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The Fan Files
 Essays

 

Why The Daily Show with Jon Stewart is Better Than Ever
by Kelly
January 11, 2002

It's been four months since the horrible events of September 11. Is it just me or does it seem like it can't possibly have been four months? We have seen many new things these past four months -- both horrible and wonderful -- that will live on forever in our minds. And on television, there have been many new "patriotic" items advertised. Gold-plated coins with Bush on them, firefighters and police officers painted on money, and "Great American Songs" compiled on "exclusive" CDs that "aren't available in stores so call now!" There are people with suits on sitting in a boardroom somewhere saying things like, "Hmmm. You know, Barry, patriotism is IN this year . . . how can we capitalize on that?" It gets under my skin to the point that I literally just want to hit the TV.

What does this have to do with The Daily Show, you ask? Jon is a regular guy in a high position. In Jon's Comedy Central site bio, they describe him as "one of America's top social and comedic voices." I watch The Daily Show every night for this reason. The same things that annoy me these days annoy him too. And he's in the position to say to these guys, "You're idiots, and we all know it." He says what I, and many others, are thinking. And, many times, he says things that I've been thinking but never knew how to say. When the plane went down in Queens I was disgusted with the way they kept showing the burned neighborhoods and speculating -- "Now, if there was a bomb, could that have done this?" The whole time I'm thinking, "Shut the hell up! Move on! Stop rehashing it! When you have NEWS, tell us!" But I' m just Kelly. I can't do anything. I have, at most, an audience of five people to rant to. And then Jon gave me a phrase that summed up what I was feeling was being done to me. "Mind f**ked." (His bleeped words). Right on my brother, that's it exactly.

I guess what I'm saying is that I'm grateful that we have Jon and The Daily Show to speak for us. He has pointed a sly finger at the media. I look forward to the day when Steve Carell does the Ad Nauseum that will appease my anger at all the money hungry corporations that are capitalizing on our revived patriotic feelings. Throughout all this, The Daily Show has shown compassion, a balance of serious and funny, and the right amount of sensitivity and tact. But what I'm most pleased with is their willingness to stick out their necks and poke fun at those who deserve it. When Jon yells at Fox, CNN, and MSNBC, I clap my hands and cheer him on from my couch, 'cause he's saying what I can't. And for that, I am thoroughly pleased.

Thank you Jon, for saying what we all want to say. Thank you for letting us know it's okay to laugh instead of cry. And thank you for keeping me from going psycho. The Daily Show lessens that anger, turns it into annoyance, and sometimes into pure laughter. Rock on Daily Show.

 

Last updated September 2, 2002.


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