WASHINGTON (TND) — "What would happen if five of America's top 11 most be-loathed talk show hosts all talked on top of each other for an hour?"
That is the question Jimmy Kimmel poses at the top of the first episode of "Strike Force Five," a new, limited series podcast that features Kimmel alongside his late-night television talk show host colleagues Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, Seth Myers and John Oliver.
The five hosts, who have been off the air since the Writers Guild of America (WGA) went on strike in May, started getting together over Zoom to discuss the strike and cessation of their work at the recommendation of Colbert. In the first episode -- there are now two out: "Five Late Night Hosts Talk at the Same Time for the First Time" and "A Second Episode About First Episodes" -- the quintet detail how they first came together on May 3, the day after the strike was authorized, and also compared their relationship to the late night environment during the 2007 – 2008 writers strike (during which Kimmel and Colbert were employed in the late night field).
The purpose of the podcast, which will run for at least 12 episodes -- in a post on X announcing the podcast, Kimmel said it would go on for as long as the strike continues -- is in part for the five hosts to financially support their staffs, dozens if not hundreds of employees who are out of work as a result of the strike.
The hosts revealed some of their sponsors are alcohol distillers, leading to a humorous story from Oliver about being given some of the sponsored products.
He described how a courier came to his door with a black plastic bag of one sponsor's liquor bottles, which he then carried to his studio for the recording of the first episode of "Strike Force Five." While walking down a street in New York City, someone saw Oliver, "carrying six bottles of premium alcohol," and said, "I didn't know the strike was going that badly."
"I said, 'Yes it is,' and kept walking," recalled Oliver.
The podcast is already being received widely and well, as it hit number one on the top podcast charts for Spotify and Apple as well as the top spot on both companies' "top news podcast" charts.