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YMMV / The Daily Show with Jon Stewart

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  • Awesome Music:
    • Done for comedy in the "Tiger Woods Newzak" segment on 12/2/09 certainly qualifies for setting the questions to an elevator-music version of "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen.
    • All of Jon's West Side Story-inspired oil slick songs. All of them.
  • Base-Breaking Character: Jessica Williams. Depending on who you ask she's either a brutally honest, hilarious Ensemble Dark Horse or an annoying Soapbox Sadie Scrappy who drags down the show every time she appears.
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  • Broken Base: Jon's increasing bias towards liberals and against conservatives, with some saying he was willing to look the other way for most major liberal mis-steps in direct contrast to jumping onto anything that could make Conservatives look bad.
  • Crosses the Line Twice:
    • On February 24, 2014, Larry Wilmore retorted Andrew Napolitano's assertion that if Abraham Lincoln left the southern slave-holding states alone, then slavery would have died from natural causes and The American Civil War would have been averted, by saying "The South was so committed to slavery Lincoln didn't die from natural causes!"
    • Basically every one of Lewis Black's appearances has a rant that edges on this trope. Of course that's to be expected from Black.
  • Ear Worm: "Stay, Mr. Hannity, staaaay..."
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
  • Fan Community Nicknames: Stoned slackers, appropriated from Bill O'Reilly.
  • Foe Yay: If him and Bill O'Reilly aren't this...
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment:
    • Calling their coverage of the 2000 Presidential election "Indecision 2000", which included this prelude. Jon's opening monologue the day after the election, with the final count still not decided, flat-out calls it this.
      Jon Stewart: Calling this whole thing "Indecision 2000" was at first a bit of a lighthearted jab, perhaps an attempt at humor. We had no idea that people were gonna run with that. We, uh... thought we were kidding, quite frankly, but indecision is exactly where we are right now.
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    • Back when Jon was still young and innocent, on the first day after a break, Stewart ran a story about financial troubles, and when he saw Bush's... Bush-like commentary on the subject, his response was a cheerful "we're doomed!" He then went on to do a story about oil dependency and alternative energy. The date? September 10, 2001. The show's break would be extended a bit.
    • Saying that Bob Novak contains "the cure for the cure for cancer", and than rather than having a mid-life crisis Novak is having an "end of life crisis", only for it to be revealed a week later that the man had brain cancer, and that he died a year later from it, could not have been what Jon Stewart intended.
    • Sending Jason Jones to Iran just before the 2009 elections for interviews that would air the week after led to some last-minute editing workarounds when they couldn't not air the material, but the prominent opposition supporters they had interviewed in typical Daily Show style had since been rounded up by the government. And Maziyar Bahari actually had the footage used against him while he was in prison.
    • February 17, 2011 Aasif Mandvi makes up the fake "Qu'osby Show" to help people adjust to Muslims like the Cosby Show supposedly did for African Americans, and his "test audience" (who thought they were watching a real show) insisted that the family was too normal and needed "a terrorist uncle in the basement" or were "secretly very jihad" to seem like they were really Muslims to viewers. Cut to December 13 and the show All American Muslim is getting flak for showing Muslims as "normal people" and not focusing on the more extremist parts of the religion.
      • And then in 2015, Bill Cosby was accused by multiple women of being a serial rapist, as if this segment wasn't awkward in hindsight enough.
    • During the summer of 2013, political pundits were already speculating about the 2016 presidential election, leading guest host John Oliver to do a segment called "Can't You At Least Wait Until Jon Stewart Gets Back?". However, in August 2015, Jon Stewart stepped down as host of the Daily Show, so he didn't get to skewer the 2016 election.
      • That same segment ended with John Oliver urging Donald Trump to run for president and offering to write him a campaign check ("on behalf of this country, which doesn't want you to be president, but which badly wants you to run!"). Fast forward to November 6th, 2016, and Oliver concedes in his own show that he has no defence for that and notes that it's hard to believe that there was a time when people thought Trump's candidacy would be funny.
      • There are many segments throughout 2011 (when Trump was promoting the "birther" movement) where Stewart urges him to run, even begging him to reconsider when Trump announced that he wouldn't run in 2012.
      • Similarly, in March 2011, Lewis Black had joked that Trump should be elected president, saying "What this country needs is a crazy third world dictator!".
  • Genius Bonus:
    • When covering Dov Hikind's Purim blackface scandal, correspondent Jessica Williams goes into a long tirade about the "War on Purim" and references obscure Jewish traditions. Throughout the segment, Jon actually struggles to keep a straight face.
      Jon: Somewhere, there is a rabbinical college laughing their asses off at this. Meanwhile, we got an audience of Lutherans going, "I don't know, I thought he was gonna talk about the sequester."
    • At the start of the "Go Fuck Yourself, Bernie Goldberg" segment, a man named Toppington Von Monocle protests Goldberg's assertion that Jon's audience is unsophisticated by quoting Catullus 16. The line he uses (I will sodomize and face-fuck you) sounds so over-the-top that one assumes that Jon and his writers made it up, but no, that's what it actually means.
  • Growing the Beard: Jon Stewart's run is generally credited with turning the show from a light parody of local news to a deep and incisive political satire. If there was ever any doubt that Jon is America's best newsman, remember the 9/11 responders bill? As it turns out, Jon's rage over the fact that the bill had not been passed was credited as being instrumental in the bills resurrection and passing into law.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • "Indecision 2000" started as a funny play on words, then got funnier when it turned out to be the perfect title for that particular election.
    • With the underwear bombing, there was this.
    • There's also a segment from a 1991 HBO comedy special with Jon Stewart talking about the first Gulf War and complaining about how short it was when the pundits were fearing it would become 'a second Vietnam'. Twelve years later...
    • Michael Steele, the former chairman of the Republican National Committee, talks about the coming of a left-wing protest group at 06:50 in this clip. A month or two later...
    • Many were surprised that Three 6 Mafia's "It's Hard Out There for a Pimp" from Hustle & Flow beat Dolly Parton's "Travelin' Through" from Transamerica as Best Original Song at the 2006 Academy Awards. This led Jon to note that Three 6 Mafia had won an award Martin Scorsese had not won. A year later, Scorsese would finally receive an Academy Award as Best Director for The Departed.
    • After the first Presidential debate between a dagger staring Mitt Romney and an Obama cardboard cutout, Jon showed various liberal pundits attempting to play "Polish that turd", attempting to make Obama's performance look better or excuse it. Then, fast forward about thirty minutes, Stephen Colbert proceeds to do THE. EXACT. SAME. THING.
    • In a 2000 show intro, Stewart jokes that marathons are a lot like elections in that they're always won by a Kenyan or a Moroccan.
    • The day after Anthony Wiener resigned, Jon Stewart made a joke saying he was also and leaving the show for John Oliver to host. Cut to Oliver sitting at Stewart's desk, before Jon runs up saying he's not actually leaving, and that he would not let Oliver host because something bad would happen. Years later, not only does Oliver guest host the show while Stewart is out of the country making a documentary (during which time Weiner's goings-on come right back into the spotlight), but, as he predicted, the studio had a black-out during the run.
    • Vladimir Putin first came to The Daily Show's attention in 1999 when he became Boris Yeltsin's new prime minister, a position which had a High Turnover Rate. Jon joked that Putin's political career was already over.
    • During the 2008 Democratic national convention, The Daily Show played a satirical biographical film about then-nominee Barack Obama called "Barack Obama: He Completes Us", which parodied The Lion King. In the 2011 White House Correspondents' Dinner, now-President Obama trolled Fox News and the birthers, particularly Donald Trump, by playing footage of what he claimed was from his birth, before revealing it was really the opening of The Lion King.
    • When original host Craig Kilborn interviewed Jon Stewart (back when he was just a guest), Jon makes a comment halfway through about The Daily Show discussing political issues. Craig seems amused by the idea...
    • The night Obama was elected the show did a bit where Larry Wilmore announced that, because of the election of America's first black president, he'd be replacing Jon Stewart as host and Wyatt Cenac would be replacing Stephen Colbert. In 2015 Wilmore replaced Colbert and the half-black Trevor Noah became host of The Daily Show.
    • Jon's interview with Paula Broadwell, when she was promoting her David Petraeus biography, is hilariously cringey in retrospect now that it's come out she was having an affair with Petraeus. Jon, who at the time of the interview obviously had no idea, later himself acknowledged the absurdity.
      Jon Stewart: I'm the worst journalist in the world. For God’s sake, the title of her book was ‘All In.’
    • In the November 6th, 2016 episode of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver Oliver, in addition to the clip listed under "Funny Aneurysm" Moment, also shows The Daily Show clip from 2008 where both he and Jon Stewart proclaim that Chicago Cubs will never, ever win the World Series. They were proven wrong in 2016, which Oliver acknowledges.
    • In 1999, billionaire presidential candidate Steve Forbes was jokingly asked by Vance DeGeneres in a post-debate press conference whether he was wealthy enough to bus enough out-of-state voters to New Hampshire to swing the primary in his favour (which, of course, would constitute massive voter fraud). Eighteen years later, billionaire president Donald Trump would claim that illegal voters were bussed to New Hampshire, supposedly causing him to lose electoral votes there.
  • Ho Yay:
    • Played for humor many times, especially between Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. Jon and Stephen seem to actively encourage it.
    • Not to mention Jon and Steve Carrell
      Steve: I missed you!
      Jon: I missed you!
      Audience: Aww
      Jon: Talk about a third wheel.
    • Jon and Brian Williams in any of their interviews.
    • Jon talking to his latest Emmy
      Emmy: I should have slept with Colbert when I had the chance.
      Jon: I beat you to that too, huh?
    • And so, so much between Jon and Brian Williams. Williams and Chatroulette. That is all.
    • And between Jon and Ricky Gervais.
    • There was also the moment in the introduction to the 2006 Oscars ceremony where Jon wakes up in bed next to George Clooney and does a happy dance when George tells him it's not a dream.
    • "If I believed everything you said when you were drunk I'd be Mrs. Denis Leary by now!"
    • Early on, there was that bit with Mike Myers.
    • On August 17, 2011, there was Ho Yay between John Oliver and Wyatt Cenac.
  • I Am Not Shazam: The host of the show is Jon Stewart, not Jon Daily. Jon has on occasion referred to himself as that, though—once when he made a "mistake" and chastised himself verbally, referring to himself as Jon Daly as he did so, and they had some fun with this on the back of Earth (The Book)
    Wikipedia: Earth (The Book) is a 2010 humor parody satire book written by the authors of the popular television program The John Daly Show
  • It's Not Supposed to Win Oscars: Several reviewers have criticized Stewart for his reliance on a double standard: he can satirize political and religious figures, but when they attack his arguments, he counters that his show is supposed to be a joke.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "Roll 212!"
    • This bit, thanks to the 2011 State of the Union address:
      [shows clip of Kathy Proctor looking to the side and pointing to herself proudly]
      Jon: What the—no! No! Kathy Proctor, you are not [insert relevant activity here]!
    • Willie Geist's disapproving glare is well on the way to this.
    • A bit of a Forced Meme since Jon asked the audience to make it one, but quickly after showing the joys of putting unfitting music to Mitch McConnel's campaign commercial, McConneling became a meme.
  • My Real Daddy: Jon Stewart's run is generally credited with turning the show from a light parody of local news to a deep and incisive political satire. Trevor Noah is very aware of this fact. If you mention the name "Craig Kilborn" to a sizable portion of the show's fans, they will respond with "Who?"
  • Nausea Fuel:
    • In one episode, Aasif Mandvi covered the Iowa Straw Poll, where they were serving battered and deep-fried sticks of butter. Aasif one-upped them by eating an uncooked stick of butter dipped in mayonnaise.
    • In another, Jon had a blueberry pancake and sausage (on a stick) dipped in bacon-flavoured mayo.
      Jon: I think my tongue just took a shit.
  • Nightmare Fuel/Paranoia Fuel: During his interview with Jon Ronson, author of The Psychopath Test, Ronson revealed that one psycho (and psychos in general) really want people to like them because, "you can manipulate them to do whatever you want them to". He also showed that psychologists believe 1 in 100 people are psychopathic.
  • Once Acceptable Targets: Subverted. Jon Stewart (a Jew) gives all his correspondents passes to make as many Jew jokes as they please.
  • Older Than They Think:
    • Many viewers might not know that the recurring Even Stephven (debates between Colbert and Carrell) and This Week in God (discussing religion) segments share a lot of similarities with the Craig Kilborn era Backfire and God Stuff segments.
    • Older viewers may remember Stewart's use of the titles Headlines, This Just In and Other News to differentiate parts of the show. They could easily be unaware that Kilborn was the originator of that.
    • Back in Black was a segment in Kilborn's era, but it's entirely possible, given the lack of footage from Kilborn's show, to think it originated with Stewart.
  • Special Effects Failure:
    • The chroma key backgrounds constantly fail. The correspondents hang lampshades on them at every possible opportunity. Stephen Colbert is the best at this.
    • During one particular Chroma Key segment, Michael Steele, seen here telling a waiter there is a fly in his soup, leaves his night time barbecue to answer the door. It then shows an actual Michael Steele clip, happening at day. When Steele returns, Jon asks why it took him an entire day to answer the door.
    • The Gitmo segments had Jon holding a hand puppet in front of one camera (with the Guantanomo background) while he spoke into the other. Except for the one time he accidentally moved his puppet arm into the same frame as his own face. Corpsing ensued.
  • Squick: During the fake press conference after the Anthony Weiner resignation, Jon cuts himself while making a frozen daiquiri. He tries to turn off the blender by pounding the buttons with the side of his hand... while still holding the glass in that hand. For a brief moment when he lifts his injured hand, you can see the glass sticking out of the fresh gash in his hand.
    Jon: [examining bleeding hand] That's not good...
  • Vindicated by History: Charlton Heston's speech at the NRA conference, which occurred shortly after the Columbine shootings was given poignant context and praised in light of the "Ground Zero Mosque" debate in 2010.

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