Why is The Late Show with Stephen Colbert not new this week, March 18-22?

 Stephen Colbert on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.
Stephen Colbert on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

If Stephen Colbert's monologues don't seem as timely this week there's a reason for that, as The Late Show with Stephen Colbert is not airing new episodes from March 18-22 on CBS. Instead reruns are scheduled to run at the show's usual time, 11:35 pm ET/PT on CBS, Monday through Wednesday, though some viewers may not get any episode of The Late Show on either Thursday or Friday.

To put everyone at ease, there's nothing to indicate this is health related like Colbert's extended absence in November and December of 2023, when the host suffered a ruptured appendix. This looks like a fully planned break for the talk show, likely because of the 2024 March Madness college basketball tournament.

With tournament games airing on CBS starting on Thursday, March 21, the basketball action is likely to eat into when The Late Show would normally air. The last game airing on CBS on both Thursday and Friday is scheduled for 9:40 pm ET/6:40 pm PT (though it’s entirely possible the games could start later). East Coast viewers aren't likely to get The Late Show then at all on Thursday or Friday; those in different time zones should still get reruns barring the games going way longer than expected.

It hasn't been confirmed by CBS at this time, but this could be a multiple week break for The Late Show, as March Madness games will once again take place Thursday and Friday the week of March 25-29 that could impact Colbert from hosting new episodes.

CBS's other late night program, After Midnight, is also going to be airing reruns for the week of March 18-22. Meanwhile, primetime shows on Thursday (Young Sheldon season 7, Ghosts season 3, So Help Me Todd season 2, Elsbeth) and Friday (S.W.A.T. season 7, Fire Country season 2, Blue Bloods season 14) are also not airing new episodes this week.

Should you find yourself up and watching The Late Show this week anyway, here are the guests that are featured on the reruns:

Monday, March 18

  • Chris Hayes

  • Carrie Preston

  • Original airdate February 28

Tuesday, March 19

  • John Oliver

  • Performance by Killer Mike

  • Original airdate February 12

Wednesday, March 20

  • Billy Joel

  • Performance by Chappell Roan

  • Original airdate February 15

Thursday, March 21

  • Matt Damon

  • Danielle Pinnock

  • Original airdate February 13

Friday, March 22

  • Rebecca Ferguson

  • Denis Villeneuve

  • Original airdate February 29

You can also watch other past episodes of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert on Paramount Plus.