There were some bumps in the first couple of episodes of Stephen Colbert's "Late Show," but Thursday's interview with Vice-President Joe Biden made a powerful case for why Colbert can be both different and great as a traditional late night talk show host. Though there were some light moments, the bulk of it was very serious, as these two men — who clearly have great affection for one another — discussed their faith, the similarities in their upbringing, the tragedies each of them has endured, and their different memories of Biden's late son Beau. It was a genuine, powerful conversation, and the type that Colbert obviously would have been happy to carry on for several more hours.

Biden's a special case, as few politicians or celebrities are as unfiltered, and few check as many boxes of Colbert's own interests. Still, this was special, and the kind of thing that would have been much harder to accomplish with "Stephen Colbert."

Here's part 1:

And here's part 2:

Alan Sepinwall has been reviewing television since the mid-'90s, first for Tony Soprano's hometown paper, The Star-Ledger, and now for HitFix. His new book, "TV (The Book)" about the 100 greatest shows of all time, is available now. He can be reached at