Culturally and politically speaking, 2016 has been a rough year for many people out there. The numerous celebrity deaths and the political disappointments alone, coupled with the increasing surreality of daily life, have all added up to one mess of a year, and as it comes to a close, many are still grappling with it. John Oliver already said “Fuck you” to 2016, but now it’s Stephen Colbert’s turn as he, former R.E.M. frontman Michael Stipe and actor James Franco sing an updated version of R.E.M.’s single “It’s The End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine).” Watch the segment below.
In the song, Colbert references numerous events that happened over the course of the past year, such as the death Harambe the gorilla, the Flint water crisis, President-Elect Trump’s “grab ’em by the pussy” comment and more. All the while, Stipe doesn’t seem remotely amused by the song until Colbert slowly coaxes him into singing along with him. At the very end, Franco shows up to sing the “Time I had some time alone” refrain and to encourage the crowd to sing along as well.
“The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” airs weeknights at 11:35 p.m. ET only on CBS.