Even so, they, like late-night show hosts, seemed squeamish celebrating, and insisted they take no particular joy in the banquet of material served up each morning, noon and night by the former reality-TV star.
“I don’t want this job,” Nangle joked.
Full Fontal with Samantha Bee writer/correspondent Ashley Nicole Black said she reacts to Trump with a day-long stomach ache, adding that, for the option of poking fun of Hillary Clinton’s pantsuits and policies “I would give anything.”
The panel included no one from any of the broadcast late-night programs because it was taking place on one of the cable days at TCA.
Trump has been a “positive” in that he has put a spotlight on “part of our culture and part of our country that a lot of people did not know existed,” Nangle said, playing into the long-held belief by, say, everybody else, that media would be well served spending more/any time outside of New York, Washington, and Los Angeles.
“When Trump won on television, and everyone was, ‘How did this happen?!’ – this is how,” she said, explaining media “ignored a whole segment of people who feel this way.”
“What satirists can do is… go deeper into that part of country a lot of people did not even think existed,” she told TV critics, some of whom write for outlets in that part of the country.
“This man did not come out of nowhere,” Nangle said, adding, “That has been valuable.”
On the other hand, there is a certain amount of preaching to the choir going on, they acknowledged. “We are not going to put a Full Frontal with Samantha Bee ad on Fox,” Black said, taking up the media talking point that “the real problem with the country is that media diets are so separated.”
But, the writers insisted, they do, when called for, call out MSM Trump love to bash. The panel reminisced about breathless press reports of a previously undisclosed second meeting of Trump and Russian ruler Vladimir Putin at G20.
Late-night writers were not so undie-bunched as, say, CNN and MSNBC, when they learned Trump walked over to where Putin was sitting, next to Melania Trump, at the G20 dinner party. He spoke to Putin for nearly an hour with only Putin’s translator present, Trump having not brought his Russian translator with him to the clambake. “It’s our job to continue to challenge even people we agree with,” The Daily Show writer Hallie Haglund said.
Asked if they make an effort not to be All-Trump-All-The-Time, Full Frontal’s Black said, “It’s tough to do a segment on the impact of a bit of legislation that happened in the distant past, for instance, when Trump’s new White House Communications director just said, “Someone wants to suck their own dick.”