Last spring, Stephen Colbert's new hosting gig on the "Late Show" was said to be in jeopardy after ratings plummeted following his takeover from late night veteran David Letterman. One year later and Colbert has been dubbed the new King of Late Night while "The Tonight Show"'s Jimmy Fallon has dropped more than 17% of his viewership. Viewers have made it clear that since President Trump took the White House, they want to see more political comedy on their screens and they know where to go for it.

Late Show's best ratings since Colbert joined as host

When Colbert first took over as the host of CBS's "Late Show," the expectations were huge, as Letterman hosted the show for over 20 years and the feud between that show and NBC's "Tonight Show" in the 1990s was the stuff of show business legend.

However, after the buzz of the first few episodes had worn off, the ratings weren't there and Colbert seemed to struggle to make a connection with an audience that best knew him as the acerbic character he played on his "The Colbert Report" for 9 years on Comedy Central.

For much of 2016, Fallon lead Colbert in the ratings by more than 1 million viewers. Fallon and his team were also familiar with producing short, hilarious bits each night that instantly became viral hits online. Colbert's tenure as host seemed like it would be short-lived, as rumors began swirling that CBS executives were looking to replace him with someone who could bring in viewers for the network.

That all changed 7 weeks ago, or right around the time of the Trump inauguration, when Colbert suddenly had the upper hand with an unmatched political comedy background, both from his own show as well as from years as a correspondent on "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart."

Since the end of January, he has trumped Fallon in the late night ratings, culminating in the "Late Show"'s highest ratings since Colbert became host.

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Last week, the "Late Show" beat out "The Tonight Show" in overall viewers, even though the former was forced to air repeats on both Thursday and Friday due to March Madness basketball. The show's 3-day viewership average was given a huge boost after Colbert skewered Rachel Maddow's reporting of Trump's tax returns.

'Tonight Show' plans more political revamp

Although "The Tonight Show" continues to edge out "Late Show" in the 18-49 viewership demographic that advertisers tend to favor, NBC is said to be planning a more political attack on its competitor. Fallon has been all but ignoring the Trump administration since they entered the White House in January which has not been sitting well with critics, especially following what many thought was a "soft" interview with the would-be president on the campaign trail.

A few weeks ago, PageSix reported that Fallon debuted the new segment "This Week in Words" as a direct shot at Colbert's more political style, in particular a staple of both Colbert's current and past shows: "The Word/Werd."

It would seem Fallon and his "Tonight Show" team may need to up their political game even more if they hope to compete with a political comedy master like Colbert and hold on to the viewers they have left.