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Who Can Succeed Jon Stewart? A Look at the Candidates

February 11, 2015 in Blogs

By Lanre Bakare, The Guardian

In the right light, Amy Schumer, John Oliver, Ricky Gervais, Amy Poehler and others (or no one) can all seem like Daily Show contenders.

Amy Schumer. Schumer is arguably the most natural fit to replace Stewart. She’s had a hugely successful show on Comedy Central (Inside Amy Schumer), her act revolves around playing with left-leaning topics (gender politics, discrimination and objectification) and she manages to pull in an almost equal amount of male and female viewers. She’s also in the new Judd Apatow film Trainwreck, which has a work-in-progress screening at SXSW, and that could push her brand into the US mainstream for good. Whether she really wants to commit to a four-day-a-week show that grinds up political news and repackages it satirically is another matter.

John Oliver.Probably the most successful Daily Show alum after Colbert, Oliver has taken his pithy, witty and incredulous British shtick over to HBO and managed to create what is effectively a weekly version of The Daily Show. He ably covered for Stewart on The Daily Show in 2014 and would be more than capable of picking up the mantel and continuing to riff on political idiocy four times a week. The big stumbling block for him coming back is HBO. The cable giant has made Oliver a staple of its political coverage, in which he serves as a more distinctly left-leaning and politically correct foil to the cranky and more volatile Bill Maher. He also may just prefer the weekly format: he turned down the chance to take over from Craig Ferguson on CBS’s 12.30am slot, instead opting for HBO. But the chance to take over the most anticipated satirical late-night spot (one where he has clear links and history) may prove too good an opportunity to turn down.

Ricky Gervais. Some early reports have mentioned the British comedian as a possible replacement for Stewart. A cursory look at his background may have had many scratching their heads as to why a comic who is known for pushing the boundaries of good taste and hasn’t done any form of political satire would be a …read more


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