On Thursday, August 6th, 2015, Jon Stewart will end his 16 year and five month reign as television’s most influential political satirist as the host of Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.” With less than 24 hours before his last show, viewers’ reactions online have been both heartfelt and dismissive.
But not everyone is sad to see Stewart go.
Stewart first appeared on The Daily Show in 1999 with guest star Michael J. Fox. Fox later told the NY Times, “I knew he was a smart, funny guy. But, I had no idea the weight that he’d carry going down the line.” In Stewart’s first show, he begins discussing Clinton’s impeachment trial in a segment detailed “The Final Blow.”
Throughout the years, Stewart continued to weave the public through the mainstream media’s partisan coverage of numerous political, economic, and social disasters that occurred during his 16-year tenure. Stewart developed clever segment titles such as “Indecision 2000,” to label the 858 hours of coverage the Bush v. Gore Supreme Court decision took. Many people will continue to refer to the Iraq war and the continuing conflicts east of Iraq as “Mess O’Potamia” and “Mess O’Slightly-to-the-Left-O’Potamia.”
This show doesn't deserve an even slightly restless host, and neither do you.Jon Stewart
Specifically referring to the partisan political machine and the rise of hyper-partisanship, Stewart stated “watching these channels all day is incredibly depressing,” he said. “I live in a constant state of depression.” He would later label his coverage of U.S. elections as “Democalypse 2012, 2014, and 2016.”
Stewart stated that Obama criticized him for making millennials too cynical of politics, but that might be what the next generation needs. We should be cynical of the current atmosphere of partisan politics, but that does not mean we do not want to change it. As Stewart put it, “I’m actually skeptically idealistic.”
Stewart explained his reason for leaving is because he knows it is time for someone else. He continued, “This show doesn’t deserve an even slightly restless host, and neither do you,” Stewart explained in February when he announced his departure. Hopefully, Stewart’s successor, Trevor Noah, can fill the void when he takes the reins on September 28 as the host of the ‘Daily Show with Trevor Noah.’
Photo Credit: Salon