Defying a new Russian law, Stephen Colbert gave us the gayest depiction of Vladimir Putin we never knew we needed.
“Over in Russia, you know that place that controls our government?” Colbert joked in the video posted Friday. “Over in Russia, Putin is cracking down again because according to the Washington Post, it is now illegal in Russia to share an image of Putin as a gay clown. I got to say, that read on just caught me by surprise.”
Colbert continues to discuss the multiple images that depict Putin’s face with a heavy coating of blush, eyeshadow and lipstick. It’s a common sight at protests, particularly LGBTQ rights rallies. Putin works hard to present himself as an ultra-manly tough guy and his administration is fiercely homophobic.
As our own R.S. Benedict points out, the ban appears to only apply to one image of painted Putin. “As far as we know, this image of a naked Putin spooning with a pregnant Donald Trump is still legal,” Benedict writes. “And this image of Trump and Putin sharing a tender kiss hasn’t been banned yet either. And there are many, many more dissatisfied Russians with image manipulation software who are more than happy to add mascara on their nation’s leader.”
Regardless, Colbert wants to annoy Putin and depict him as gay as possible since we still ain’t Russia. “Because this is America, for now, and we can do anything we want,” Colbert said as he introduced the spoof, “‘The Late Show’ has put together our own artistic interpretation of Vladimir Putin: Gay Icon.”
In booty shorts, a muscular Putin with makeup sings “Supermodel” by RuPaul. At one point, he gets on a unicorn with Donald Trump. Trump holds on for dear life by grabbing his pecs.