The Colbert Report prepared the send-off for host Stephen Colbert with a big bang. Celebrities, musicians, friends and past guests all came over for the final episode of the show.
Colbert is set to replace David Letterman on the Late Show next year. Before he goes off to his new gig, he said goodbye to the Colbert Report, which has been on the air for nine years.
The character Stephen Colbert plays, his own alter ego, even earned a spot on Time Magazine's most influential fictional characters list.
The Colbert Report has seeped his way into pop culture. One of his best-known segments, The Word, popularized the term "truthiness," which was even used as a name for a government-funded Twitter listening project.
The night was filled with celebrity guests who all joined in for a big musical number: a rendition of We'll Meet Again by Vera Lynn.
Everyone -- from Willie Nelson to Big Bird, from Kareem Abdul-Jabar to Barry Manilow, and even former President Bill Clinton in a pre-recorded clip -- joined in the number to bid the influential talk show host and 2008 presidential candidate farewell.
One of the most memorable skits of the night showed Colbert doing the absolute impossible: he rendered himself immortal. He defeated Death and, with currents of energy from his newfound powers, he went through his bucket list: "Chicken wings, popcorn shrimp, nachos ... it ended up being a list of things that you can eat out of a bucket," he said.
As the final episode was coming to a close, the camera panned around the near-empty studio, but Colbert was not quite finished yet. Joining him in his last moment on air were Santa Claus, Abraham Lincoln, who is actually a vaping unicorn, and Jeopardy host Alex Trebek.
"We'll always be there for the American people, whenever they need us the most," Trebek explained, despite the fact that he is Canadian with a dual citizenship.
The most poignant moment was shared between Colbert and former boss Jon Stewart of The Daily Show. The two broke out of their satire political host-character and, as Colbert bid his final goodbye, he said, "From eternity, I'm Stephen Colbert. Jon," as he passed it back to Stewart.