Things have been difficult lately. Regardless of your political affiliation, you've probably undergone a decent amount of stress this year over something that's happened in America. And things can sometimes be even more difficult for journalists who by nature are required to report on these events and inform the rest of the public about the details of what's going on. Luckily, the Last Week Tonight host has offered some relief in the form of... zebras. John Oliver encouraged viewers to "just add zebras" into the news — as in, people dressed in zebra costumes — and the results are just the thing to get you through this week.
The origin of this idea comes from a Bolivian program to get cars to slow down when driving. It's a current iteration of a past Colombian program that used mimes to tease drivers when they were breaking traffic laws. Now, people in zebra costumes go into traffic and interact, talk, or dance with and around drivers to get them to pay attention and drive safely.
It's a super compelling idea, and Oliver decided to take it and twist it into a fun way to get our minds less focused on the negative parts of the news and on to happier things... aka a dancing zebra. Last Week Tonight filmed a 25-minute video of someone dancing in a zebra suit in front of a green screen that people can actually insert into other videos or pictures.
The results, as many of Oliver's other great lighthearted ideas (remember Oliver's piece on Trump, "Make Donald Drumpf Again"?), are hilarious and effective. People have gone wild adding zebras to stressful or awkward political situations, or to just make an awkward moment even better.
1. In The Oval Office
Can the zebra take a turn as president?
2. In A Meeting With Trump
Trump would probably refuse to shake the zebra's hand like he appeared to do to German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
3. During A White House Press Briefing
The zebra sure spiced up Spicer's tie.
4. At The House Intelligence Committee's Russia Interference Hearing
It really lightens up the whole mood of the long hearing to have the zebra sitting there.
5. To Donald Trump's Ice Bucket Challenge
It's an old video that has aged really well, and the dancing zebra just makes it better.
6. In Donald Trump Jr.'s Awkward Photo Shoot
If you didn't think Don sitting on a tree trunk in the woods could get weirder, here you go.
7. At Trump's Press Conference With Theresa May
May invited Donald and Melania Trump to meet with the Queen in England, and the zebra held up a warning sign, suggesting that this is not going to go well.
8. Trump's Inauguration
If only the zebra could have swooped in and saved the day...
9. Trump And Merkel's Awkward Exchange
The zebras make it slightly less painful to watch.
10. Trying To Stop Another One Of Trump's Bad Ideas
The stop sign really communicates everything.
11. On Sean Spicer's Shoulder
Watching Spicer try to control the press briefing with a zebra dancing on his shoulder is second to only Melissa McCarthy's impression of him.
12. While Trump Tries To Talk About Uranium
It's easier to realize Trump doesn't know what he's talking about when there is a zebra to distract from the moment.
13. During James Comey's Testimony
The seriousness of the House Intelligence Committee's hearing on Russian interference in the election gets a little lighter with a dancing zebra in the background.
14. When Talking About Budget Cuts For Meals On Wheels
Sad news is a little less painful when there's a zebra reading a newspaper.
15. During Trump's Press Conference About Germany
Bored zebra speaks for most of us.
16. Making A VERY Scary Event Less Horrifying
So, children are dancing around and singing about Trump's strength? Add a zebra to the mix.
There were also some non-political moments enhanced by zebras.
17. The Viral BBC Baby Interruption Video Gets An Upgrade
Instead of children running in, there are zebras. Perfect.
18. Zebras In Mariah Carey's NYE Performance
Mariah Carey may have had a tough performance, but at least the zebras save the day in this video.
19. The Infamous Oscars Mix-Up
When there's really nothing else to say, just add a zebra.
20. Even Oliver Got The Zebra Treatment
He already made a complicated subject easier to look at, but the zebra certainly is entertaining.
We all know that more stressful and depressing news will be coming in the future, but it's nice to know that Oliver is also worn out by it and is coming up with fun ways to deal with the new reality of life in America.