John Oliver Somehow Finds the Humor in the Capitol Riot
The “Last Week Tonight” host joined Jimmy Kimmel on Inauguration Day to discuss the festivities and that terrifying, treasonous MAGA assault on the Capitol.
“I don’t know about America yet… but I feel great again,” proclaimed Jimmy Kimmel at the top of his monologue Wednesday night.
He added, “I have to imagine this is what it feels like when the oncologist calls and tells you the tumor is benign.”
Later on in the show, the comedian brought on another late-night comic: John Oliver. The Last Week Tonight host, who cast his first vote in a U.S. presidential election against Trump, has been off for the last two months, with the eighth season of his HBO series premiering Feb. 14. So we got to see Oliver weigh in on Wednesday’s star-studded Biden inauguration (though we’ll have to wait until Last Week’s return for his full thoughts on the MAGA insurrectionists’ assault on the U.S. Capitol and Trump’s enabling of it).
Asked how he felt about the Biden/Harris festivities, Oliver replied, “It was a huge relief. It was nice to get to enjoy an inauguration without a pit of dread in your stomach. So it was nice to get to enjoy the weird bits. You got the luxury of enjoying J.Lo segueing into ‘Let’s Get Loud,’ or Garth Brooks’ formal jeans—you got to enjoy those without thinking you were about to get threatened by the incoming president. So that alone was really nice, to be honest. It was a low bar.”
With that, Oliver explained that it was OK for Americans to feel joy for at least a day before getting down to the business of rebuilding the country.
“It’s gonna be important that we allow ourselves just to have a day—to have one day of feeling the relief before worrying about, yeah, there are monumental issues that we’re facing, there are systemic problems that have gone unaddressed for too long, there are real questions about whether the scale of Biden’s solutions will match the scale of the problems he’s inheriting, but I do think that has to wait till at least tomorrow,” offered Oliver. “Give us a day.”
Before he left, Kimmel brought up the Trump fanatics who sieged (and defecated all over) the U.S. Capitol—and Oliver managed to find the humor in the horrible.
“Jan. 6 was an absolutely terrible day… it’s a permanent stain on American history,” said Oliver. “It is important to remember that it started with Rudy Giuliani walking onto a stage to ‘Macho Man,’ so all I’m saying is it wasn’t a hundred percent unfunny. Shades of gray. Mostly bad… that was funny.”