Stewart Returns, Gets Right Down to Business

He's back hosting the 'Daily Show' on Mondays, kicks off first show by ripping on Biden, Trump
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 13, 2024 9:55 AM CST

It's been nearly a decade since fans got their "Moment of Zen" from Jon Stewart—but on Monday night, the comedian was back manning The Daily Show desk that he abandoned in summer 2015—right after Donald Trump announced he was running for president the first time. Stewart, who will host the Comedy Central show on Mondays through the 2024 election cycle, was definitely "grayer" than when we last saw him on the network, "but he was otherwise in classic form," notes the New York Times. His show opener: "Welcome to The Daily Show! My name is Jon Stewart. Now, where was I?" Other coverage of Stewart's return:

  • 'Like he never left': That's NPR's take on Stewart's reemergence, with the outlet noting Stewart "eased back into the host's chair without missing a beat, firing off jokes with a familiar style that felt like he had left just a few weeks ago." It also notes he "brought a confidence the program sorely needs."
  • Back into politics: Per the Hill, Stewart kicked things off by diving right into Election 2024, and slamming the advanced age of the frontrunners for both parties. "They are the oldest people ever to run for president—breaking by only four years the record that THEY set the last time they ran!" Stewart said of President Biden, 81, and former President Trump, 77. "What the f--- are we doing here, people?"
  • Noting his own age: Stewart even brought the camera to focus in on his own somewhat-wizened appearance. "Look at me. Look what time hath wrought," he said. "Give the kids a treat of the lunar surface here." He then added, in reference to Biden and Trump: "I'm like 20 years younger than these motherf---ers!"
  • Getting serious: Stewart also delivered a more sober civics lesson of sorts, shifting responsibility away from the candidates and onto the viewers, per the Hollywood Reporter. "They're both stretching the limits of being able to handle the toughest job in the world," Stewart noted. "What's crazy is thinking that we're the ones, as voters, who must silence concerns and criticisms. It is the candidates' job to assuage concerns, not the voters' job not to mention them." He also suggested Americans need to get more involved in creating a world they want to live in: "The good news is I'm not saying you don't have to worry about who wins the election. I'm saying you have to worry about every day before it and every day after—forever."

Watch Stewart's return in full here. (More Jon Stewart stories.)

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