Speed Reads

Late Night Tackles coronavirus

Late night hosts struggle to find jokes in the surprisingly good COVID-19 vaccine news

"We've now been in lockdown for over 11 months and if you're beginning to get the crazy feeling that isolation is starting to drive you crazy, you're not crazy — you are crazy," Stephen Colbert said on Wednesday's Late Show. Yes, according to CNN, "pandemic paranoia is a real thing — or is it? Who paid you to say that, CNN? How would you know I'm paranoid — are you watching me?"

Now, "one guy who actually has a really good reason to be paranoid" is Rudy Giuliani, who's "running like a frightened toddler" from a $1.3 billion defamation lawsuit, Colbert recounted with some glee. But when it comes to COVID-19, "we got another injection of positive vaccine news today," with the Johnson & Johnson getting the FDA's near-approval. "That's amazing, soon we'll have as much choice in vaccine brands as we do flavors of Mountain Dew," he joked. "Unlike the ones currently out there, Johnson & Johnson's is single shot — although the company itself still requires a double Johnson."

The Tonight Show's Jimmy Fallon had a musical comparison between the various COVID-19 vaccines.

"The FDA has just approved a third vaccine," James Corden said at The Late Late Show. "Isn't that great? Now there's three vaccines none of us can get. Here's an added perk: Since it's Johnson & Johnson, it doesn't sting if the vaccine gets in your eyes." But "there's another reason to be optimistic about the vaccine logjam breaking soon," because Pfizer and Moderna say they will have 140 million doses over the next five weeks, he added. "We're so close, guys, to being back in restaurants ... I can feel myself pretending I only want to take a look at the dessert menu."

"We're all itching to do normal things again, it doesn't matter what it is," Seth Meyers said at Late Night. "I'd give anything to wait in line at the DMV and get yelled at by a clerk for asking to borrow a pen."

"Predictions for when we'll return to normal range from April to summer to fall to Christmas to next year," Meyers said. But new studies suggest "the vaccines don't just prevent you from getting sick, they prevent you from spreading the virus, too. If that all ends up being true and we don't screw things up, we could potentially have a normal-ish summer." Watch his uncharacteristic optimism and brief nostalgia for imitating Trump below. Peter Weber