“Daily Show” heir Trevor Noah addressed the backlash-inciting tweets about Jewish people and fat women that surfaced in March. Sort of. Noting the incident was a sign of the evolution of Twitter culture, “I was glad people had to go back two years to find those tweets and they didn’t find something from that day,” he said at Comedy Central’s TCA presentation in Los Angeles Wednesday. “Twitter has changed. It goes through phases. It became the room for jokes. Now, Twitter has become largely a negative place.
“What was interesting is you saw the change in the conversation go from, ‘Is this guy offensive?’ to ‘What is comedy and what is this role in our society?’ I think that’s a great conversation that came from it,” he added.
Noah made his press debut earlier in the week with a standup show at The Broad in Santa Monica, where he put his unique story-telling lens on topics ranging from racism to terrorism. As for plans when he slides into Jon Stewart’s chair on September 28, Noah said aside from providing his own commentary on the news, he’ll continue the tradition of commenting on news outlets’ coverage of the story du jour. But he doesn’t consider himself a member of the media.
“I’m not in the news business, I’m in the comedy business. That’s the best thing Jon left me with. It’s a comedic view on the news, as opposed to news with a comedic view. I’m not worried about people taking it the wrong way if we’re delivering it in the right way.”
Noah said his biggest pressure is living up to the potential Stewart sees in him. But he assured the room that he will have his own voice. Comparing his upbringing and world view with that of Stewart, he said, “I am a 31-year-old half-black, half-white South African who’s lived in a America for a few years on and off. Jon would comment on things from a very different place than I would because I’m more of an outsider to that world than he is.”