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The Nightly Show kicks off! and other fake news news. January 23, 2015

Posted by Erin Ptah in Fandom.
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A smorgasbord of links that’s been building since December:

A visual guide to everyone in the Colbert Report finale! From Doris Kearns Goodwin to Eleanor Holmes Norton to Neil Degrasse Tyson to Big Bird. And Katie Couric helpfully provides the guest list.

A roundup of forty-nine celebrity farewells to the Report, Stephen, and”Stephen”.

Meanwhile: Olivia Munn has a new contract to develop and executive-produce shows for CBS! She’s done so much good acting (even in bad shows), it’s high time she got an opportunity to write stuff, too.

Jon did an AMA on Reddit back in November; for ease of reading, have all the answers with their questions, in chronological order.

Lewis, Jon, and Kathleen Madigan poke fun at Larry’s tie-adjusting pose. Aww.

___

And with excellent timing, someone on Tumblr asked my thoughts on the Nightly Show, prompting all of this to get typed up.

I like it overall. The scripted comedy bits are solid — a worthy addition to the fake news family. Not every joke hits, but that’s the case with TDS and TCR too. And it’s only their first week! No telling what heights they’ll be able to reach once they really hit their stride.

The panel discussions are weaker. One thing I really love about Last Week Tonight is that it has very few interviews, to let them do fake news straight through. And here The Nightly Show has less fake news, in order to make room for more interviewing. If I wanted to watch a talk show, I have a wealth of those to choose from already….

That said, the “four guests per night, more than one of them black, all with different perspectives” pattern they have going does counteract the pressure of “hey, you, speak on behalf of all black people” that comes up in the media a lot. So given the focus of the show, it’s probably a smart choice. (…she says, as a white person with zero personal authority on the subject.)

And I really appreciate their choices about what to cover. I’ve been wishing TDS would give more airtime to things like the Ferguson protests, but their focus is so broad, and their schtick is to react to whatever is dominating the real-news cycle. TNS, like LWT, has the freedom to be more self-directed, and like LWT, the stories they’re going after are refreshing.

Also: Larry is great, his voice is great, his presence as a host is great, his throwing teabags at that one sexist guest the other day was great. Like Jon and John (and definitely not like “Stephen”), he’s coming across as a smart, thoughtful person who’s using his comedy to poke at harmful things and defend the harmed. Again, it’s his first week, maybe he’ll end up revealing some jaw-droppingly terrible beliefs as his time in the spotlight goes on…but so far, so good.

tl;dr like it, might have attention wandering sometimes during the panel discussions, but unless something goes horribly wrong I will be keeping it in my fake-news-watching lineup and enjoying it.

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