers made about the idea of granting corporations person-hood via the Citizens United decision. It's certainly well-worth a viewing for those moments alone.
David Frum - Frum is a conservative who used to write speeches for President George W. Bush. Some of Colbert's best guests are those that hold conservative viewpoints. What Colbert is often able to coax out of conservative guests is some levity and a sense of humor that some may not expect. Frum's appearance was notable for the fact that he laid out his own vision for the Republican party, and that he indicted his own party for losing touch with "reality" and the "common man."
Maurice Sendak - Yes, that Maurice Sendak, the author of the children's classic "Where the Wild Things Are" among many others. The Sendak segment was an extended piece that the show put on over the series of a week of shows. For anyone who's grown up with Sendak's novels it was quite refreshing and surprising to find what his real personality is like, and to see another side of him. Sendak isn't exactly the paternal, grandfather-like man that so many of us would envision, but he's no less intelligent and informed. It was interesting hearing that from his perspective he doesn't write for children specifically; he just writes what he writes and others tell him that it's for kids.