Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert focused on the bravery of the people of Boston when the Comedy Central comics returned to their shows Tuesday night.
After both taking a pre-scheduled night off on Monday, “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” and “The Colbert Report” returned on Tuesday night — giving each show’s host his first opportunity to comment on the terrorist bombing of the Boston Marathon on Monday.
In their remarks, the comedians both focused on Boston, praising its people and its history.
“Once again, I have to start under just horrific events here in this country,” Stewart said to open “The Daily Show.”
“I really hate the fact that I can cross-reference my thoughts to so many other events that have occurred over the years of a similar ilk, so I’m not going to [do that],” he said. “I’m just going to say this to Boston: Thank you. Thank you for once again, in the face of gross inhumanity, inspiring and solidifying my belief in humanity and the people of this country. So thank you for everything that you’ve done.”
Stewart’s remarks on the bombing were brief. He concluded by noting that, as a New Yorker, he knows something about the experience of living through a terrorist attack. “As a city that knows the feeling of confusion, anger, and grief and chaos that comes with these events, I can tell you from personal experience you got a hell of a city going there and you’ve done an incredible job in the face of all this,” Stewart said. He then segued to a discussion on another subject — immigration reform.
Colbert also opened his show with remarks about the bombing. And for him, the usual challenge is: How does he stay “in character” as the bombastic “Stephen Colbert” of “The Colbert Report,” while also trying to be “serious” about a tragic news event.
On Tuesday night, he actually did work some comedy into his remarks — nothing tasteless (at least to us), but just some good-natured jibes about the Red Sox and the like.
“Hey, look before we begin,” Colbert said, ” I just want to take a moment to talk about the attack in Boston yesterday. Obviously, our thoughts and our prayers are with everybody there and, as the president said, we don’t know who did this, but they will be found and they will be brought to justice.”
“But whoever did this obviously did not know about the people of Boston because nothing these terrorists do is going to shake them, for Pete’s sake! Boston was founded by the pilgrims — a people so tough they had to buckle their g—– hats on!”
“It is the cradle of the American revolution,” Colbert said, “a city that withstood an 86-year losing streak [the Red Sox], a city that made it through the Big Dig, a construction project [to excavate and build a tunnel under much of Boston's city center] that backed up traffic for 16 years. I mean, there are commuters just getting home now!”