Well, it’s over folks and it hurts. Jon Stewart has always given what we should hail as an honest performance. He never phoned it in and he always cared about the Daily Show audience. That’s the link to greatness many of these host lack. The audience is a living breathing animal, it’s a beast with a thousand eyes and is always screaming to be fed. Every meal Jon fed us was completely satisfying. It filled our quota for entertainment, information, and perspective.
Jon Steward is the voice of the decade. The title, King of Comedy Central in the new millennium undoubtedly belonged to him. Seventeen years have passed sine Jon first occupied that chair. In that time we have seen peacetime, economic boom and bust, three presidents, 2 wars, landmark legislation, and a terror attack that rocked the nation. All during these sometimes horrifying events more and more people would tune into the Daily Show. Once present in the television audience we were safe in the knowledge that we were about to forget all our problems.
He flipped the dynamic of what is and is not news. Comedy was the perfect guise by which to educate the population. In truth those viewing his program could be seen as more aware than the average network news audience member. The partisan nature of media programming leaves it understandably lacking in depth and importance. Jon definitely exaggerated for comedic purposes but he did slam everyone equally. That’s the key, his viewership wasn’t only liberals as one might think. Jon had fans that were conservative, independent, religious, atheist, old, young, and everyone in between.
The landscape of political commentary may not be the same for a long time. Naturally, we wish his replacement the best yet it will be exceedingly difficult to live up to the memory. Just reporting isn’t enough. An anchor has to have a quality that makes the people trust and believe in him. The two best examples of the category Jon Stewart belongs in are the likes of Walter Cronkite and Edward R. Murrow. He’s gone and we miss him. Honesty in media has hit a speed bump yet we shan’t fear as the mold has been cast and hopefully not broken. Like he said himself “broadcasting is like a conversation, he’s just pausing to have a beer”.
Good Luck Jon.
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