Monday, April 14, 2008

Save the date: John Oliver, June 13-15, The Punchline

Posted By on Mon, Apr 14, 2008 at 5:26 PM

So everybody’s all jacked up about Jon Stewart coming to the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre on May 10. (By everybody, I’d include me, too.) No doubt Stewart will deliver the same kind of witty political satire that fuels his work as the host of the Emmy-winning “The Daily Show” and his 2004 book, America (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction.

But for my money (literally), the better deal might be the appearance by “Daily Show” correspondent and stand-up comedian John Oliver at The Punchline, on June 13-15. Call me a cynic, but I can’t help but feel “The Daily Show” has suffered a small talent shortage with the departure of Stephen Colbert and what feels like a lessening role for Samantha Bee. This crop suggests quantity over quality, but that said, Oliver is best of the bunch. He seems to get more play than, say, Rob Riggle or Jason Jones.

Maybe that’s because the British-born Oliver, more than the others, is able to tap into the more nuanced peculiarities of political satire. He also gets extra credit for walking the walk during the writers’ strike. While Oliver is also known for his podcast “The Bugle” with partner Andy Zaltzman, he also will premiere his own Comedy Central stand-up special “John Oliver: Terrifying Times” on April 20. (More on that show next week; the previous link offers a hilarious snippet from the show.)

For now, here is one of my favorite examples of his “Daily Show” work, where he interviews Qatar's ambassador to the United Nations. Classic …

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