John Oliver's Last Week Tonight is on hiatus for the holidays, and that's a real shame. Sure, Oliver probably wants to spend some time with his family or fly back to the old country and enjoy some figgy pudding. But what about good cheer for the rest of us? There's got to be someone to address the Christmas craziness this month — not to mention Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or New Year's insanity. John Oliver could make the greatest Christmas episode ever given all the material. Besides, given that we have to endure Christmas shopping, seeing the in-laws, and beginning our resolutions in the weeks to come, what business does he have going on break?
He is ignoring us when we most need a break from peace, joy, and togetherness. Our general collective hypocrisy during the holidays could be material enough, but there are plenty of holiday topics to hone in on, too. Sure the politicians are on break, removing one easy target of ridicule, but we Americans are pros at confusing the meaning of Christmas, commercializing it, or excluding others during the holiday celebrations. I maintain that a holiday episode can be done. Maybe we'll be lucky — after all, last year he released a New Year's webisode. Let's cross our fingers, because I think we can all agree that "Silent Night" was not meant to apply to Sundays from 11 to 11:30 p.m. ET.
Those Red Starbucks Cups
People are incensed over red Christmas cups. Where's Christ, sure, but maybe the bigger question is why there are no Starbucks in the Vatican or even Italy? Outrageous! Oliver could fly to Italy with a sleeve of red holiday cups and try give the Pope a pumpkin spice latte. Maybe the Christian right can't bring Christianity to Starbucks, but you can bet on John Oliver bringing a Starbucks to the Vatican.
Krampus Invading Theaters
Cups are really the least of Christian Christmas enthusiasts' problems. There's an anti-Christmas demon that's been released at theaters nationwide. It's attacking everything in its way (except for the last Hunger Games film, which continues to win at the box office). While the horned beast tends to punish naughty children, America is home to Hollywood. Surely some creative license can be taken. Oliver could push the creature to punish children's toys like Barbies or toy guns.
Guns On Christmas Cards
Sure, Christmas cards tend to be ridiculous. Tacky sweaters or reindeer antlers on the dog or baby have become all too common. But assault weapons? One state representative from Nevada took her family holiday picture with a firearm — or five — too many. Assemblywoman Michele Fiore of Las Vegas stood up for her choice even after the San Bernardino shootings because "its [sic] time Americans begin protecting America," she wrote in an email to CNN. Oliver could explore the endless things that make more sense to include in a holiday picture, like coal, Starbucks cups, or refugees being given the last room in the inn.
Putting "Christmas" Back in "Christmas Tree"
One New Jersey town had the audacity to change the name of the town's holiday tree lighting ceremony from "A Tree Lighting" to "A Christmas Tree Lighting." The switch had one member of the local council up in arms. Roselle Park councilwoman Charlene Storey resigned in protest, then later rescinded her resignation when she was offered the job heading up a religious diversity committee in the town of 13,000. The name had excluded Christmas since at least the '90s and Storey said it was wrong to insert religion into the public event. Oliver would barely need to write any jokes.
A 1 Percent Christmas
No white elephant gifts or $5 Secret Santas for the super rich. The New York Post reported that the top 1 percent are gifting $1,500 bottles of California wine and flying to the Caribbean to celebrate the holiday. Hermes bags and Christian Louboutins are under the tree on Christmas morning. Oliver could convert himself in the ghost of Christmas present and confront some rich shoppers about what they're doing for the poor this holiday season.
These could more than fill a 30-minute episode, let alone a webisode. Let's hope Oliver hears the call. Just like the figgy pudding, "we won't go until we've got some" more of Last Week Tonight.