Opinion Brief

Jon Stewart vs. Chris Wallace: Who won?

The political funnyman appears on Fox News Sunday, and once again hammers the news media. But Wallace lands some blows on Stewart, too

The video: On Sunday, Daily Show host Jon Stewart ventured into the Fox News den for an interview with Chris Wallace. The heated conversation tread familiar ground, with Stewart and Wallace arguing over the Comedy Central star's place in the media landscape, Fox News' rightward tilt, and the mainstream media's reliance on sensationalism. As he did in the run-up to his "Rally to Restore Sanity" last fall, Stewart insisted that he is first and foremost a comedian — albeit one with an ideological bent — not a pundit or a man with aspirations of higher office. "I think you want to be a political player," Wallace said. "You're dead wrong," Stewart shot back.  

The reaction: Wallace did a "nice job of exposing some of the hypocrisy" of Stewart, and how "he claims to be only a comedian when his media attacks go awry," says David Zurawik in The Baltimore Sun. Stewart didn't have much of a comeback, and got "irritated" and "defensive." Oh, c'mon, it was Wallace who came across as a "huge, silly boob," says Max Read at Gawker. Stewart pointed to poll data showing how chronically misinformed Fox News viewers are, and Wallace rather puzzlingly responded by showing an expletive-laden clip of Pamela Anderson's Comedy Central roast. See for yourself:

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