Song 349: Stephen Colbert, “Another Christmas Song” (2008)

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Is “Stephen Colbert” (as opposed to Stephen Colbert) the most fully realized fictional character in history? It’s certainly possible, as Colbert has placed his alter ego into as many arenas as he possibly can: politics, Olympic competition, ice cream.

My favorite thing Colbert has done so far is his Christmas special, A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift Of All! The highlight from that special is this song, the spectacularly self-aware “Another Christmas Song,” in which Colbert informs the listener that he decided to join the cashing-in fray and try one of these Christmas songs himself. It’s amazing how carefully Colbert’s supposed laziness is plotted: not only does he include impeccably rhymed lyrics about how the song will be the “heart of [his] retirement plannin’,” but seemingly tossed-together lines like “the manger’s on fire, the holly’s aglow, hear the baby Jesus cryin’ ho ho ho!” It takes a lot of talent to make cynicism sound so delightful.

“Another Christmas Song” was written by Colbert Report writer David Javerbaum and Fountains of Wayne’s Adam Schlesinger. Schlesinger’s always been a witty writer, and it’s fun hearing his lyrics in such a blatantly funny setting. Good work all around.

I tried my damnedest to find a video of this song as it was featured in the televised special, but it seems that Viacom is holding onto it pretty tightly. In the meantime, you’ll just have to imagine Colbert’s insane grin as he dances around in joy.

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