When James Corden started The Late Late Show, it didn’t take long for it to find its legs. During Deadline’s recent The Contenders Emmys event, the CBS host discussed how his team hit the ground running when the late-night show debuted three years ago.

“I think we felt like we had to,” said Corden. “We didn’t have the luxury of an audience or a fa nbase to stick with us while we tried to figure it out.”

The Contenders Emmys 2018

He added, “We knew if we really didn’t come out of the blocks fast, then it would be a greater uphill struggle than it was known any way.”

The show has been labeled a fusion of a talk show and a variety show — leaning more towards the latter. Corden said he and his staff wanted the show to be different every day, and created segments that differentiated them from others. Those stand-alones, such as “Carpool Karaoke” and “Crosswalk: The Musical,” gained instant popularity with their viral appeal.

Corden said they wanted to have these kind of tentpoles to hang the show on.

:If you don’t have those, you almost entirely beholden to the news cycle,” he said. “If you don’t have things to define your show, all you’ll have is exterior things to define your show.”

Check out the conversation above.