Sad news for fans of Jessica Williams’s great work at The Daily Show. According to Entertainment Weekly, Williams is leaving her post at the show, and tomorrow will mark her final appearance after four years as a correspondent. Thankfully, it’s not all sad news, because Williams is leaving to focus on her scripted Comedy Central pilot with Naomi Ekperigin. Here’s what Williams told EW about the project:
I’ve had this idea for a while about a young woman who is a feminist and who imagines herself to be “woke.” I think that a lot of the time, we have this idea that when you are, like, “woke” — and please always put this in quotations! — that you should always have your shit together. But I know that often for me, as a black woman of color, I feel like I’m supposed to represent these ideals and values that I was taught as a young lady. Like I’m supposed to carry myself in a special type of way, but oftentimes I’m, like… I’m still in my 20s, and still kind of a mess. So it’s a show about somebody in their 20s who has all these social ideas, but still does not have it together. [Pauses] And she’s, like, goofy and silly and funny! The main thing about the show is that I’m excited to, in a silly and funny way, be able to explore ideas of feminism and race and LGBT issues — things that I care about and that I talk about on The Daily Show and that I deal with on 2 Dope Queens.
“We see her as a great voice — she’s so dynamic and so funny,” Comedy Central president Kent Alterman said on the news. “And she’s kind of grown up there at The Daily Show. Rather than say goodbye to her for her to go somewhere else, we want to make sure that we’re developing with her so that when she’s ready for her next platform, it can actually be with us.”