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The February 11, 2013 episode of The Daily Show focused on the Pope’s retirement, the Harvard cheating scandal and a discussion with George Stephanopoulos.
The episode began with Jon Stewart discussing Pope Benedict XVI retiring. Stewart briefly covered what the Pope will do in his retirement before throwing over to Samantha Bee. Bee told Stewart that the Pope is having a crisis of faith after the Manti Te’o story. The Pope is questioning a relationship where he talks regularly with someone he never actually sees. Stewart then introduced Oliver who was also in Rome. Oliver’s segment was a bit more directly confrontational with both the Catholic Church and the United States Government. Oliver and Stewart were discussing possible candidates to replace Benedict and Oliver began giving Republican presidential candidates from the last election. When Stewart asked why they were likely candidates since the Church and the U.S. government were nothing alike Oliver responded with a sarcastic diatribe comparing the two as institutions moving beyond their usefulness or relevance run by old white men. There were a number of other points in this well crafted diatribe, but I will not spoil them here. I definitely recommend you go check them out. Oliver and Stewart then discuss if Benedict will pull a Full Leno. The Pope would retire and then a few months later, unhappy with his retired life, return to demand his old job back. If the Pope does pull a Full Leno, then Oliver and Stewart agree that they will be Team Popo.
The second segment was about the Harvard cheating scandal. Stewart begins with a basic explanation of the facts. The test the students cheated on was open book, open notes and open internet. When the students were caught they received a weak punishment. Stewart compares the cheating to people on Project Runway. Stewart then wondered what class could these students have been in that would almost encourage them to cheat after dangling the opportunity in their faces. Stewart then reveals the class was Introduction to Congress.
The guest for this episode was George Stephanopoulos. They began the interview talking about how Stephanopoulos gets along with his colleagues and any politicking present in his studios. He and Stewart mostly discussed the upcoming State of the Union Address and past ones. They talked about a speech President Bill Clinton did where they put up the previous State of the Union Address and Clinton had to ad lib for about thirteen minutes before the real speech was put on the teleprompter.
Stewart and Stephanopoulos also spent some time talking about President Barack Obama’s use of drones and his recent reveals. Stewart argued that there needs to be a judicial process for drone use like there is for search warrants.
The episode was decently entertaining. I am hoping it picks up throughout the week though. Stephanopoulos was an interesting guest and the coverage of the Pope’s retirement was entertaining. None of the stories felt like they were the best stories they could have picked. However, it is the beginning of the week and they may be prepping some better stories for the next few days.