‘The Problem With Jon Stewart’ review: Stewart gets serious and goes deep into advocacy journalism for Apple TV+

Stewart — who has already adopted this position together with his crusade on behalf of 9/11 first responders — has capitalized on the liberty that his fame affords him so as to take this leap, doing one thing that is the equal of serving steamed greens to these followers who may need tuned in anticipating salty snacks. He considerably sheepishly acknowledges as a lot throughout segments during which he strategizes together with his producers, a few of whom hail from information backgrounds that talk to this system’s hybrid nature.

Nonetheless, Stewart has at all times practiced a type of journalism, utilizing comedy because the supply system. At “The Every day Present,” that meant reaching viewers who may not in any other case be heavy information customers, dressing up present occasions in a extra engaging package deal.

By transferring to the much less commercially pressured realm of streaming, Stewart has disbursed with the pretense of spooning out sugar to assist the messages go down. The not-unreasonable takeaway from that’s having hung out surveying the state of the US and the world, the comedian — who can not help however joke at occasions in asides and whereas speaking to company and newsmakers — has decided the stakes are too dire to spend a lot time clowning round.

Scheduled on an every-other-week foundation with a associated podcast, Stewart opens with a subject close to and expensive to his coronary heart, specializing in veterans whose health claims associated with “burn pits” have fallen on deaf ears with the US authorities.

“We help our troops, except they really want help,” Stewart says, continuing to interview struggling army personnel together with their members of the family, adopted by a really pointed sit-down with present US Secretary of Veterans Affairs Denis McDonough.

A second episode really achieves a greater steadiness of what “The Problem” hopes to turn out to be, inspecting probably the most disingenuous cries of “Freedom!” in response to vaccine and masks mandates, earlier than shifting to the drift towards authoritarianism within the US. Stewart interviews those that have witnessed the method firsthand in Venezuela, the Philippines and the Center East, together with journalist Maria Ressa and Bassem Youssef, who was as soon as dubbed the “Egyptian Jon Stewart.”
Stewart has at all times exhibited first-rate interviewing chops, and with episodes working about 45 minutes, he has ample time to show them. This present follows a never-realized plan for a sequence at HBO, whose former chief Richard Plepler helped convey the venture to Apple, which clearly gave the comedian all of the inventive latitude he may have wished. (CNN and HBO are each a part of WarnerMedia.)

The obvious drawback with “The Problem” is its emphasis on righting and exposing wrongs comes on the expense of being entertaining, no less than in the way in which individuals have come to anticipate. The general impact brings to thoughts the historic resistance when a comedic actor segues into dramatic roles, and the pushback from elements of the viewers figures to be comparable.

Stewart has anticipated that potential criticism and appears content material to plead responsible to it. Having spent years eliciting laughs, in “The Problem” Stewart has completely different priorities, embarking, nonetheless lofty it would sound, on a search for options.

“The Problem With Jon Stewart” premieres Sept. 30 on Apple TV+.

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