Monday, September 07, 2015

John Oliver is no longer just the host of a comedy show on HBO. He is force of nature.

Courtesy of Mashable:  

Craig Watts has spent the better part of three decades trying to bring attention to the inequities between major agricultural companies and farmers like himself. 

It's a battle that suddenly changed a few months ago. 

"If you've got a problem and you want it fixed, call John Oliver," he said. "That's my theory now." 

Watts was featured in a segment in May on Oliver's HBO show, "Last Week Tonight," that illustrated how the companies most associated with chicken in the U.S. take advantage of farmers. Since then, things haven't been quite the same. 

"In 18 minutes, he did what we've been trying for 30 years to do and that is just reach a general, broader audience. The story that he told, I cannot tell you how hard that is to tell to someone that is not really familiar with it." 

In about two years, Oliver has gone from Daily Show correspondent to the conscience of America, instigating on behalf of people in the trenches that are fighting the good fight. His show has touched on a wide variety of issues, from relatively well-known topics like LGBT discrimination and the U.S. government's use of torture to more arcane topics like TV televangelists and and food waste. 

His segments carry weight, often going on for more than 15 minutes and pulling no punches in expletive-laden rants. And when he talks, people don't just listen. They spread the message far and wide. 

"It has a huge effect," said Edwina Rogers, CEO of the Center for Prison Reform. "Now every social justice cause has hopes of getting covered in his show."

You know I have to admit that I was underwhelmed when Oliver took over for John Stewart while he was directing the movie "Rosewater" but clearly I was not seeing the genius that lurked behind those black rimmed glasses and disarming British accent.

"Last Week" is the show that Oliver was born to host, and what he has done with his half hour each Sunday evening is nothing short of amazing.


  1. Anonymous2:36 PM

    You know what, Gryph? After the departure of Stewart and Colbert, I that feel John Oliver is the last voice we have.

  2. Anonymous2:45 PM

    I loved his segment on televangelists and their money making 'seed' requests. It was so hilarious, especially when he decided to start his own church and the 800 number that he put up to call actually had his voice. He's good.

  3. Crystal Sage3:07 PM

    Even his small segment last night about the highlights of what one needs to learn at school was both hilarious and insightful. Loved his "spoilers" for required school reading.

  4. Anonymous3:25 PM

    America. We're so damn exceptional, aren't we? Screw those corporations and the people who run them.

  5. Anonymous3:30 PM

    But no one in television news will ever understand that the people deserve intelligent commentary.

    1. John Oliver has "ubered" mainstream journalists.

  6. My sis and BIL were here over the holiday. We watched all of John Oliver's shows that I had DVR'd. Their favs were the prosperity preachers and Sex Ed in America. We laughed and laughed! Love him. Loved him on the Daily Show too, but he was born for HBO!!!

  7. Anonymous3:47 PM

    A great show with some of the best writers. I find it amazing but not at all surprised at all of the talent The Daily Show has produced.

  8. Anonymous5:39 PM

    As much as I miss John Stewart, this Oliver guy's got quite a way of delivering interesting news with his own wit and style.

  9. John Oliver keeps me laughing while he presents all the dark realities with his amazing, sarcastic humor. I don't know if our country has ever faced such a low point in our history - we no longer have leadership - we've been taken hostage by the highest bidders and they're horrible people driven by personal agendas. Their goals being control, money and power. We've become the frogs in the boiling water. I fear for my grandkids future unless we find a way to unite as citizens and take back our country. How the fuck did we ever get this low- this insane - that ANYONE would consider that shit for brains Palin as a good idea for VP? And just when I didn't think they could sink any lower - Trump!! They're like a fucking fungus.

    1. Anonymous4:18 AM

      This country does have leadership. President Obama, who has accomplished a tremendous lot in spite of a repub congress whose sworn cause is thwarting the uppity n**gger, no matter what he proposes, even if they originally wanted it.
      But it takes more than one leader to govern. For a plane to fly it takes two wings, even if in opposition, to move forward. The art of politics is compromise, something the repubs and Trump consider only for losers which they think they aren't.
      And America can sink MUCH lower -- if the repubs take the Presidency.

  10. Anonymous6:39 PM

    All John Oliver does is show America to itself, and America rarely likes what it sees.

    1. Yep, because most people are self-obsessed without being self-aware.

  11. Anonymous3:37 AM

    Hooray for John Oliver for talking about the very real problems in Rill Murkkuh right now.

  12. Yes, with Jon and Stephen gone, John Oliver is the only one left.

    I don't know when his contract is up, but the only hope the Daily Show has is if John's contract is up when Trevor is let go after a dismal however long his contract is and Comedy Central has enough money and pull to lure Jon Oliver away from HBO.

    I see no way Trevor Whoever will be able to compete with John Oliver now or Jon Stewart's legacy.

    I've got HBO Now so I'm starting to watch John Oliver. My only disappointment is that it's only once a week. I need my Jon Stewart fix.

    Thankfully Colbert starts TONIGHT! I hope he still keeps his political zingers and exposures.

    John is great but he doesn't have enough exposure on HBO. Even Comedy Central wasn't enough.

    We need a voice of truth to power on main stream networks. Prime Time would be wonderful but late night is the next best thing.


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