Jon Stewart was out sick tonight with something that The Daily Show correspondent Jason Jones described as an illness only affecting people from New Jersey. Jones filled in for Stewart – a substitute-host gig that was a career maker for The Daily Show correspondent John Oliver back in summer ’13.
This was not that.
Jones kicked things off with a dry-heave gag and a mention that he had just become a U.S. citizen. That segued into a segment about VPOTUS Joe Biden’s recent “gaffes’” – or truth-tellings, depending on your news channel of choice. “Look, we all have friends we think are morons,” Jones said, of Biden’s recent comment about U.S. allies in the fight against ISIS having previously funded the group as part of their campaign against Syrian President al-Assad. Jones called Biden “The Seinfeld of vice presidents” so he could pull out his Seinfeld impersonation.
Jones was then joined by wife, and Daily Show correspondent, Samantha Bee to introduce a taped bit in which she tried in vain to find out how many American citizens are shot by police each year — after which Bee and Jones introduced tonight’s guest together – in unison. Wyatt Cenac, former Daily Show correspondent, showed up to plug his upcoming Netflix comedy special. Jones and Bee interviewed him together.
Jones kicked things off by suggesting the bearded, cardigan-wearing Cenac looked too scruffy for a Daily Show guest. He noted Cenac also has a new comedy album out, on vinyl. Jones held it up — backwards.
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“That’s actually the back,” Cenac said.
“You can’t tell,” Bee replied.
“Way to do the research,” Cenac snarked.
“Here’s the problem: I don’t care,” Jones shot back humorlessly.
The audience made uncomfortable noises.
Cenac, having been dinged twice now – but who’s counting – began to plug Jules Verne’s book Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea. He has not read it, he said, but plugging it will raise his profile on the talk-show circuit. He also gave a plug to something he called “Charlotte Bronte, by Jane Eyre, ” which suggests he also has not read Jane Eyre. Cenac also pulled out a copy of The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne, and the dictionary.
“That was the quickest interview I’ve ever done in my life and I loved every second of it,” Jones said, putting the audience out of its Stewart-missing misery.
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