For his latest trick, John Oliver has tackled how internet virality is killing journalism. He correctly indicts his own show as a cog in the machine that is dismantling local news, and now you’re reading about it on one of the million news sites to post the clip. It’s all very meta.
Lin-Manuel Miranda, the creator of the Broadway musicals In the Heights and Hamilton, appeared on yesterday’s edition of Last Week Tonight to address Puerto Rico’s crippling debt crisis. Following host John Oliver’s lengthy introduction about the situation’s manifold origins, Miranda, who was born to Puerto Rican parents in New York City, deployed his prodigious rapping skills to directly implore U.S. officials to grant the American territory immediate economic relief by allowing its government to restructure its debt.
Around 6,000 federal prisoners were scheduled for release this month after a loosening of the harsh mandatory minimum sentences that came with three decades of successful and definitely not futile War on Drugs. It’s the largest single prison release in U.S. history. But, as John Oliver explained on his show Sunday night, they’re about to encounter the shitty, broken process of prison re-entry.
As every website has been attempting to inform you since 2012, copy-pasting several paragraphs of dense legal voodoo onto your Facebook wall does not somehow exempt you from the terms of service that bind all Facebook users. If Facebook decides it wants to start using your content in some way you don’t like, your legal options include: don’t put that content on Facebook. Or: stop using Facebook altogether. If you won’t believe us, please believe John Oliver.
A few weeks ago on Last Week Tonight, John Oliver exposed televangelists—evangelical preachers whose sole purpose is to get on TV and ask for funds for their ministries—who prey on the sick, poor, and desperate in order to line their own pockets, funding lavish lifestyles that include mansions, airplanes, cars, vacations, and more.
John Oliver, HBO’s best critic of America’s broken-ass political and economic systems since The Wire, turned his attention this week to one of the brokenest-ass systems of all: the way we handle bail for people accused of crimes.
Earlier this week, Ed Snowden sat down with John Oliver in what turned out to be his first real, substantive interview since his stint in Russia began. Now, Last Week Tonight has released an extra clip in which Snowden offers us all a few, handy security tips. First and foremost: Your password probably sucks.
John Oliver took Last Week Tonight to Russia this week to sit down with the best person to explain the spate of confusing government surveillance programs and how they affect the dick pics we send: Edward Snowden himself.
On Sunday's Last Week Tonight, John Oliver devoted his "How Is This Still a Thing?" segment to the timely topic of Daylight Saving Time, which is ruining your morning as we speak. At least it will help you later, right? Nope, not really! How is this still a thing?
Jon Stewart's Rosewater, the directorial debut that took him away from The Daily Show this summer and set the stage for the ascension of John Oliver, is finally out. And, because Stewart wanted to talk about his movie on the show, he recused himself as host and summoned Oliver back to the non-premium cable desk.
A "salmon cannon" has been deployed in Washington state to launch fish safely over a hydroelectric dam, and it's giving John Oliver hope for the future. If we can use the cannon to fix the salmon-spawning process (that we broke in the first place, but whatever), who knows what else we can achieve with this wondrous invention?
You don't need John Oliver to tell you that state lotteries—or, as your mom calls them, "the stupidity tax"—are a bad deal, but you may not have realized the extent to which they suck.
State legislatures: their campaign ads may be completely ludicrous comedy goldmines, and even some of the incumbents are unhinged lunatics, but with Congress basically deadlocked, they're the only place shit gets done. John Oliver spent nearly 20 minutes mocking these buffoons last night, and explaining why you need to vote anyway.
On Last Week Tonight Sunday, John Oliver noted that Lowe's has introduced robot employees to help customers find whatever they're looking for—which is precisely not the point of home improvement store employees. They're there to keep your marriage from collapsing before your eyes in the bathroom fixtures section.
There are lots of scary things about Halloween: Ghosts (human), ghosts (animal), zombies (real), and throngs of college students (drunk). But, as John Oliver points out, perhaps the most terrifying is the $2 billion worth of candy (plus some Necco wafers) that Americans will consume in celebration of the holiday.