Colbert on Kimmel Getting COVID: ‘This Is a Broadcast Emergency. TV Is Down a Jimmy!’

“Unfortunately, not all is well in the kingdom of late night,” Colbert said Monday

Stephen Colbert made his return to CBS’ “The Late Show” on Monday night after recovering from COVID, and he was concerned to hear that another late night host — Jimmy Kimmel — has now contracted the virus.

But first, he explained that not only is he, “back, baby,” but he is doing well following his own illness.

“Now, you may have read in the New England Journal of Hot Goss that I had the COVID, and I’m very grateful that I am fully vaxxed and boosted. Feeling fine … Thank you science,” Colbert said. “But still, like I say, COVID is no fun. The first three days sucked and by day 6, I was testing negative, and now, on day 12 I’m back with a serious head cold, so go figure.”

He then quickly addressed the news that broke earlier on Monday that Kimmel was stepping back from his late night show, “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” after — as Kimmel put it — his daughter brought home COVID.

“Unfortunately, not all is well in the kingdom of late night,” Colbert continued. “My friend, Jimmy Kimmel, just announced that he has COVID now. He says he’s feeling fine. He’s fully vaxxed and boosted as well, but still, this is a broadcast emergency. TV is down a Jimmy! Which is why, right now, as the host of ‘The Late Show, I am calling on President Biden to open America’s strategic Jimmy reserve.”

Colbert then cut to an image that showed several famous Jimmys, including Jimmy Carter, Jimmy Smits, Jimmie Walker, Jimmy Buffet and more. (Jimmy Fallon of “The Tonight Show” actually tested positive for COVID over the holidays 2021.)

He also joked that perhaps he was responsible for Kimmel’s COVID case.

“Of course, I’m on the East Coast, Jimmy’s in LA, there’s no way I could have given it to him,” he said. “And yet, I did lick a lot of things and Fedex them to his office. But I only paid for 2-day. Gotta be sterile by the time he opened it. Feel better, my dear friend, Jimmy.”

Watch Colbert’s monologue above.