Last week, Daft Punk was supposed to perform on The Colbert Report, only to back out at the last minute without much in the way of an explanation. Thankfully, Stephen Colbert managed to turn it around with a segment that made the web explode with awesome, so I guess lemons to lemonade and all that. However, a lot of people questioned whether the entire thing was a publicity stunt by Viacom or if it really happened. According to Gawker, it turns out Daft Punk actually bailed, so Stephen had some fun at their and MTV’s expense.
Stephen Colbert has shed more light on last Tuesday’s episode-long Colbert Report response to MTV barring Daft Punk from playing his show. On comedian Paul Mecurio’s podcast, Colbert explained that there was trouble with booking Daft Punk from the start — they didn’t want to perform “Get Lucky” or be interviewed (since part of the Daft Punk members Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter’s schtick is that they are robots who do not speak). “I’m beginning to see why they don’t do TV,” Colbert recalled thinking weeks ago, during the negotiations for the proposed appearance.
Thus a plan was hatched: They’d work around Daft Punk appearing but not communicating by airing a montage that included Colbert dancing to “Get Lucky” with various guests (like Jeff Bridges) and in various locations (like the America’s Got Talent set) as a jokey attempt to “convince” Daft Punk to perform their own song. He also enlisted Robin Thicke to perform “Blurred Lines,” thus satisfying Hyundai, which signed on to sponsor his “song of summer” offering. Colbert told Merurio that the montage and Thicke performance were going to be part of the show even if Daft Punk had shown up. They were filmed way in advance of the taping of last Tuesday’s episode, on which he said that he found out just hours ago that MTV pulled the plug on Daft Punk’s appearance. The discovery of said timing caused speculation that the entire ordeal was a stunt to promote the Video Music Awards, on which Daft Punk will be making their exclusive Viacom appearance. Colbert’s explanation refutes that speculation.
I get that Daft Punk want to stay in character and all that, but there’s a difference between committing to a performance and ultimately just being rude for the sake of keeping up appearances. If you can’t be professional enough to see a performance through because you want to keep you can’t be off for a night, then it really doesn’t reflect well on you as a person. As musicians, Daft Punk are great but this was a huge dick move.