Jon Stewart

The JV Club Ep. 326: 1st Boy Summer - Bassem Youssef

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Show: 
The JV Club
Guests: 
Bassem Youssef

Boys of Summer begins with a heart-surgeon-turned-controversial-Egyptian-ex-pat: the fascinating and funny Bassem Youssef! From high school biology to cardiology, from watching Jon Stewart to becoming what some call Stewart’s Middle Eastern counterpart, episode 326 should leave you inspired!

Hosted by Janet Varney.

Edited by Julian Burrell for Maximum Fun.

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: Jena Friedman

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Jena Friedman

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in iTunes or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.


Photo: Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images

Jena Friedman On Writing For The The Daily Show And Breaking Into The Stand-Up Comedy World

WARNING: This interview contains discussions about difficult subjects including sexual assault and miscarriage. If you're sensitive to these kinds of topics, we figured we'd give you a heads up.

Jena Friedman's a comic, a filmmaker, and a writer. She created and hosts a show on Adult Swim. It's called Soft Focus. It's really funny, just like her all of her comedy, but it also talks about some very difficult, sometimes painful topics.

She got her start writing for Late Show with David Letterman. Then moved on to the The Daily Show with Jon Stewart where she was a field producer, producing some of the shows best pieces with folks like Samantha Bee and Al Madrigal. Her segments covered the news of the day with a satirical edge.

Now on her new show, Jena's in front of the camera and the segments can get very, very uncomfortable. She interviews an eccentric billionaire, surrounded by his armed guards. She talks with an ex-cop who was caught plotting to kidnap and eat his wife. She submits male gamers to a VR simulation of unwanted sexual contact.

Jena constantly pushes boundaries in her work. It's political, it's deadpan, kind of abrasive, too. She has a talent in finding the darkest flaws in our world and talking about them in a way that cuts very deep.

In this conversation, she also gets candid about why women still have a hard time breaking into the stand-up comedy world.

You can watch both of Jena Friedman's Soft Focus specials on Adult Swim.

Al Madrigal on The Daily Show

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Our long-time friend (really - he booked me and Jordan a Prank the Dean gig once!) Al Madrigal has joined the Daily Show as Senior Latino Correspondent. This was his (very funny) first segment on the show.

Bravo to one of comedy's top guys!

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