Watch Jon Stewart’s First Daily Show Guest Appearance
Trevor Noah has been the host of The Daily Show for about eight weeks now, enough to settle into a rhythm and establish himself as the new permanent host. Which means the time is ripe for the ghost of Jon Stewart to stop haunting the halls of the show’s New York City studio and finally drop by as a guest.
His appearance on last night’s episode was a lovely affair, as Noah handled the drop-in with aplomb. He and Stewart launched into a bunch of bits—about whether the grizzled, salt-and-pepper-bearded former host was lost, and nodding to the Conan O’Brien/Jay Leno beef about late-night hosts taking their shows back.
But Stewart wasn’t just there to wish the new host well or satiate his craving for attention on TV. He actually had an important issue to discuss. Stewart has long been a vocal supporter of providing medical care to 9/11 first responders. During his tenure as host of The Daily Show, he devoted several episodes to dissecting why any politician would stand in the way of quickly and easily funding those types of government programs. And in the months since his retirement—in addition to booking a new gig with HBO—Stewart has pounded pavement on Capitol Hill to urge Congress to renew the parts of the Zadroga Act that expired in September.
It’s not a typical guest interview that takes up the third act on The Daily Show. Instead, it’s more akin to a correspondent takeover, with Stewart showing footage of his trip to Washington, taking politicos to task, and reconvening the panel of first responders he talked to in 2010 (though, bracingly, only one of them is still healthy enough to appear on television). Noah is doing fine as the host of The Daily Show, but getting one last chance to see Stewart swing in to show the new kid how angry political commentary is done was something to behold.