I’m not a big fan of the reconstructed Daily Show. I don’t have anything against Trevor Noah or anything like that, it just feels like a substandard show now that Jon Stewart is gone. To be fair, I stopped watching it a couple years before he left as well, so it’s not all Noah’s fault. In fact, I always come away with a positive opinion of the guy when I hear him speak outside his role on the show. In interviews and features, he has a lot of interesting things to say, I just don’t think his comedy chops are quite there, at least not yet.
I also highly doubt he runs the show’s official Twitter account, but hopefully I’m wrong. Yesterday, they caused a storm with this joke…
Celebrate the #SCOTUS ruling! Go knock someone up in Texas!
— The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) June 27, 2016
Yes, this is an incredibly risque joke. Many people wouldn’t tell it and several more would call you a monster for even considering it, but to me it’s funny. Personally, I am against abortion personally and would always counsel someone against getting one unless their health was in jeopardy or something like that. But I won’t lie to you and pretend that it’s one of my core issues. I don’t really care about it that much and I get tired of the constant bickering and politicking over the issue. I think a pro-choice regime with significant restrictions after 3 months would win over the support of most Americans, but we’re a long way from ever getting there, so I just ignore it for the most part.
Also, the main ones so offended about this joke make all kinds of comments about Muslims, etc. Toughen up. https://t.co/n0w9q2B6kV
— Ethan Ralph (@TheRalphRetort) June 27, 2016
(This person unfollowed me over my defense of this joke, by the way.)
But, even if this is one of your top issues, you have to be able to laugh. Or, barring your personal laughter, you shouldn’t demonize a comedy show for taking a risk. The best comedy always pushes boundaries. I can hear some of you now: “Well, I don’t consider this to be some of the best comedy.” That’s fine and it’s also to be expected. Still, even if you feel like The Daily Show failed here, the boundary-pushing should still be encouraged. Maybe this is a hard concept for people who haven’t spent 20 years or so studying comedy to understand, I’m not sure.
To me, there is only one burden when making a joke: Is it funny or not? To me, this passed the test. It’s a tricky burden though, because no joke is funny to everyone. I guess maybe a standard of being funny to a decent segment of the population works better. There are plenty of comedians I don’t find amusing, for example, but I still give them their props because they make others laugh.
I guess just give me your thoughts on the joke above, because I’m running out of ways to talk about it. Oh, and good morning! I’ll be working on the podcast later today, so expect it up by around 12PM EST or so. I might get Ms. Malik’s thoughts on all this as well.