“I just want to Thank Comedy Central for this rare opportunity, and it really is a rare opportunity,” Larry Wilmore said at the top of "The Nightly Show," hours after Comedy Central announced this week would be its last.
Thanking the staff for “giving it their all these past 20 months, Wilmore said he especially wanted to thank the show’s fans. “People come up and they never say ‘Hey, nice show.' They say ‘thank you,'” he marveled.
“When we started the show we wanted to have conversations on some tough subjects. And we’ve had a lot of fun doing just that. Our show was at its best when news was at its worst. I’m just so proud we were able to take up real issues and hopefully say something powerful, while making people laugh... on some very dark days.”
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“My only regret is we won’t be around to cover this truly insane election season. Although, on the plus side, I must say this show going off the air has to only mean one thing, racism is solved. We did it! In fact, I think we have a photo from Ferguson that was taken earlier today,” he snarked as a picture of a black man and a cop riding a unicorn appeared on screen.
“You’re welcome, America,” he said.
A segment savaging GOP White House nominee Donald Trump and his surrogates followed. Hours earlier, when his show’s cancellation was announced, Wilmore said he was “saddened and surprised we wont be covering this crazy election or 'The Unblackening' as weve coined it. And keeping it 100, I guess I hadnt counted on 'The Unblackening' happening to my time slot as well."
With that in mind, Wilmore dropped the Trump comedy on Monday's episode, to say, “Donald Trump has stopped being funny, stopped being outrageous, he’s stopped being politically incorrect. He’s just downright dangerous.”
“And, the worst of it is, he’s just a liar. And I don’t want to hear ‘Hillary Clinton is a liar too!’ That is a false equivalency... Hillary Clinton is a very smart and capable politician, who many people don’t trust because she spends too much time lawyer-ing her words so she doesn’t lose votes, instead of telling us what she actually…thinks. Donald Trump is a psychopathic narcissist who not only has the hands of an infant, he has the mind of one….Donald Trump is an existential threat to America.”
After the break, Wilmore’s show addressed Wilmore’s most controversial statement of his tenure as late-night host, though it was not made on the show, rather when he addressed President Obama at the last White House Correspondents Dinner.
Who would’ve thought, when Wilmore delivered that button-pushing line to say so-long to Obama as POTUS at last April’s Nerd Prom, Wilmore would be the first to leave office?
At that event, Wilmore said that when he was growing up, "a black man was thought by his mere color not good enough to lead a football team and now, to live in your time, Mr. President, when a black man can lead the entire free world, words alone can do me no justice. So, Mr. President, if Im going to keep it 100: Yo, Barry, you did it, my n---a. You did it."
Monday's cancellation announcement was a bit of a surprise, coming 11 months after Comedy Central announced it had picked up "The Nightly Show" through the end of 2016.