Tuesday, August 16, 2016

No More Nightly Show

I'm blogging past my bedtime:

"Larry Wilmore’s ‘Nightly Show’ canceled by Comedy Central" y Matthew Gilbert Globe Staff  August 15, 2016

The presidential campaign is building to a head, but Larry Wilmore — who has labeled this election “The Unblackening” — won’t be sticking around on late-night TV to comment on it. Comedy Central has canceled “The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore,” with the last episode airing Thursday at 11:30 p.m.

Kent Alterman, the president of Comedy Central, told The New York Times that the show “hasn’t resonated” after a year and a half on the air. The timing of the cancellation, Alterman said, was about questions of contract renewals and not about the election. Chris Hardwick’s playful “@midnight” will fill in for “The Nightly Show,” with a full-time 11:30 p.m. replacement coming next year.

“I’m really grateful to Comedy Central, Jon Stewart, and our fans to have had this opportunity,” Wilmore said in a statement. “But I’m also saddened and surprised we won’t be covering this crazy election or ‘The Unblackening’ as we’ve coined it. And keeping it 100, I guess I hadn’t counted on ‘The Unblackening’ happening to my time slot as well.”

Wilmore’s show, which premiered in January 2015, has been drawing significantly lower ratings than its predecessor. “The Colbert Report,” hosted by Stephen Colbert, averaged 1.7 million viewers in its final year, while Wilmore averaged 922,000 last year and 776,000 this year. It hasn’t helped that Wilmore’s lead-in, “The Daily Show With Trevor Noah,” has also struggled to catch on with viewers. With Jon Stewart, “The Daily Show” averaged 2.1 million, but with Noah it averages 1.3 million. 

I haven't watched "The Daily Show" in years. I stopped watching it when Stewart was still hosting. At a certain point, it's not funny anymore. We are talking real harm done over an extended period of time and it's gone beyond joking about such odious creatures. Same with the self-promoting shill Colbert.

Wilmore’s distinctive perspective will be missed, as he took on many of the racial issues currently in the news, not least of all the Black Lives Matter movement. He never courted viral fame with Web-ready segments, and in the long run that may have hurt his reach.

I won't be missing a thing.

Wilmore, who hosted the White House Correspondents’ Dinner this year, won’t be jobless after his show is gone. He’s an executive producer of ABC’s “Black-ish” and HBO’s upcoming Issa Rae comedy “Insecure.”

The premise of Black-ish is a mixed marriage between a black man and a Jewish woman, and it's really funny to see the fireworks.


UPDATE: A sad day for late night