Stephen Colbert at the 2015 TCA summer press tour

Stephen Colbert took the stage at the 2015 TCA press tour Monday (Aug. 10), where he offered up both hilarious and serious thoughts about taking over “Late Show” from David Letterman.

The late-night host acknowledges he is coming into “Late Show” under the unique circumstance of having previously been on late night solely as a character. But he feels that it was time to put his “Colbert Report” persona to bed.

“I think one of the reasons why I most wanted to drop the character is that I felt I had done everything I could with him or everything I could do with that show, other than have my honest interest in my guest, which is almost constant. And so now I feel actually more freed up,” says Colbert, adding that fans have seen “the real Stephen Colbert” a few times on the “Report.”

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“If you’re wondering who the real Stephen Colbert is, there’s a supercut online of me laughing, me breaking character the entire time. That’s me. I’m laughing at our jokes,” says Colbert, and he’s excited to show that to his new audience.

Colbert also says that he’s been absolutely dying to get back on the air since Donald Trump declared his 2016 presidential bid — which is truly a gift from the comedy gods to the late-night hosts. But for now, Colbert’s had to get by with “dry-Trumping.” Here are seven more reasons to watch Colbert’s “Late Show,” which premieres Tuesday, Sept. 8.

Posted by:Andrea Reiher

TV critic by way of law school, Andrea Reiher enjoys everything from highbrow drama to clever comedy to the best reality TV has to offer. Her TV heroes include CJ Cregg, Spencer Hastings, Diane Lockhart, Juliet O'Hara and Buffy Summers. TV words to live by: "I'm a slayer, ask me how."