Samantha Bee, American Hero, Finally Gets Her Own Show

Samantha Bee and Jason Jones appear onstage at The 2012 Comedy Awards in New York, Saturday, April 28, 2012. CREDIT: AP PHOTO/CHARLES SYKES
Samantha Bee and Jason Jones appear onstage at The 2012 Comedy Awards in New York, Saturday, April 28, 2012. CREDIT: AP PHOTO/CHARLES SYKES

Samantha Bee, The Daily Show’s longest-running correspondent, just landed her own show on TBS. TBS already announced that Bee will be creating and executive producing a scripted comedy series for the network with her husband, fellow funny person Jason Jones. Bee will host a new show that, according to a TBS release, “is being planned as a platform for Bee to apply her smart and satirical point of view to current and relevant issues.” Bee will host and, along with Jones, executive produce.

To be totally objective about it, this is absolutely the greatest news to come out of fake news maybe ever. Bee is a superstar. Her name, naturally, came up as a contender to take over Stewart’s seat when he announced he’d be leaving the show, but this is even more exciting. It opens up that Daily Show slot to yet another viable contender; hey, maybe it’ll go to Kristen Schaal and then we could have two satirical-takes-on-the-news shows helmed by women! It also means that TBS is gunning to become a serious player in late night, bringing on Bee and Jones to a slate that already includes Conan O’Brien.

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Bee joins a long line of Daily Show alum who have graduated from Jon Stewart’s School Of Comedic Excellence And Awesomeness to pursue their own programs/movies/dreams: Stephen Colbert, Steve Carrell, John Oliver, Ed Helms, Olivia Munn. And in over a decade on the Daily Show desk, Bee has provided some of the funniest, sharpest insights of them all. Relive her best progressive takes below.

On preventing rape in the military

It is next to impossible to make comedy out of something as horrifying and serious as sexual assault in the military. But Bee (years before Amy Schumer’s “Realistic Military Game” sketch found a way to get in on the joke) did it. Bee tells Stewart that women know exactly what they’re getting into when they enter male-dominated workplaces: “We expect to be paid slightly less and raped slightly more.”

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A field trip to the 2012 Republican National Convention: “My rights end where my uterus begins.”

When the Republicans formally adopted their 2012 platform, which was then celebrated by hardcore right-wingers as the most conservative in modern history, Bee headed to the RNC to find out how the GOP would handle the fact that Mitt Romney disagreed with a few key points, namely, that he believed women should be able to seek abortions in cases of rape or incest. Bee finds plenty of Republicans who cannot hear the irony in their claim that Mitt Romney “is allowed to choose” to do what he wants: “Who are we to tell someone how they should act?” Bee also, somehow, manages to keep a straight face while people tell her things like “the percentage of women who get pregnant from rape, it’s so small, it’s not impossible, but it’s close.” (She does correct his misinformed citizen: “It’s 32,000 a year.”) “It’s a really personal issue deciding what people’s personal issues are.”

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“The Nun-stream Media”

The largest organization of Catholic nuns in America were accused of “promoting radical feminist themes” by the Pope. “When you’re advocating for poor people, you’re not also telling them that abortion and gay marriage is a sin?” Bee asked one of these out-of-line nuns. These “femi-nun-zis” are all “nunsense,” and yes, Bee’s got like 27 more of those excellent nun puns.

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Anti-vaxxers and “stage-four science denial”

Bee takes on the conservatives who don’t believe in science and are responsible for the comeback of old school diseases like measles, mumps and rubella. Bee, at first, dismisses the whole thing as a “right-wing nutjob” problem but quickly discovers it’s a blue state issue: “It’s happening in my community? People who juice?” This is part of what made Bee (and, of course, The Daily Show) so great: a willingness to call everyone out on their bullshit, liberals and conservatives alike. “So there is a cure for science denial,” she finds. “Once Florida’s underwater, and we all have polio, things will get better!”

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Are Christians “bullied” by the LGBT community?

Bee interviews evangelical Christians who say they’ve been “persecuted” when “they say that homosexuality is wrong, or that homosexuals are sinful, just like adulterers, just like pedophiles, just like liars, just like thieves. I’m just informing them.” She spends a day with evangelical Christians to find out “how tough it is…n’t.” Turns out the actual examples of intolerance against the LGBT community are somehow more horrifying to the general public than the “hypothetical violence” against Christians.

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*We know Samantha Bee is Canadian, by the way. But Canadians can be American heroes, too. Just look at Tim Riggins.