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Occupy SMA


By Liz Mestres

While Trump has few, if any, skills or accomplishments that we can applaud, he does have an infinite capacity to provide material for political comedy TV shows. His Mexico wall idea, for example, has proved to be an excellent target for satire. It is widely noted that Saturday Night Live’s ratings have soared following Alec Baldwin’s magnificent impersonation of Donald Trump and Melissa McCarthy’s hilarious rendition of Sean Spicer. Trump’s tweeted objections have only boosted the show’s popularity. Next Monday, Occupy San Miguel will examine the impact of political comedy. Does political comedy provoke people to think outside of the box?

Or does it just provide a bit of laughter before bedtime that allows people to sleep without nightmares?

Of course it’s not all about Trump. We need to remember that late night political comedy has been well supplied with material for quite some time. Those of us from the 60s generation can recall That Was the Week that Was, a possible inspiration for the title of John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight. Saturday Night Live has been around since 1975 when Chevy Chase launched a new mode of presidential impersonations with his depictions of Gerald Ford.

At times, political comedy comes close to being an alternate media source and a serious vehicle for media criticism. Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show has made extensive use of footage from news programs – especially Fox – to satirize the mainstream media and the political scene more broadly. Comedian John Oliver, while maintaining that he is a comedian and not a journalist, admits that his show carries out rigorous fact checking and frequently provides in depth background material that helps demystify such topics as corporate mergers and acquisitions, militarization, and the obesity crisis.

This week at Occupy, we will screen a selection of late-night comedy performances followed by discussion. Please join us on Monday. Our events are free and open to all.


Meeting, Film & Discussion

Occupy SMA

A Look at Late-Nite Political Comedy

Mon, Nov 13, 1pm

Quinta Loreto Hotel

TV room

Loreto 15, Centro




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