TIME Television

Bill O’Reilly Reacts to the End of Stephen Colbert’s Pundit Character

Bill O'Reilly
Paul Drinkwater / NBC / Getty Images Talk show host Bill O'Reilly during an interview on 'The Tonight Show with Jay Leno' on Nov. 18, 2013

A real conservative pundit reacts to a fake pundit's impending demise

Correction appended, April 10 5:25 pm

Stephen Colbert’s taking of the post-Letterman Late Show reins will be a new beginning for that show — and the end of the character Colbert made famous on The Colbert Report. In the April 10 announcement that the Comedy Central host would be moving to CBS, Colbert made it clear that he would be leaving behind the conservative pundit persona for which the show is known.

The real pundit Bill O’Reilly has been what TIME’s James Poniewozik calls the “not-so-secret inspiration” for faux-Colbert’s on-screen attitudes — but, if his reaction to the latest news is any indication, at least he’s got a sense of humor about that dubious honor.

In a statement to TIME, here’s what O’Reilly had to say about the Late Show news: “I hope Colbert will consider me for the Ed McMahon spot.”

Correction: The original version of this story misstated the name of David Letterman’s late-night show. It is the Late Show with David Letterman.

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