The Washington Post's Richard Cohen doesn't think so :
Colbert was not just a failure as a comedian but rude. Rude is not the same as brash. It is not the same as brassy. It is not the same as gutsy or thinking outside the box. Rudeness means taking advantage of the other person's sense of decorum or tradition or civility that keeps that other person from striking back or, worse, rising in a huff and leaving. The other night, that person was George W. Bush.
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[I]n this country, anyone can insult the president of the United States. Colbert just did it, and he will not suffer any consequence at all. He knew that going in. He also knew that Bush would have to sit there and pretend to laugh at Colbert's lame and insulting jokes. Bush himself plays off his reputation as a dunce and his penchant for mangling English. Self-mockery can be funny. Mockery that is insulting is not. The sort of stuff that would get you punched in a bar can be said on a dais with impunity. This is why Colbert was more than rude. He was a bully.
Gawker's audience thinks that Colbert is a great patriot, but that doesn't really indicate whether they think the speech was really funny, or just incendiary. And Slate's Troy Patterson thinks Colbert didn't bomb, and in fact, he intended for his speech to make the audience uncomfortable:
Pop Dadaist that he is, Colbert wasn't bombing so much as freaking his audience out for his own enjoyment.
At least Jon Stewart thought Colbert was funny:
"It was balls-alicious," Stewart said. "Apparently he was under the impression that they'd hired him to do what he does every night on television" -- that is, make fun of conservatives, public officials, and the press in the guise of an O'Reillyesque talk show host."We've never been prouder of him, but HOLY ----," Stewart added.
Folks, I hate to break it to you, but humor is subjective. Take these five examples of late-night humor, posted by the Daily Kos:
"Everybody in the government this week is suddenly trying to think of ways to conserve energy. For example, the smoke that blows out of the president's ass when he's talking about this issue is now from clean-burning ethanol."---Bill Maher
"Condoleezza Rice is the most popular member of the Bush administration. Experts say that claiming to be the most popular member of the Bush administration is like claiming you got the 'good' kind of Herpes." ---Conan O'Brien
"Today, of course, was the `Day Without Immigrants' ... Or as the Native Americans call it, the good old days.---Jay Leno
"Mr. President, it is time to hire the folks who've never let you down. Limbaugh at Health and Human Services. Hannity at State. Then give Rummy the Medal of Freedom and install Bill O'Reilly as Secretary of Defense. Only problem: you might find yourself invading Vermont. And I'll replace Chertoff at Homeland Security. The man's done nothing to control the bear population."---Stephen Colbert
"I mean, it seems like every time I turn on the TV these days, I see some ad for some drug I never heard of, to treat some disease I never heard of. That's not a stomach ache you have from eating the chili-cheese fries at Johnny Rockets, it's Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Or I.B.S. Or as I call it, "B.S." Which would also apply to the dreaded "Social Anxiety Disorder." Or as we used to call it, "shyness." And we treated it with an old home recipe: scotch and water."---Maher
Personally, I only think the 2nd and 5th are particularly amusing. But what do I know? Last week I made a joke about genocide. Tell me what you think is funny in the comments section.