As a foreigner, what’s his [Trevor Noah’s] take going to be on America?
1.5 million viewers on TV and online in the US per episode. Newsweek called the show “the coolest pitstop on television”.
Plaudits aside, there’s a more concrete by-product of Stewart’s tenure, in that he’s revitalised the nation’s youth and affected their political apathy – no mean feat. Indeed, in terms of voter turnout, gures state that the 18 to 29 demographic has steadily risen since 2000, reaching its highest point since 1972. Something that Stewart must take some credit for, despite a constant claim that his show “isn’t journalism”.
In 2010 Stewart and Colbert co-hosted a satirical political rally at Washington, DC’s National Mall, which drew an estimated 215,000 people. The Rally To Restore Sanity And/Or Fear featured Stewart as the liberal counterpoint to Colbert’s fear-mongering, conservative pundit alter ego. The hope was to show how America’s reason-minded are drowned out in the media by a minority of extreme views.
At the end of the rally Stewart gave a rousing speech in which he admitted that the world does have things to fear, but that “we live in hard times, not end-times. And we can have animus and not be enemies…. if we amplify everything, we hear nothing… Most Americans don’t live their lives solely as Democrats, Republicans, liberals or conservatives. Americans live their lives more as people who are just a little bit late for something they have to do”.
His biggest hiatus from hosting duties was a 12-week break in 2013 while he was lming Rosewater, a movie he wrote and directed, about an Iranian-Canadian journalist detained in Iran during its 2009 presidential election protests. The lm, released last year starring Gabriel Garcia Bernal, garnered positive reviews. “Jon Stewart… is maybe due a career stumble,” wrote Guardian lm critic Peter Bradshaw. “I can only say it hasn’t arrived yet.”
“Stewart set out to be a working comedian, and he ended up an invaluable patriot,” says New Yorker editor David Remnick. But that import will now be focused elsewhere. September 28 saw Trevor Noah sit in The Daily Show chair for the very rst time. His ap-