No, it's not fair that a stand-up comedian be judged on a few lame tweets or that he be secretly videotaped at a club while working out new material. On the other hand, do you find that comedians have become a little whiny lately... and with a whiff of self-importance? You're being judged unfairly? Well, boo f*cking hoo. And in the Middle East, hostages are getting their heads cut off by ISIS... which, incidentally, I wrote a funny tweet about.
In coming to the defense of their new The Daily Show host, Comedy Central released a statement that said, "Like many comedians, Trevor Noah pushes boundaries; he is provocative and spares no one, himself included." Really? Because it seems like he spares everyone except Jews and women.
Which is fine.
In response to the criticism, Noah tweeted, "To reduce my views to a handful of jokes that didn't land is not a true reflection of my character, nor my evolution as a comedian." Maybe. Although his "fat chicks" jokes are pretty spread out over time, so I'm not seeing much of an evolution.
Just a thought...
In the history of stand-up comedy, has anyone who started with "fat chicks are only sexy if you're drunk" jokes ever evolved into something more? Let me research some of George Carlin's early material. Hmm... nope. No fat chicks jokes. I don't recall a young Richard Pryor making fun of fat chicks. And I bet Jon Stewart never started his career with any "fat chicks are only sexy if you're drunk" jokes, either. Just sayin'.
But, hey, they're just jokes.
Trevor Noah is probably a nice person. That he tweeted some bad jokes is not a crime. Rational people aren't outraged by anything he wrote. Comedy Central, presumably, put a lot of thought in hiring the next host of The Daily Show. For critics, especially those who don't even watch The Daily Show, to say that Trevor Noah should be fired from a job he hasn't even started yet is absurd. And political correctness is rarely found in great comedy and biting satire.
"Oh yeah the weekend. People are gonna get drunk & think that I'm sexy!" - fat chicks everywhere.
6:27 AM - 14 Oct 2011
But isn't there some gray area between adulation and condemnation? I think there is. I think the gray area, in this situation, is that Trevor Noah is an extremely handsome young man. And for a good-looking guy, who probably doesn't have much trouble attracting pretty women, to mock fat chicks... well, it just makes him kind of douchey. Not saying he shouldn't be allowed to take comedy risks. Not saying his livelihood should be taken away because some don't find his jokes funny. Just saying that for a handsome guy to belittle overweight women is kind of a d-bag move. Am I allowed to say that, stand-up comedians? Am I destroying the sanctity of stand-up comedy by commenting on and criticizing a joke? Am I destroying the very fabric of humor by suggesting that Trevor Noah's jokes are kind of mean, Patton Oswalt?
The brilliant Chris Rock makes fun of white people. Those jokes aren't just for black people. They're for black people and white people. I'm white... more or less. I think Rock's jokes are hysterical. And they're true.
Trevor Noah's fat chicks jokes aren't intended for heavy women. Do you think large young women enjoy jokes about their lack of sex appeal? Rather, Noah's jokes are for a certain type of audience, the type of person who, well, let me just be blunt; jokes about fat chicks are for dickwads in fraternities.
Which is fine.
(Full disclosure: I did not officially join a fraternity in college, by choice. I pledged a few, but only because of my weird hazing fetish.)
But, these days, young people get their news from sources like The Daily Show and Keeping Up with the Kardashians and Ariana Grande's latest tour pics.
But it's not just any young people who watch The Daily Show. It's the intelligent, thoughtful college students and high school kids who are looking for an alternative, progressive perspective on social issues and current events. And Jon Stewart provided that liberal voice. But now, it seems, liberalism is just as sexist and misogynistic as conservatism. In fact, it's worse. At least right-wing Republicans are honest. The Daily Show hosted by Sean Hannity wouldn't be very good, but at least you know exactly where the host stands on women's issues. (Literally, the host stands on women's issues.) Plus, I've watched FOX News; the comedian who portrays the Sean Hannity character is hysterical.
Let's get real. Comedy Central was never going to replace Jon Stewart with a woman. Oh, the show will still have female commentators. The feminine voice will be heard... it just won't have any power. Because power comes from sitting in the host's chair.
The "liberal" media is not a big fan of women. Women don't host talk shows. Actually, though, if you told me The Daily Show was looking for a new host -- one who is talented, young, smart, likable, attractive, provocative, and edgy, and one who probably has an interesting and outrageous and appropriate take on social and political issues... my first thought is comedian Amy Schumer. She would've made the perfect host. But Trevor Noah will probably be pretty good, too. I hope his first guest is a fat chick.