And now this…
By Jerrison Oracion, Senior Columnist
He also talked about censorship when the episode on Modi did not air on the India streaming service Hotstar.
Fall TV this year began two months late not only because of the US Election (which ended up being the only thing that everyone was watching during most of the week) but also because of the coronavirus pandemic. Shows certainly incorporated these major events into their plotlines.
As the months went by, they started to run out of ideas because not a lot was happening—the jokes were getting repetitive. Some of these shows, including Saturday Night Live, were back in the studio despite another lockdown possibly happening again. Further, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver still won Outstanding Variety Talk Series at the Emmy Awards this year. I have not watched the show in a while because I have not had HBO.
What makes the show interesting is that it is like an encyclopedia where you like to hear John Oliver explain things (and say the f-word a lot) instead of Piers Morgan. The season summarized the entire year and addressed various issues that would be discussed again today since more cases are being reported. A lot of the things that Oliver talked about were the same topics that I talked about in my stories in the newspaper this year, though he made jokes about Adam Driver as well.
The season began in the middle of February, which still featured a lot of surprising events, but coronavirus was not in the United States yet. In a typical episode, it begins with Oliver summarizing the week and making special reports and interviews. Some of the topics explored in his special reports include health care—where he mentioned Tommy Douglas and The Greatest Canadian, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and how sheriffs are elected. He also talked about censorship when the episode on Modi did not air on the India streaming service Hotstar because of the subject matter of the report.
When the pandemic arrived in the United States, episode four was dedicated to it and showed a TikTok of two men doing a dance to a song about handwashing that Oliver described as a jam song and got everyone talking. After a few positive tests of the virus were found in the CBS Broadcast Center in New York City where the show is filmed, they moved to another studio and eventually filmed the show currently in Oliver’s apartment. In the home episode, it is as if he is still in the studio. This makes it look like I am watching an educational video on YouTube—because there is no audience, it allows me to laugh when something is funny. He made a lot of references to trends, Netflix, and even tried to find hidden artistic paintings including a risqué rat painting seen in a TV art auction. With a month and a half left this year, 2020 was a historic year. Until the show is back in February, I am probably going to be watching Don Lemon.