Let’s preface this by saying: John Oliver is great. He’s funny on both The Daily Show With Jon Stewart and his refreshing Comedy Central stand-up show on which he hosts actually funny comedians (Fabrice Fabrice!) instead of the dregs found on most of that network’s variety shows. He’s just fantastic. And humble! So, you know, the guy is probably having a laugh himself at today’s breathless profile of him in the U.K. paper The Independent, in which the writer seems to have let his national pride overpower any objective description of Oliver’s contribution (so far) to American comedy and specifically, The Daily Show. We’re 100 percent sure Oliver is not the one who painted this picture.
First, Oliver is described as Jon Stewart’s “main sidekick” on the show the writer claims earns Comedy Central “huge ratings.” While it’s clear that Oliver has a big hand in the show, and some might even say he’s being groomed as the next Carell or Colbert, “main sidekick” is a little strong, and while The Daily Show’s ratings are big for the cable network, they’re not actually “huge,” as many a conservative target has pointed out. But, you know, a writer can be forgiven a little starfucking when his countryman makes it big in America. But then there’s this:
“The premise of The Daily Show is that it is a fake news show with Oliver running about as Stewart’s fake, on-the-road correspondent.”
Okay, relax, Independent writer David Usborne. Oliver’s fellow correspondents Wyatt Cenac, Samantha Bee, Jason Jones, and Aasif Mandvi (who are never mentioned in the entire piece!) would probably like to point out that they, too, you know, exist!
Made in Manhattan: John Oliver on taking satire stateside [Independent UK]