There are already plenty of current event comedy shows out there. What would set one apart and make it worth DVRing religiously?

Samantha Bee is one of the alumni "correspondents" from "The Daily Show." Like John Oliver, Stephen Colbert, and Larry Wilmore, Samantha perfected her chops in the ad-lib lab that Jon Stewart's show cultivated. She was one of the crowd favorites for a shot at replacing Stewart when he retired from the show, but it was not to be.


GIF from "The Daily Show."

So she got her own.

Like all wonderful things that sometimes spring from dreams deferred, here are the top three reasons you ought to be watching Samantha Bee's new show, "Full Frontal," which premiered last night.

1. She's off-the-charts hilarious.

This has to be the first reason to commit to any comedy show, but I know, I know: Humor is subjective and that's a big promise to make. I stand by it.

Samantha Bee has honed her delivery skills — the comedic timing, the physicality required for certain bits to work. The writing is piercing and targeted. And she takes pot shots at all sides: Democrats, Republicans, little old white-haired men, and steely, tenacious women. No one is off limits.

Here is a one-minute clip where she shines in making fun of the Democratic party presidential candidates:

2. She makes diversity in her writing team sound easy. Because it is.

A recurring issue for late-night show hosts is not only a lack of diversity in front of the camera (heyo, ya think we might have enough white male hosts?), but also a lack of it in the writers' room and production roles.

GIF from "The Daily Show."

But not "Full Frontal." Not only does the show already buck the trend by having a female host, but Bee and executive producer Jo Miller specifically set out to have a great mix of people from different walks of life on the writing team. They achieved it. The writing staff is 50/50 male to female, and a full quarter of them are people of color.

Bee pokes a little fun in her interview with the L.A. Times about how convoluted others tend to make it:

"There's a lot of conversations about the Oscars, and studios have a lot of sitdowns with think tanks, and they consider how they're going to get people of color into things and what they're going to do. Sometimes you just have to go, 'You're hired.' How about if you hire someone? How about if you just, say, greenlight something? You can do that too. You have the power to do that. Just hire somebody. Just start there and just hire people. You don't always have to go the same places to find your interns, OK?"

3. If you find yourself missing Jon Stewart, Samantha Bee may be the surrogate you're looking for.

It sometimes seems like, while other shows that have sprung from Stewart's laboratory of wit are also good, there's a certain something you can't put your finger on that they're missing. "Last Week Tonight" with John Oliver is one of the closest to that biting, withering, caustic yet reassuring je ne sais quoi, but he's on HBO (inaccessible to some), and he often does pretty deep dives.

I can't say that Samantha Bee's show will ever quite be all the things "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" once was, but its quick, accessible, easily-digestible bits and wickedly astute writing leaves viewers feeling a little less lonely.

The feeling I used to get when watching Jon Stewart break down the day's events was, "So I'm not the only one who noticed that — there are other people in the world who wonder what on earth is going on with these outrageous people!"

Just like Stewart, Bee makes the viewer feel a camaraderie, a likeness of mind, and relief at being able to have a hearty laugh at current events that might otherwise make one cry, or at least get permanent worry lines.

GIF from "The Daily Show."

Unlike the penis pumps she discovered Medicare pays for, "Full Frontal with Samantha Bee" doesn't suck even a little bit.

Image from "The Daily Show."

Joy

Man uses TikTok to offer 'dinner with dad' to any kid that needs one, even adult ones

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud.

Come for the food, stay for the wholesomeness.

Summer Clayton is the father of 2.4 million kids and he couldn’t be more proud. His TikTok channel is dedicated to giving people intimate conversations they might long to have with their own father, but can’t. The most popular is his “Dinner With Dad” segment.

The concept is simple: Clayton, aka Dad, always sets down two plates of food. He always tells you what’s for dinner. He always blesses the food. He always checks in with how you’re doing.

I stress the stability here, because as someone who grew up with a less-than-stable relationship with their parents, it stood out immediately. I found myself breathing a sigh of relief at Clayton’s consistency. I also noticed the immediate emotional connection created just by being asked, “How was your day?” According to relationship coach and couples counselor Don Olund, these two elements—stability and connection—are fundamental cravings that children have of their parents. Perhaps we never really stop needing it from them.


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Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

woman laying on bed

I was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) Inattentive Type about three years ago—I was a fully functioning adult, married with children before finding out that my brain worked a bit differently. Of course I've known that I functioned a bit differently than my friends since childhood. The signs were there early on, but in the '80s diagnosing a girl with ADHD just wasn’t a thing that happened.

Much of the early criteria for ADHD was written based on how it presented in males, more specifically, white male children, and I was neither. Women like me are being diagnosed more and more lately and it’s likely because social media has connected us in a way that was lacking pre- doom scrolling days.

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How do you explain the transition from the brown and orange aesthetic of the '70s to the dusty rose and forest green carpeting of the '80s if you didn't experience it? When I tell my kids there were smoking sections in restaurants and airplanes and ashtrays everywhere, they look horrified (and rightfully so—what were we thinking?!). The fact that we went places with our friends with no quick way to get ahold of our parents? Unbelievable.

One day I described the process of listening to the radio, waiting for my favorite song to come on so I could record it on my tape recorder, and how mad I would get when the deejay talked through the intro of the song until the lyrics started. My Spotify-spoiled kids didn't even understand half of the words I said.

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