No more ‘stupid pet tricks’: How coronavirus changed James Corden’s late-night style

James Corden has been hosting "The Late Late Show" remotely since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the latest episode of The Times’ TV podcast, “Can’t Stop Watching,” host and staff writer Yvonne Villarreal asks “The Late Late Show” host and “Carpool Karaoke” impresario James Corden how the COVID-19 pandemic has changed his approach to his (now-remote) variety show:

When I took the job, my frames of reference were like Jimmy Fallon doing lip-sync battles, Jimmy Kimmel getting people to read mean tweets and shots of David Letterman covering himself in Rice Krispies and being lowered into a giant bowl of milk or doing like stupid pet tricks and I was like, “Yeah, I can do this.” ... I’m fundamentally, at my core, a performer, writer, and I really love making people laugh. That’s been a challenge in this, but the thing I’ve really, really, really loved is having our deeper, one-on-one conversations. The conversation we had with Dr. Michael Eric Dyson was profound and beautiful. Our interview with Joe Biden, again, I’m very proud of it. Talking with Nancy Pelosi. Talking with Gov. Gavin Newsom. Talking with all of these people, I’ve really, really enjoyed.

Listen to the full episode to hear how Corden adjusted when remote tapings began, balancing his good fortune with the need to complain and what he’s learned about himself in five years as “Late Late Show” host. Plus, check out our recent conversations with “Curb Your Enthusiasm’s” J.B. Smoove, “Mrs. America’s” Uzo Aduba and more.