recently came to The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, where he was greeted with thunderous applause. Because why not? He’s freaking John Oliver. He’s been off the air since November, so it was refreshing to see him back on TV, even as a guest. We’ve missed his take on current events, and he’s finally coming back to late night with Last Week Tonight returning to HBO this weekend.
Oliver and Colbert’s topics ranged from Trump and the recent Betsy Devos vote to Stephen Bannon and the travel ban. Oliver’s take on inauguration is vital, as he says, “It was like being tied to a train track and watching the train coming. And of course, Inauguration Day is the train hitting you, and you’re thinking, ‘Yep, that felt pretty much how I thought that was going to feel.’” He finds Bannon to be “a terrifying individual,” and says Betsy DeVos should be an inspiration to “school kids of America because she shows that they could be Secretary of Education one day. In fact, not just one day, they could do it now. They’re about as well-qualified now as she is, they’ve spent arguably longer in a public school.”
Colbert brought up the travel ban, noting that Oliver is not an American citizen, but in the country on a green card. When asked whether he was about getting kicked out of the country, Oliver gave a sobering reply, saying:
I am slightly concerned because I have an American wife, [and] an American son now. But who knows what’s enough? Having a green card used to be enough, but what we saw with that executive order on immigration, that debacle, now things are not what they were supposed to be. We held up translators, Afghan and Iraqi translator, at the border who have bled for a country that they’ve never visited, have sacrificed family members for this country. This president has done neither of those things, so it’s a little hard to swallow him telling people whether they should be a benefit to America or not.
It’s an honest response, and the shocking reality that we’re faced with these days. While it’s good to find the humor in these situations, many people are genuinely hurting, and that shouldn’t be forgotten. Watch Oliver and Colbert’s talk above, and if you’re looking for a little levity after, check out the pretty great promo for Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, which returns Sunday, Feb. 12, on HBO at 11 p.m. EST, right here.