Late night hosts across the Pond in America have never really been ones to shy away from the events of the world, making their feelings known and being famous for their no-nonsense attitude towards them. Given the recent events in Charlottesville, late night hosts across all networks – such as Stephen Colbert, Seth Meyers, Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel, James Corden, and John Oliver – rallied together to call out the President.
Each show is different, and each host has a unique way of bringing issues to light revolving around the President. Stephen Colbert has made no secret of his dislike for President Trump, and this often comes to the forefront during his opening monologue. For example, the hashtag ‘#firecolbert’ was trending on Twitter earlier this year after Stephen Colbert unashamedly called out Donald Trump when he insulted CBS newsman John Dickerson. Colbert came under fire from viewers and was briefly investigated by the FCC for saying that the only thing that Trump’s mouth was good for was being “Vladimir Putin’s c**k-holster.” The joke prompted thousands of complaints, with the majority of the objections noting the homophobic tone and the vulgarity of the language used during the May 1st episode of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.
It was not the first time, nor would it be the last time that Colbert went after President Trump. In the wake of the events in Charlottesville this past week, Colbert once again lead the charge against the POTUS, alongside Seth Meyers. Colbert tore the President down, ending one monologue with a Trump-specific zinger. Trump remarked, ‘If the press were not fake, and if it was honest, the press would have said what I said was very nice.’ After showing the clip, Colbert fired back, “And if you were a better president, you would have said something nice. But you’re not. Hypotheticals are fun.”
“Nazis are like cats. If they like you, it’s probably because you’re feeding them.”
Late Night with Seth Meyers host Seth Meyers opened his monologue after Trump’s press conference by saying that there was only one way to describe it; “clinically insane”. Trump failed to condemn neo-Nazis and white supremacists, blaming leftists for the violence over the weekend, and defended the anti-Semitic rally that took place in Charlottesville. Meyers went on to fire quip after quip based on the President’s unhinged press conference. When Trump asked reporters at his press conference “Where does it stop?” in relation to the taking down of Confederate statues, Meyers responded with “Where does it stop? Buddy, we have been asking ourselves that question since January.”
HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver has become infamous for its longer pieces and monologues, allowing British comedian John Oliver to bring his traditional British grump and ranting to the American late-night scene. Oliver has become famous for his pursuit of Donald Trump, unrelenting in his quest to expose Trump to the United States, and the entire world. Oliver has also made no secret of the fact that he is not a Trump fan, considering almost every decision he’s ever made regarding major legislation. In the aftermath of the events in Charlottesville and seeing former KKK Grand Wizard David Duke confirm that they are marching to push the agenda of President Trump, John Oliver compared the marching neo-Nazis to cats. “Nazis are like cats. If they like you, it’s probably because you’re feeding them.”
Hosts across the Pond have become increasingly political in recent months, tackling issues relating to Trump’s failed healthcare bill, failed travel ban and lack of progress on the Mexican border wall. The President’s failure to deliver on any of his major promises that he cited during his campaign has not gone unnoticed in the world of late night, and the world is beginning to notice what late night is saying.
“Donald Trump’s basically an asteroid headed towards the Earth, but it’s shaped like a penis.”
As a journalist myself, it is becoming more and more enjoyable watching late night shows rip into the President. Whilst I would like to see a more stable political environment in America, part of me is also enjoying witnessing the President being called out for his lies and clear twisting of the truth in press conferences, tweets, and even early campaign rallies. His incoherent ramblings have given the press increasing amounts of fuel for the media fire against him, which President Trump then uses to whip his conspiracy-loving followers up into a frenzy.
The paradox of Trump for me is this; the prospect of him being one of the most powerful men in the world frightens me, but I know he’ll make me laugh in a way that I feel like I shouldn’t. As Daily Show host Trevor Noah recently put it, “Donald Trump’s basically an asteroid headed towards the Earth, but it’s shaped like a penis.”.
When he calls the press “fake news”, my blood begins to boil. These are people who work hard and research the facts, to inform the public. If he can’t accept that his inauguration crowd wasn’t the biggest, or his electoral college win wasn’t the largest, then perhaps the press and late night should continue to call him out for the petulant child he really is, and watch as the rest of the world laughs on.
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