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SA’s Trevor Noah Picks Things Up With 3 Emmy Nominations for the Daily Show

For the past few years the question of the true successor to the throne of Jon Stewart has often been debated. By which, people can’t help but wonder who takes on the responsibility of the sane, rational voice of reason with of course, the unarguable slice of humor on late-night television, and who rises above the rest to tell it like it is no matter how complex or hard the truth may be, just like Stewart always did on “The Daily Show” throughout his phenomenal run. Trevor Noah, the South African author and comedian who was picked as Stewart’s successor in 2015, may be proving his spot on the throne after all.

Trevor Noah has thanked fans for their continued support after The Daily Show walked away with 3 nominations for the 70th annual Primetime Emmy Awards on Thursday, 13 July. “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah” scored its first nomination for Outstanding Variety Talk Series since Trevor Noah took over as host, along with its first nomination in the Outstanding Interactive Program category. The series also received its second consecutive nomination for Outstanding Short Form Variety Series for Between the Scenes, a category for which it received the Emmy Award last year in the Best Variety Talk Series category. The comedian, who is in Russia for the Football World Cup, posted a picture of himself on Instagram, captioning it: “Wow, I visited Russia for 3 days and now The Daily Show is nominated for 3 Emmys. Next time I should stay for a week and then run for president. To all the people who voted for us and to all who watch our show I could not be more grateful.”

Noah has consistently discussed and made fun of the news from a liberal perspective, but not without constant criticism and comparison to Stewart owing in part to the fact that Trevor Noah is South African, not American. Some argue that he doesn’t know American politics like Jon Stewart, and as a result, doesn’t provide the catharsis that most Americans feel when it comes to daily events, often sounding like “the other” while making jokes with a punch line of “Silly Americans.” However, there have been foreign news commentators who have been rated as hitting closer to Stewart’s legacy such as Samantha Bee and John Oliver, but whom have both been previous commentators on Stewart’s Daily Show. 

“The Daily Show Host” Trevor Noah, alongside predecessor John Stewart. Photo: TheDailyBeast

The Daily Show host, who made the Time 100 list of influential people in April, really shines when he tackles an issue that affects him more than any other late-night host: racism. The biracial comedian was literally “Born a Crime” to a black mother and white father in South Africa during the apartheid era and therefore has far more of a personal perspective on it than any other host could ever have. 

Unfortunately, Trevor Noah’s “Daily Show” has so far failed to receive the kind of accolades his predecessor received in his prime. For many years “The Daily Show” dominated the Emmys when Jon Stewart was the host, winning a stunning 10 years in a row for Best Variety Series (2003- 2012), and an 11th time in 2015 when the category was separated into Best Variety Talk Series. All in all, Jon Stewart’s “Daily Show” was nominated for 60 Emmys and won 23 of them. However, it wasn’t until a couple of years after Stewart first started hosting “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” in 1999 that it finally picked up a pair of Emmy nominations. Maybe, this is just the beginning of a similar twist to Noah’s lukewarm beginning.

Trevor Noah won his first Emmy in September 2017 for his YouTube comedy special, “The Daily Show: Between the Scenes” which very often include stories from his youth and from back home in South Africa. Noah is up against Jimmy Kimmel, Stephen Colbert and Britain’s James Corden. The Emmy Awards will be held Monday, 17 September, hosted by “Saturday Night Live” stars Michael Che and Colin Jost.