New The Daily Show host Trevor Noah dipped a toe into American presidential cycle skewering on his second night out, calling the White House race the ultimate contest to find the “toughest leader, sharpest thinker, and … old person who is best at pretending to like young-people things.” He dubbed it “Panderdemic.”
Noah’s White House Race Panderdemic 2016 segment began with a skewering of GOP candidate Sen. Marco Rubio for having discussed his thoughts on Biggie and Tupac on Fox & Friends. Rubio is just 13 years older than Noah, though Fox News Channel might have made him look much older. Tragically, there never will be a presidential candidate as young as Noah is now, at age 31; you must be 35 to run for POTUS, according to the U.S. Constitution.
Kanye West is only six years younger than Rubio and, at 38, technically is not a millennial according to some experts. But he recently began a bromance with oldster GOP candidate Ben Carson, so who’s counting. Noah had a laugh over Carson thinking a guy who spends his days hanging out with the Kardashians is “brilliant.”
“I love the Kardashians – no, I love the Kardashians!” Noah qualified quickly as his studio audience tittered, lest he alienate that family’s considerable TV-viewing audience. “But I love jokes more.” Noah also suggested the two men might further bond over their mutual homophobia.
In his segment, Noah forgot to mention GOP hopeful Chris Christie is making his Panderdemic 2016 stop by Noah’s show tonight. (That’s after stopping by Fox News Channel this morning. And Christie’s also scheduled to meet privately today with King Abdullah II of Jordan who, you might remember, reportedly picked up the $30K tab for a Christie clan vacation to his country in 2012.)
Despite the previous host’s advanced age, The Daily Show has been a big beneficiary of this time-honored tradition widely believed to have becoming a whole chapter in the Running for the White House manual when the Other Clinton played “Heartbreak Hotel” on the saxophone on Arsenio Hall’s late-night show while running for POTUS in 1992. Daily Show’s biggest audience remains the night presidential candidate Barack Obama visited in October 2008. But the show already had become a presidential-cycle station of the cross by 2004, when Daily Show landed its very first interview with an actual nominee, Sen. John Kerry, who picked the late-night program rather than, say, 60 Minutes for his first national TV interview after the Swift Boaters launched their attack on his Vietnam War record.
Leading up to Noah’s takeover as host, Reporters Who Cover Television were more than a little anxious as to whether Daily Show would continue to play in the national political sandbox, especially after Noah performed for them at the most recent TCA with nary a Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders joke in sight.
Here’s another change to The Daily Show which, in the Stewart era, filed Lena Dunham under BFF of the Show: In last night’s Panderdemic 2016 segment, Noah mocked Hillary Clinton’s interview with Dunham, unveiled this week on the latter’s inaugural feminist newsletter lennyletter.com.
Dunham asked Clinton if she was a feminist. Clinton responded, “Yes, absolutely.” Frame freezes on Dunham’s happy-face reaction to the answer, so Noah can joke, “I haven’t seen Lena Dunham that excited since HBO made its office clothing-optional.” Yes, Dunham’s Girls debuted in April 2012, and yet guys still are snarking about the nudity, speaking of panderdemics.
After establishing that Clinton is a feminist, Dunham asked the Democratic White House hopeful if she’d seen the viral video in which Lenny Kravitz’s pants split during a performance and his “stuff fell out.” Clinton put her hand to her chin and said she would look for it on YouTube.
“Hillary Clinton just made a joke about Lenny Kravitz’s penis – and, just like Lenny Kravitz’s penis, it was impressive!” Noah concluded, seeming to forget he was poking fun at oldster politicians sucking up to millennial voters.