James Corden Just Totally Ripped Off ‘Pee-wee’s Playhouse’ (Video)

And Reggie Watts doesn’t quite get how “Secret Word” should be played

Last Updated: February 4, 2021 @ 7:50 AM

If you ain’t cheatin’, you ain’t tryin’. James Corden tested out that philosophy Wednesday on “The Late Late Show,” when he decided to just blatantly “steal” the “Secret Word” bit from Pee-wee Herman’s (Paul Reubens) “Pee-wee’s Playhouse.”

Of course, the whole thing was played for laughs and not a genuine heist.

“You know what I was watching last night? I haven’t watched it in so long. I was watching ‘Pee-wee’s Playhouse,'” Corden set the gag up. “When was the last time you watched ‘Pee-wee’s Playhouse? I was watching it and I thought, we should just straight-up steal — we should steal — some of their ideas. It was 30 years ago, it was on CBS — who’s gonna stop us? We’re not gonna get a cease & desist from ‘Pee-wee’s Playhouse,’ and if we do, we’ll just cease.”

With confetti cannons loaded and special lighting at the ready, Corden asked bandleader Reggie Watts to choose the “Secret Word” that, when uttered by Corden, would set off an epic celebration. It didn’t take very long, because Watts sucks at this setup.

Cut to: breakdancers doing their thing in animal costumes and the band going bananas.

“Wow! That was quick!” Corden said.

It then happened like three more times in 90 seconds.

“We cannot sustain the budget,” Corden, who originally envisioned this bit going on for “weeks,” said.

How is that possible, you ask? Watts chose the word “the” as the secret word.  OK Reg, so that’s a word, but…

“That cannot be it, Reg,” Corden said. “That’s a word that I need to say all th–“

He then went with “a lot” instead of “the.”

“Secret word needs to be less common,” Corden managed. “You need to change word, to word I say less, during show we make.”

He then accidentally went “double secret word” on the studio.

Watch the video above.

Earlier on Wednesday, Corden was nominated for a Golden Globe award for his role in Ryan Murphy’s “The Prom.”