Satire And The Colbert Report

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Satire exposes and criticizes errors of an individual or a society by using irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose its stupidity or shortcomings. These comedies are important because they shed light on serious topics that would otherwise be too uncomfortable to talk about. Two television shows that exhibit these characteristics well are Larry David’s, Curb your enthusiasm, and Stephen Colbert’s, The Colbert Report. Satire in television shows can be used to entertain and inform by getting personal to connect with the audience, provoking meaningful thought, and make fun of the absurd. Some comedies rely on being able to say things that you wouldn’t normally be able to say to someone in real life without either hurting their feelings or being…show more content…
Despite these advantages, some have argued that political satire encourages cynicism, trivializes politics, and promotes a narrow point of view and can lead to skepticism. However, since regular news is pointed and can omit relevant information, satire is for entertainment, and is less geared toward bias. Per an article in the Columbia Journalism Review, viewers of satire are more likely to watch and read traditional news sources in addition to satire news. This article references research that suggests that political humor, “increases knowledge of current events, leads to further information-seeking on related topics, and increases viewer interest in and attention paid to politics and news.” The more informed audience has more opportunities to discuss and share educated opinions and begin discussion. Satire also allows an argument for both sides and shows that sometimes ‘experts’ can be wrong. In October 2013, for example, Jon Stewart hosted Kathleen Seblius, The US secretary of Health and Human services, and criticized Obamacare for delaying compliance with the bill for big businesses but not individuals. He analyzed the fact that these businesses can lobby for their interests while individuals cannot. Although some coverage of this issue made news sources, Stewart presented it at length with an authentic source and in a comedic and memorable fashion. He caught viewers’ attention…show more content…
Television shows like Jon Stewart’s, The Daily Show, and Stephan Colbert’s, The Colbert Report are two examples of how using satire in comedy can illustrate the errors that are made in our society so that we can learn from them. One way in which they are successful at doing this is by getting personal with their audience and talking about issues that viewers can identify with and pointing out the absurd. In one episode of The Colbert Report, he mocked Fox News anchors for saying that women can get the same treatments from Walgreens as you can from Planned Parenthood, such as breast exams and pap

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