The Daily Show is sinking in ratings with new host Trevor Noah. Progressives who would normally count on the show to tell them what to think during an important election cycle seem lost without Jon Stewart.
Slate sees this as a big problem:
Why Are Americans Ignoring Trevor Noah?
Trevor Noah has been in the hosting chair for four months now, and his show has settled into a groove. If you tune into any episode, you will find something familiar enough, good for a chuckle but never a belly laugh, let alone a revelation. Noah could hardly be more charming; he is at ease in front of the camera, generous with his dimples. The writing staff, sans former head writer Elliott Kalan and Jo Miller, who left for Samantha Bee’s forthcoming new series, remained after Stewart’s departure, staving off any overt catastrophes.*
Noah’s Daily Show has been attracting fewer than 1 million viewers in the all-important 18–49 demo, down more than 30 percent compared with Stewart’s last quarter. (Though not compared with his last year, in which Stewart’s demo ratings were roughly comparable. Stewart’s total viewership was significantly higher than Noah’s.) But if you watch The Daily Show night after night, you get the sense that the writers have adjusted their tactics for a very different kind of host—a Potemkin Jon Stewart, someone smooth and ingratiating who is reaching for unconverted viewers, instead of an inveterate political satirist preaching to the deeply informed.
The truth is that the left always saw Jon Stewart’s Daily Show as a political weapon, but that knife has been dulled.
What a shame.