Science shows ‘Late Show’ fans really wanted Tina Fey for Letterman’s spot

FILE - In this March 11, 2014 file photo, Tina Fey, a cast member in "Muppets Most Wanted," poses on the red carpet at the premiere of the film, in Los Angeles. CBS announced Thursday, April 10, 2014, that Stephen Colbert will succeed David  Letterman as "Late Show" host, but there were other performers who could have been contenders, including Ellen DeGeneres, Jamie Foxx, Fey, Amy Poehler, Louis C.K., Neil and Patrick Harris. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, file)

The dust has settled, a victor has emerged, and it’s all over but the crying—Stephen Colbert is replacing David Letterman as host to the Late Show. We found out CBS’ choice last week, but science recently found out the leading choice among Late Show viewers: Tina Fey.

The Keyhole blog crunched the social media data to find America’s Late Show replacement, using hashtag trackers and word clouds and all manner of other internet-y sounding tools to find the winner. As it turns out, Tina Fey is not only the the public’s Late Show host choice, she’s that choice by an extremely wide margin. Check out the chart:


See that? Fey’s total is more than three times the size of Colbert’s at 32.7 percent, and ten times that of Craig Ferguson’s take. The word cloud compiled by Keyhole shows a similar outcome.

Still, though, we’re getting Colbert, a move that’s been criticized for worry that Colbert losing his conservative-lampooning character from The Colbert Report could alienate viewers. Fey, on the other hand, could have walked out as Liz Lemon and almost no one would be able to tell the difference—or want to.

Luckily, Colbert’s contract currently only extends a five-year run. We still may get a woman in late night yet.