On Tuesday’s Daily Show Trevor Noah found larger resonance in the tabloid headline situation between Kanye West, Kim Kardashian, and Pete Davidson. “One of the strangest things to try to wrap your head around – I find this especially in America – is when a story stops only applying to … not the industry it’s in but sort of the sector that it’s in, and when it starts effecting everybody or speaking to everybody,” he said.
Some stories are purely tabloid, some purely sport, “but then some stories I feel transcend everything else and then speak to larger conversations.”
That’s how Noah felt about West’s ongoing public harassment of his ex-wife, Kardashian, and Davidson, her new boyfriend. “It started very much in the land of tabloid,” he said, “but I feel it’s creeping and has crept into a world that more people should pay attention to but not for the reason that you may think.”
West has been trying to win Kardashian back through increasingly belligerent public gestures and statements; he recently released a claymation music video in which West’s character chops off Davidson’s head. West has been open about his mental health struggles, but the video in particular made Noah “uncomfortable” because it’s unclear how seriously people should take the threats.
The situation has “spun into a story that seems fully tabloid but I think it deserves a little more awareness from the general public, because it touches on something that is more sensitive and more serious than people would like to admit,” he explained.
“You may not feel sorry for Kim because she’s rich and famous, because of the way she dresses, because she appropriates black culture, because she tells women they’re lazy, broke the internet and then didn’t put it back together, whatever , you hate her,” Noah continued. “But what she’s going through is terrifying to watch, and it shines a spotlight on what so many women go through when they choose to leave.”
Noah recalled growing up in an abusive household in South Africa, and how often people would tell his mother she was over-reacting, or question what she did that elicited the abuse and harassment. As a child, Noah saw “a world where women are questioned for what is happening to them as opposed to people questioning what is happening to them”.
Noah was adamant that he was not calling West a bad guy, just asking society to think harder. “We have to ask ourselves questions. Do we wish to stand by and watch a car crash when we thought we saw it coming? Or do we at least want to say hey, slow down, let’s all put our hazards on because there’s a storm right now,” take threats seriously and look idiotic if they don’t pan out. “I’d rather be in that situation than to be in one where I say ‘Man, I wish we didn’t think the whole thing wasn’t worth looking at.’”
On the Late Show, Stephen Colbert rounded up more troubling news from Ukraine, starting with the Russian-occupied southern city of Melitopol, where “the new not-really-mayor” told residents that the city would broadcast Russian state television so people could “ get accurate information”.
“Yes, they’ll be treated to accurate Russian stories like ‘despite how you feel, you are happy,’ and they can watch the popular Russian state children’s program ‘Peppa Potato,’” Colbert joked.
Earlier this week, leaders from Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovenia were in Kyiv to express solidarity with Ukraine. Because of the conflict, the leaders arrived by train. “Wow, the trains are still running there? European train service is so much better than ours,” Colbert said. “The only war zone you see on Amtrak is the bathroom.”
Colbert also praised Marina Ovsyannikova, a producer and editor for Russian state television, who burst onto a nightly news broadcast with a sign protesting the war in Ukraine.
The sign read, in part, “Don’t believe the propaganda. They’re lying to you here.”
“That is a fantastic sign and a brave statement,” said Colbert. “I only have one bone to pick: ‘they’re lying to you here’ is already the motto of crypto.com.”
Following her protest, Ovsyannikova wasn’t heard for hours, but the Washington Post confirmed Tuesday that she was alive and wouldn’t be charged by the Kremlin for illegal speech. She was, however, found guilty of organizing an illegal protest and fined 30,000 rubles. “To which she said, ‘oh thank god, I thought you were going to ask for money,’” Colbert quipped.
And in Los Angeles, Jimmy Kimmel celebrated the Senate’s passage of a bill that would make daylight saving time permanent in the US, “meaning we might never have to change the clock on the microwave again”.
Numerous politicians have been trying to pass said legislation for years “but they kept getting clock-blocked,” Kimmel explained. The new bill, however, got unanimous support in the Senate. “When was the last time anything got a unanimous vote in the Senate?” Kimmel wondered. “They couldn’t even agree unanimously to condemn Asian-American hate crimes. Josh Hawley was like ‘Let’s not rush into anything’”.
Senator Marco Rubio, a Republican from Florida who was the lead sponsor for the bill, explained that “there’s strong science behind it that is now showing and making people aware of the harm that clock switching has.”
“Well, good for you, Marco,” Kimmel deadpanned, “and wait until you find out about all the other things that have strong science behind them.”
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism