South Africa’s Trevor Noah made his The Daily Show debut tonight on DSTV Channel 122 and what a blistering start to what should be a great run.
He was funny, self-deprecating, very American and black.
Talking about his choice as host of The Daily Show by creator, Jon Stewart, whom he thanked profusely for giving him the opportunity, Noah said “I don’t know why he chose me…but the job Americans rejected has been taken up by an immigrant…now we can continue the war against bullshit.”
Trevor kept true to his immigrant experience and black heritage while keeping the show deeply rooted in its American context.
Recently resigned speaker John Boehner and Pope Francis were up front and center and were cannon fodder for laughs.
He poked fun at the Pope taking a ride in a small car and then showed an excerpt of the Pope speaking about climate change and the immigrant populations’ contributions to America.
But with Boehner, Trevor showed that though he is half black and South African, The Daily Show is all American. (Let’s wait for the reviews, shall we?) He described Boehner as “Bouncer at Club Congress” and then joked that Boehner’s post Congress Career could see him take up jobs as crazy as “Chief Onion Slicer.” But that was all after he had described the Congress as a place “where everyone has AIDES” in a clear dig at Americans who say all African have AIDS.
Noah kept it black, never forgetting what his skin colour is and nowhere was this more apparent that in his conversation with Roy Wood Snr, Chief Mars Correspondent and his choice of first guest, Kevin Hart who gifted him a box of neck ties.
Speaking about the discovery of water on Mars, Trevor described it as a “new planet to colonize.” Touché!
And then when he said people would go to Mars, Wood said to him “Black people ain’t going to Mars and that includes you, Trevor. These white folks ain’t decided whether they like you.”
The choice of Kevin Hart was a great move. A comic and fellow black man, Hart was a perfect guest; gracious, funny and well, Kevin Hart. After he said he sold out a stadium with 53,000 people in Philadelphia, Trevor Noah joked spontaneously that he once performed before 53 people.
There was a below the belt dig though at Whitney when he made a joke about Crack and Crystal Meth trying to see who was more bad ass “Step up your game, Crystal. You make teeth fall out, big deal. I put down Whitney.”
But above all, he was funny, dead on the punch line and well-dressed to boot.
Welcome to the hot seat, Trevor Noah and good choice, Jon Stewart.