One of the little pleasures of John Oliver's stint as Daily Show host is how he opens each night's program with a new reason Jon Stewart is gone for the summer. On Thursday, as Oliver starts explaining that Stewart is off searching for hidden treasure on a map he discovered on the back of the Constitution, Stewart steps in and ruins the fun.
Technically, Stewart Skypes in, beaming his newly bearded face in from the Middle East via live video feed. He assures Oliver that he is doing a "phenomenal job" guest-hosting, before conceding that he doesn't actually watch the show all that much because "it's too weird," like "watching someone have sex with your wife's desk." Oliver razzes him right back, saying he and the rest of the Daily Show family now have weekly softball games with the Mets and weekly concerts from Bruce Springsteen.
Oliver also fesses up on his nightly stories about Stewart being off doing nude modeling or tightrope-walking the Grand Canyon, and Stewart says that's fine, as long as Oliver isn't telling the world that he's hiding in a bunker with NSA leaker Edward Snowden. Later in the program, Oliver returns to Snowden, weighing in on his extended layover in the Moscow airport's mysterious transit zone:
The rest of the episode is dedicated, again, to the Supreme Court. Later in the program, Oliver interviews SCOTUSblog reporter Tom Goldstein, but first he returns to the high court's striking down the Defense of Marriage Act. Oliver focuses on two justices, Anthony Kennedy — who has authored all three of the Supreme Court's major gay-rights rulings — and Antonin Scalia, "the justice whose name most resembles a GI Joe villain," and who expresses his anger to those rulings using colorful words like "argle-bargle."
The second part of Oliver's "America Comes Out of the Closet" segment gauges the reaction to the DOMA ruling from Republicans, and it includes some video of dogs having sex — an image you won't be able to "un-see," even if you want to, Oliver warns. Watch at your own peril:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- The mystery behind China's aggressive push into space
- The best places to find love — and lust — according to science
- How a drafting error could doom Obama's carbon regulations
- How the battle for religious freedom became a nonsensical free-for-all
- Here's the schedule very successful people follow every day
- How to save Meet the Press
- This simple hack for slicing cherry tomatoes will astound you
- Sex can't explain the culture war
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Why GOP reformers are bound to fail
Subscribe to the Week