John Oliver Bids Farewell To The Void, Last Week Tonight Returns To Studio Next Month

John Oliver said goodbye to The Void – the little cartoon face that’s been the Last Week Tonight’s sole companion as the show has broadcast remotely during the Covid pandemic shutdown.

At the end of last night’s episode, Oliver announced that, following a two-week hiatus, he and the show will return to the studio on Sept. 17 – with or without a studio audience (that part hasn’t been determined yet).

HBO’s Last Week Tonight has remained one of the last late-night programs broadcasting from, as Oliver has called it, the remote “blank void” outside a studio.

In what looks to be his final encounter with the animated sidekick – eyes and a mouth floating like a ghost onscreen (and voiced by actor H. Jon Benjamin) – Oliver told a disappointed Void that their relationship had reached its conclusion. Reminding Oliver that “Conan got a song” when the TBS host recently signed off (and with a little red Conan wig briefly appearing above the Void’s eyes), the Void broke into a teary ballad about a “grief that can’t be spoken.”

“I’m not dead,” shouted Oliver. “I’m returning to the studio!” To which the Void responded by holding an obscenity-laden flag and a final outburst of irreverence: “Queen Elizabeth had Princess Diana murdered. Goodnight.”

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