The studio in which The Colbert Report is taped was used for The Daily Show before the show was moved in July 2005 to a new location and reflects the self-aggrandizing nature of Colbert's character, including:

  • Colbert often points out his Emmy and Peabody Awards (from The Daily Show ) located on a mantelpiece behind his guest interview area. This is an ironic reference to Bill O'Reilly , who claimed in 2000 that his previous show, Inside Edition , had won two Peabodys, instead of the George Polk Award which Inside Edition did win in 1994 after O'Reilly had left the show.
  • Colbert sometimes stands next to a portrait that depicts him standing next to another portrait of himself.
  • Colbert's desk viewed from above is a large "C."

Colbert refers to his set as the Eagle's Nest , apparently oblivious that the same title was also used by Hitler to describe his mountain retreat in Germany.

Overall, the design of the set mocks the tendency of some media, particularly Fox News , to prominently feature patriotic symbols, imagery, and colors of the United States. Aside from the opening titles sequence described above, the graphics used throughout the show and the studio itself are saturated with American flags and other patriotic imagery, including an eagle's nest prop placed to the side of Colbert's desk and Bald Eagles shown in many places throughout the show, mocking the pseudo-patriotism shown by many Fox TV Commentator shows.

In an interview with The Onion , Colbert explained that much of the design for his set was based on Leonardo da Vinci 's The Last Supper : "All the architecture of that room points at Jesus ' head, the entire room is a halo , and he doesn't have a halo. On the set, I'd like the lines of the set to converge on my head. And so if you look at the design, it all does, it all points at my head. And even radial lines on the floor, and on my podium, and watermarks in the images behind me, and all the vertices, are right behind my head. So there's a sort of sun-god burst quality about the set around me." [4]

An image of the New York skyline decorates the far wall behind the table where Colbert interviews guests. The skyline is partially obscured by what appear to be a torch-bearing right hand and projections from the sun-crown worn by the Statue of Liberty . This visually implies that the Colbert Report is broadcast from inside the Statue of Liberty's head . The Statue of Liberty is modeled after the Colossus of Rhodes , a representation of the Greek sun-god Helios . If every line in the set extends out from Colbert's head, those lines then metaphorically radiate out from the set through the Statue of Liberty and across America. The extended implication is that Colbert's character views himself as the physical incarnation of divinity, the sun-god. Although this seems humorously over-the-top, secretly believing oneself to be an incarnation of God or the chosen of God is a common aspect of NPD, or Narcissistic personality disorder . A case could be made that several of the pundits satirized by Colbert display many of the telltale characteristics of this condition.




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