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November 27, 2014

John Oliver

John Oliver Upgrades to Tom Hanks to Talk Last Shuttle Launch on 'Daily Show' (VIDEO)

by Jason Hughes, posted Jul 15th 2011 3:48AM
Tom Hanks, 'The Daily Show with Jon Stewart'John Oliver was at the Kennedy Space Center for the last launch of the space shuttle Atlantis. To talk about this end of an era for 'The Daily Show' (Weeknights, 11PM ET on Comedy Central), he spoke with people at the launch, and even sat down with Apollo 13's Captain James Lovell.

While Lovell is a true American pioneer and a NASA legend, he didn't quite give Oliver the gravitas he was looking for in this pivotal moment. So Oliver upgraded to the fictional version: Tom Hanks.

"All peoples need to have certain goals, something to strive for, and in doing so, we reach beyond ourselves to achieve that which we did not think was possible. To give up on that dream is to give up on America," Hanks said dramatically, but Oliver still wasn't convinced it was epic enough. Maybe Forrest Gump?

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John Oliver on Tea Party Rallies, His Comedy Central Stand-Up Series, and Being a Part of 'Community'

by Joel Keller, posted Mar 23rd 2011 3:00PM
John Oliver on 'John Oliver's New York Stand-up Show'
When you have 20 minutes to talk to John Oliver, it's hard to figure out where to start. The British import has been taking maximum advantage of his opportunity here in the States, after 'The Daily Show' plucked him from the U.K. stand-up circuit five years ago to be a correspondent and writer.

Since then, he's become the MVP of 'TDS' with his hilarious field reports, studio bits and pretty much any other way they can think of using him. He's been particularly adept at filing stories from rallies, parades and other huge gatherings, bringing back absurd quotes from everyone from Tea Party members to St. Patrick's Day revelers.

He's also made a mark in the sitcom world, playing Ian Duncan, Greendale's most apathetic professor, on 'Community.' Finally, Oliver has still been doing his current-events-charged stand-up, some of which you'll see on the new season of 'John Oliver's New York Stand-Up Show,' which premieres Thursday night (Friday morning) at midnight ET. The series' second season will showcase unknown comedians as well as vets like Maria Bamford and Greg Behrendt.

I spoke to Oliver earlier this month about going to Tea Party rallies, his experience at the 'Rally to Restore Sanity' and everything else that's going on in his busy career.

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Rod Blagojevich Plays 'Warlord' in 'Daily Show' Sketch on Wisconsin Labor Dispute (VIDEO)

by Jeremy Taylor, posted Mar 8th 2011 5:20AM
Rod Blagojevich on 'The Daily Show''The Daily Show With Jon Stewart' (Weeknights, 11PM ET on Comedy Central) sent correspondent John Oliver to the part of Illinois where 14 Democratic state senators from neighboring Wisconsin are hiding out rather than face a vote on a bill Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker has proposed, which eliminates the ability of many state workers to collective bargaining.

The premise of the sketch was that Oliver was in a place called "Ill-in-o-is, a desolate lawless region," and his "reporting" was in the style of a war correspondent who had found himself in a strange and dangerous land.

After doing such things as treating a fast food takeout window as if it was a military checkpoint, Oliver revealed that he'd "arranged a meeting with a notorious former warlord" because "apparently no one knows the region better than him."

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John Oliver Delivers Rebuttal to Jon Stewart's 'State of the Union' Jokes (VIDEO)

by Aimee Deeken, posted Jan 27th 2011 8:05AM
John Oliver's State of the Union Rebuttal on 'Daily'Just as Republican Congressman Paul Ryan delivered the GOP's rebuttal to President Obama's State of the Union address, 'The Daily Show' (weeknights, 11PM ET on COM) offered a rebuttal to its own jokes about the speech.

"We've heard tonight the jokes Jon Stewart believes America deserved to hear. But what are the jokes we didn't hear?" wondered John Oliver. For instance, "CNN broadcast from the set of 'Tron.' Jokes and observations I think strengthen America, and Jon Stewart just let it all slide."

He continued in mock seriousness: "Americans have a right to laugh not just at the speeches but also at the inane blather surrounding the speeches." Cue footage of one commentator remarking, "Looks like [the President] is wearing a purple tie."

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'Daily Show' Offers Souvenir Plates of UK Rioters' Attack on Royals (VIDEO)

by Aimee Deeken, posted Dec 14th 2010 8:00AM
John Oliver Offers Souvenir Riot Plates on 'Daily'British comedian John Oliver understands Americans: He knows we are obsessed with his country's royal family. Yes, there's that whole engagement thing. But given that 'The Daily Show' (weeknights, 11PM ET on COM) is (largely) a political program, he's more likely to focus on London's student riots over tuition fees. But riots plus royal family? Gold mine.

"You're probably watching these historic riots and thinking, 'Wow, Camilla Parker Bowles' expression was absolutely priceless. Is there any way that I could preserve that memory for a lifetime?'" he joked.

Yes we can! Oliver and Olivia Munn proceeded to, er, sell "a selection of individually numbered commemorative plates" featuring Bowles' and Prince Charles' reactions to protesters attacking their car. The prize piece displays Bowles' shocked mug in a moment utterly lacking in royal refinement.

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Jon Stewart Thinks Sarah Palin Is a Hypocrite, Debates the Dr. Laura "N-Word" Issue (VIDEO)

by Oliver Miller, posted Aug 25th 2010 2:12AM
Jon Stewart Thinks Sarah Palin Is a Hypocrite, Debates the Dr. Laura 'N-Word' IssueWell, this particular controversy just might never end. Once again, we return to the issue of Dr. Laura Schlessinger, and her use of the "N-word." But now, we're adding Sarah Palin to the mix.

In case you have forgotten or haven't been paying attention: Dr. Laura used the "N-word" 11 times in a row while on her radio program. After the firestorm of controversy that resulted from this, Dr. Laura quit her show. Next, Sarah Palin instantly jumped to Laura's defense, claiming that Schlessinger's First Amendment rights were violated.

Specifically, Palin said that Laura had lost her right to freedom of speech. ... Now, on 'The Daily Show' (weeknights, 11PM ET on Comedy Central), Jon Stewart and his correspondents jump into attack mode -- and call Sarah Palin a hypocrite.

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World Cup Soccer Rage and Rivalry on 'Daily Show' (VIDEO)

by Aimee Deeken, posted Jun 24th 2010 5:30AM
World Cup Soccer Rage, Rivalry on 'Daily Show'Though the U.S. and the U.K. are commonly political allies, when it comes to soccer and the World Cup coverage on 'The Daily Show' (weeknights, 11PM ET on COM), all bets are off. Both the England and United States soccer teams have moved on to the next round of competition, so the rivalry continues: America vs. England, John Stewart vs. John Oliver.

"You're obviously going against Germany in the next round ... a difficult match," said Stewart to the English staffer.

"If Germany gives you guys, England, your side any trouble and you need America to swoop in and bail your asses out again, let us know," Stewart added. Oliver responded with some soccer rage, shouting, "[Beep] you so much! [Beep] you, John!"

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'The Daily Show' Correspondents: Where Are They Now?

by Daniel Frankel, posted Nov 19th 2009 5:00PM
John OliverWith his own New York-based stand-up comedy series launching on Comedy Central in January, John Oliver became only the latest correspondent from the channel's flagship program, 'The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,' to break out into his own series.

Here's a rundown of what the top correspondents are up to now.

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Daily Show's John Oliver gets own six part special

by Danny Gallagher, posted Nov 18th 2009 6:31PM
The second funniest guy on The Daily Show named John is finally getting his own corner of Comedy Central's airspace.

John Oliver has been tapped by the network to do a six part stand-up series cleverly titled John Oliver's New York Stand-Up Show. The specials will feature Oliver's signature stand-up as well as performances from his personal favorite comedians including Janeane Garofalo, Brian Posehn, Paul F. Tompkins and fellow Daily Show correspondent Kristen Schaal.

This is bound to be a real treat. If you haven't seen Oliver's stand-up either in person or from the comfort of your living room, you are missing out on some quality, edgy satire. His first special, Terrifying Times, was a real eye opener on American culture, politics and media. It should have been by the CIA as evidence to put Domino's on the "no fly" list (if you saw his special, that makes more sense, sort of).

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Community: Advanced Criminal Law

by Jason Hughes, posted Oct 16th 2009 1:19AM
Ken Jeong (Community)(S01E05) Hmmm, I'm not even sure what it was. I still really like Community, and there were some moments that I recognized as humorous throughout this episode. And yet, I found myself kind of bored with most of it. Maybe it's me.

There was certainly plenty going on, with Señor Chang on the warpath because someone cheated on their Spanish test, Abed learning the highly cultured art of "messing with" someone, and Annie recruiting Pierce to write the new school song. You have the Dean running around still pretending the community college is Harvard or Brown, while Jeff's friend, Professor Duncan, began his quest to beat Jeff into Britta's pants.

I will state, officially for the record, that I am about as done with Britta constantly accusing Jeff of only wanting to get together with her. We're five episodes in and it's getting tired. Either he is or he isn't, but I don't need to hear about it in every scene they have together.

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Community: Social Psychology

by Jason Hughes, posted Oct 9th 2009 4:40AM
Community: Social Psychology(S01E04) All hail Ken Jeong, returning to the cast this week. Now we see how he can be a part of storylines even when the students aren't in his class. Despite being in very few scenes so far, I can already tell that his Senor Chang is going to be one of the funniest characters on the show.

Couple him with last week's Professor Whitman (John Michael Higgins), and it becomes clear that the teachers at this community college are going to be the ones who are completely off-the-wall insane.

Our motley crew is more eccentric. We got an opportunity to get a little further into Shirley's unique personality, as she and Jeff discovered something they could bond over and talk about. In fact, it turns out this thing is about the only thing they can talk about, and it's something we can all relate to.

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Community: Introduction to Film

by Jason Hughes, posted Oct 2nd 2009 12:55AM
John Michael Higgins(S01E03) Hey Glee fans, Principal Figgins (Iqbal Theba) is Abed's father! Not the character, but the actor. We can always pretend, though. When those kids graduate McKinley High, they can come here. And Theba's not the only fun guest star we got this week. Fresh from a failed stint on Kath & Kim, John Michael Higgins appeared as the most free-spirited economics professor you could ever meet.

Throw out your books, your shoes and stand on your desk. Carpe diem! Wow, easy "A," right? That's what Jeff thought. He tried to look like he was seizing the day to earn the grade, but to truly do it requires a combination of relaxation and impulsiveness. Jeff's not capable of doing anything without planning and an ulterior motive, generally self-serving. Still it was fun watching his carefully orchestrated attempts to appear spontaneous.

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Community: Spanish 101

by Jason Hughes, posted Sep 25th 2009 5:00AM
Chevy Chase(S01E02) It looks like self-awareness has come to the study group of Community, or at least to one member of it. Also coming to Community is Ken Jeong, finally. Jeong is hilarious in ... well everything he's in, and here is no exception. We were introduced to him in a lovely scene where he berates and screams at his Spanish class for no reason at all.

Now that we're past the introductions, it's time to start getting a feel for what this show is going to be like. I'm guessing that they're still trying to figure out everybody's personality, and it's going to take time to get it right. Not to mention that it will probably take a few episodes to give everyone a chance to expose their inner selves.

I guess I was a little surprised at how quickly Shirley and Annie not only connected with one another, but went on a well-intentioned but incredibly tacky protest crusade. They did confirm that the show will be more Scrubs-zany than realistic. I can hang with the more screwball humor.

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Community: Pilot (series premiere)

by Jason Hughes, posted Sep 18th 2009 12:39AM
Community
(S01E01)
In a rather touching tribute to John Hughes, tonight's premiere of Community honored the director in the best way possible. By creating a great ensemble of individuals coming together to form a ... yes, that's the meaning of the title ... community.

I expected to like this show. Hell, the promos and early reviews made it a foregone conclusion. What I wasn't sure of was whether I'd like it because it had funny lines and jokes, or whether I'd like it because I cared about the people in it. It looks like the answer to that is going to be both.

The study group that Jeff accidentally pulls together to try and get into Britta's pants -- because why else would you form one -- is made up of just the kind of eclectic personalities you need to make a comedy like this work. Like Cheers, these are people from all different walks of life coming together.

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Timing perfect for DVD of Demitri Martin's Comedy Central show

by Nick Zaino, posted Sep 5th 2009 11:02AM
Important Things with Demetri MartinWhen I first previewed Important Things with Demetri Martin, I was hoping it would get good enough ratings to allow Martin to stick around and explore a little bit. I've enjoyed him as a stand-up comedian, both live and on his Comedy Central specials.

Important Things was the perfect vehicle for Martin, showcasing his absurdist deadpan, allowing him to work with some talented friends like John Oliver, Jon Benjamin, David Cross, and Amanda Peet, and even letting him play a musical number or two.

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