Trevor Noah's 'Daily Show' Debut Was Filled With Plenty Of Political Jabs
Trevor Noah just had the best night ever. The new Daily Show host's debut seemed to go off without a hitch on Monday, as the 31-year-old South Africa native jumped right into the congressional and current events arena with a bevy of hilarious one-liners and John Boehner jokes. Despite looking a bit nervous (filling Jon Stewart's shoes is a weighty job, after all), Noah took everything in stride — and of all the evening's most hilarious moments, it was Noah's plentiful political jabs that seemed to take home the biggest prize, eliciting raucous applause and plenty of laughs from the packed audience.
Opening the show, Noah fondly recalled predecessor Stewart, referring to the comedic host as the country's "political dad" and joking that he would now be functioning as its new adoptive parent.
"I can only assume this is as strange as you as it is for me," said Noah, who is half black and half white. He then added that it felt like the family had "a new stepdad, and he's black," which he joked was "not ideal." It was a perfect jab coming from Noah, whose previous stand up acts have been based on his outsider perspective as both a non-American and a mixed-race comedian.
Noah wasted no time launching into a hilarious politically-based tirade, subtly demeaning the GOP's immigration qualms by joking that he had taken a job that an American did not want. "A job Americans rejected is now being done by an immigrant," Noah quipped, running through the list of famous names who had turned down the hosting gig and blasting the popular right-wing myth that outsiders had flooded the U.S. job market.
The fresh-faced host's next target? Pope Francis — or rather, those that had fawned over his recent papal visit, including a few notable faces from the Hill. Riffing on the waves of excitable coverage, Noah compared the 10-day event to a wild music festival, referring to the trip as "Pope-cella" and "Pope by Popewest." Citing the Pontiff's inadvertently liberal speech to Congress, in which Francis called for more open-hearted acceptance of immigrants and a greater focus on climate change and the environment, Noah joked, "He's like a young Bernie Sanders."
Switching gears only slightly, Noah then spent the next 10 minutes roasting House Speaker John Boehner, who recently announced his resignation from both the Speakership and his Ohio congressional seat. Lamenting the speaker's upcoming exit in October, Noah joked:
No! Why leave now, I just got here! I've got fancy suits and a new set and I just learned how to pronounce your name!
Remarking on Boehner's current political power, Noah added that the speaker had final say on which laws would be introduced on the House floor, remarking, "He's basically the bouncer at Club Congress, which is probably the worst club ever."
Keeping to the Boehner theme, Noah handed the reins over to Senior Congressional Correspondent Jordan Klepper, as the two pondered over the speaker's next career move (together, Noah and Klepper suggested that Boehner could become a "seat filler at a funeral," a "Claire Danes impersonator," or a "professional onion slicer"). Klepper then added that whoever filled the empty House Speaker seat would likely be "extremely qualified," subtly drawing comparisons to Noah's Daily Show takeover.
"Whoever takes [Boehner's] job will probably fall flat on their face in front of the entire nation," replied Noah, pretending not to notice the comparison.
Monday night may have been Noah's first show, but with his on-the-nose political commentary, The Daily Show newbie proved on that, despite the heavy comedic mantle being placed on his shoulders, he had successfully settled in for the long haul.