There are few people alive capable of rendering Stephen Colbert speechless, but apparently Mandy Patinkin is one of them.
The famously intense actor, nominated for a Golden Globe for his role as CIA operative Saul Berenson on the Showtime drama “Homeland,” paid a visit to “The Colbert Report” on Wednesday night. After some chit-chat about Patinkin’s truly impressive Old Testament-style beard, Colbert got down to business, asking whether working on “Homeland” had made him more or less afraid of terrorism.
“I’m not frightened about terrorism,” Patinkin replied. “I’m frightened about the roots of what we call terrorism.”
It was exactly the kind of distinction that drives Colbert, the blowhard conservative character, mad. “Let’s blame America! Go ahead!” he said, rolling his eyes.
Patinkin said that he does blame America, but only to some extent. He explained that a show like “Homeland” does something that the most even-handed documentary can’t: “In the hands of good writers you have the opportunity to present both sides of an opinion equally and that you leave it to the audience to listen and then make up their own minds.”