The video: After Bill Maher slammed "The Daily Show" host Jon Stewart for drawing what Maher considers false parallels between extreme liberal and conservative pundits, Stewart has responded in trademark deadpan style. (See highlights from last night's "Daily Show" below.) The Comedy Central star intercut clips of Maher and other detractors of Stewart's recent D.C. rally (Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow) with a parody of Martin Scorsese's boxing classic Raging Bull featuring Stewart taking a slow-motion beating. Then Stewart drolly announced "plans" to stage a new rally on the National Mall this weekend to answer their gripes. He ended on a semi-serious note: "I disagree with their classification of [our message]. But I'm sure we'll all have a chance to clarify it on each other's programs for the next 10 years."
The reaction: Stewart dealt a roundhouse blow to his critics last night, says Ken Tucker at Entertainment Weekly, who don't seem to understand that he's "engaged in media criticism, not political activism." To use his own boxing metaphor, "Stewart remains the champ." None of Stewart's critics are actually contending with the real message of his rally, says Jason Linkins at The Huffington Post — namely, "that the singular excess of the modern media is the way they reflect American life in a distorted funhouse mirror." Watch an excerpt from "The Daily Show" here:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- How our botched understanding of 'science' ruins everything
- 10 things you need to know today: September 21, 2014
- 6 things the happiest families all have in common
- The science of sex: 4 harsh truths about dating and mating
- This is what happens when Republicans actually enact their radical agenda
- 13 Urban Outfitters controversies
- How U2 became the new Nickelback
- California's epic drought
Subscribe to the Week