The World According To Damien
in a World gone mad – one sane voice emerges…

Damien on… "The Daily Show"

It has been said that many Americans these days get most of their news from Jay Leno’s nightly monologue (U.S. – monolog) and Jon Stewart’s “The Daily Show” – like that’s a BAD thing.

But one suspects that few realize just how valuable The Daily Show IS, as a disseminator of news.

Sure, on the surface, the show appears to be little more than a series of silly, irreverent sketches and mock-interviews, capped by a conventional interview – and hosted by a jester.

However, when one stops to ANALYZE the show, one discovers that those silly, irreverent sketches are actually brilliantly written and finely honed caustic comments on the day’s happenings.

In fact, The Daily Show carries on a tradition of political SATIRE which is HUNDREDS of years old – and whose points have FAR more staying power in the mind than any number of mere RANTS.

And having penned a fairly large number of rants in these very columns, this writer knows what he is talking about. Writing satire is damned HARD.

Then there are those interviews. Have you ever considered how much information on EVERY subject Jon Stewart must absorb, for him to be able to hold his own with guests who are generally experts in their fields?

And just look at how wide-ranging those fields are. Plus, most of them are touting doorstop-sized books. Yet Jon is able not merely to ask a list of pre-prepared questions about that person’s tome – but to expand on questions THEY raise.

In short, he manages, DAILY, to actually READ their huge books. Sure, a battery of researchers could do that for him – but ultimately, all they could give him would be bullet-points and a few scattered highlights.

For him to be as incisive as he is, he has to read them HIMSELF.

Can YOU imagine reading an entire 500-page book EVERY DAY – and then RETAINING enough of it to enable yourself to hold YOUR own with its AUTHOR for six minutes?

The irony is that Fox “News” presenters talk about Jon Stewart like he’s a buffoon – yet not one of them has a QUARTER of either his knowledge or his intelligence.

Long may Jon Stewart and The Daily Show live.


4 Responses to “Damien on… "The Daily Show"”

  1. So, intellectually high-flying Jon Stewart is occasionally correct in identifying some specific stupidity in the places of power? He should do a proper politics discussion program then.

    Years ago, I began to watch his first show with happy anticipation. Within minutes, I was revolted by him and his whooping audience. Over the years, I have kept trying again: no change.

    We get: same-old, self-congratulatory, know-it-all, bendy-trendy mob that, for example, screamed down Enoch Powell as he tried to question the wisdom of accepting occupation of our cities by cruel colonisers selling their ancient product as rainbow nation.

  2. Different strokes, Cy… But if Jon did a “proper politics discussion program(me)” – it would not cull a QUARTER the audience. Comedy is a POWERFUL tool to establish points. I’m sure many said the same thing about TW3, in its day. And the interview portion is more like your proper politics…

    As for that whooping audience – Americans ALWAYS over-applaud. If one edited the applause out of “Oprah” – her show would only last seven minutes (I find THAT unwatchable – so I know what you mean).

    But m’point is, while The Daily Show may resemble a bear-pit – and some of the “investigations” may go over the top – its points are SCORED by people who are much smarter than they appear – which includes our very own John Oliver – an English writer who provides material for (without performing in) a number of English political satire shows.

    And while the morons over at Fox “News” pour scorn on him and his show – they FEAR it. Because even THEY are smart enough to know how DANGEROUS political satire is, when in the hands of THINKING PEOPLE!

  3. TW3 also disappointed me (back when the Big O, and Brenda Lee, flew the charts). Yes, I am an oik, whereas TW3 performers were alleged to be cool. Yes, it took until the burning children picture for me to wake up and see that my beloved USA was making a vile error with the South East Asian war. Yes, I am often an idiot.

    I would LOVE to love FNC (Sky 509) unconditionally, but, yes, only live Los Angeles car chases (not many recently) get me really glued. Yes, the Fox loud-mouths sicken me with their ‘God’ garbage (and the ladies are all bulldozer-jawed stick-insects).

    I just HAVE to put Fox News on my screen-one as a balancer to CNN, Sky News and BBC News on my other three screens. Opra bugs me too. In fact, pretty much ALL Talk shows make me cringe. I only watch Jay Leno to see if a fave movie star is on.

    What really DOES bemuse me is how some viewers manage with only ONE screen…

  4. Yes, I recall from your pix that your living room resembles Mission Control Houston! I think we can put our difference of opinion regarding The Daily Show and TW3 down to the ten year gap in our ages – and the SIMILARITY in our opinions of Oprah and the Fox “News” bimbos and himbos down to MUTUAL GOOD TASTE!!!

    Regarding chat shows, I’ve always loved ’em – but at the moment, the NUMBER of them, Stateside, beggers belief! I mean, all three main networks (Fox isn’t a network – long story) have at least TWO on – one after t’other – EVERY WEEK NIGHT!! That’s THIRTY of the buggers every week!

    Of these – my current favourite (of the ones I can get here in The Land Of Smiles) is good ol’ Dave Letterman. I send the nightly highlights to m’boy in Blighty, as I understand Dave cannot be seen there. Which is a shame, ’cause Dave has been doing it for 28 years now and at 63 years of age has MELLOWED. I think his current World-weary laid-back style would probably suit you!

    Funny, but when I was a kid, I always wanted to be a chat-show host. True fact.

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