Friday, August 7, 2015

Goodbye, Stewbeef: #JonVoyage to The Daily Show with Jon Stewart

"With the second best overall viewership in its history, Jon Stewart’s farewell from his 16-year satirical reign on Comedy Central was watched by 3.5 million last night. The best Daily Show viewership ever was the 3.6 million who tuned in for the October 28, 2008 visit by then Presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama. The 3.5 million is up significantly from the 2.5 million who saw the star-studded finale of The Colbert Report on December 18 last year."

Omaze co-founder Matt Pohlson: “Over the last 16 years, no one has done more than Jon to engage people around the issues that truly impact our lives, and it’s fitting that he leveraged his final show to raise more than $2 million for this incredible cause.”

Stewart partnered with charity fundraising platform Omaze to raise money for New York Collaborates for Autism. Donors who gave $10 or more were entered in a drawing to attend The Daily Show’s final taping, meet Stewart and hang out on the set. More than 47,000 people from 78 countries donated, generating a whopping $2.23 million for NYCA.

Cathy Trost, senior VP of exhibits and programs at Washington, D.C.'s Newseum: “From ‘The Daily Show’ anchor desk, Jon Stewart dissected the news with blistering wit and wisdom as millions watched. He also was a voice for a strong and free press, and against the silencing of journalists by repressive regimes. We are thrilled to accept the donation of these artifacts to the Newseum collection, because they are part of America’s cultural and media history, telling an important story about how political satire and news as humor made ‘The Daily Show’ a trusted news source for a generation.”

Brian Lowry, Variety columnist: "When Johnny Carson announced his retirement in 1991, Bob Hope was quoted as saying that it was “sort of like a head falling off Mt. Rushmore.” Stewart’s leave-taking doesn’t rise to that level, but as latenight-TV monuments go, odds are they’re not going to be building many more that will rival this one."

Frank Bruni, New York Times columnist: "Last week, as the comedy that is Trump held on to his lead in polls of Republican voters, we learned that President Obama had repeatedly summoned Jon Stewart, of Comedy Central, to the White House. That was a smart move, in terms of Obama’s stewardship of his image, his awareness of Stewart’s influence and his recognition that Stewart is in some odd sense the Walter Cronkite of the last decade."

Bill O'Reilly: "So the departure of every hairstylist’s poster guy will leave a void in the world of political satire. Undeniably, Jon Stewart was great at what he did. Whatever that was."

Bill O’Reilly and Jon Stewart have been appearing on each others’ programs to debate since 2001, rarely agreeing on anything. In 2012, they also engaged in The Rumble in the Air-Conditioned Auditorium at George Washington University, which some navel lint gazers said might not have been the 2012 presidential election’s most important debate but was definitely the most entertaining.

Louis C.K.: "I’m really amazed by what you did here. It’s really impressive. That you did this show for this long and you kept it this good for this long. And you stayed with the world’s events, and you were a voice of reason, and you were funny…it’s really like one of the great comedy accomplishments of all time."

Stephen Colbert: "We learned from you by example how to do a show with intention, how to work with clarity, how to treat people with respect. I know you are not asking for this, but on behalf of so many people whose lives you changed over the past 16 years: Thank you."

Under host Jon Stewart, 52, The Daily Show has risen to critical acclaim. It has received two Peabody Awards for its coverage of the 2000 and 2004 presidential elections. Between 2001 and 2012, it has been awarded 18 Primetime Emmy Awards in the categories of Outstanding Variety, Music, or Comedy Series (winner for 10 consecutive years from 2003 to 2012) and Outstanding Writing for a Variety, Music, or Comedy Program, and a further seven nominations. The show has also been honored by GLAAD, the Television Critics Association, and the Satellite Awards. America (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction, the 2004 bestseller written by Stewart and the writing staff of The Daily Show, was recognized by Publishers Weekly as its "Book of the Year", and its abridged audiobook edition received the 2005 Grammy Award for Best Comedy Album. In September 2010, Time magazine selected the series as one of "The 100 Best TV Shows of All-TIME".

More information:
» April 27, 2007: Jon Stewart Interview on Bill Moyers Journal
» July 11, 2003: Jon Stewart Interview on NOW with Bill Moyers
» Rolling Stone: "Jon Stewart, The Long Goodnight"
» Rolling Stone: "10 Times Jon Stewart Outdid Journalism"

Trevor Noah takes over hosting duties on The Daily Show on September 28.

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