Published Jul 29, 2018Roy Wood Jr. is having a great ride. He is, after all, a Senior Daily Show Correspondent. He's also had a crack at the elusive sitcom as a cast member in Sullivan & Sons, something most comedians only dream off. But none of this is mentioned when he starts his JFL set in Montreal.
He begins by telling us he's chuffed to be here; it's nice to get out of America for a while. But increasingly, he's worried about "losing his seat"; "In two weeks I might be taking your order at Tim Hortons," he says to someone in the front. And if there's a positive to be taken from Trump's America, it's that its citizens are newly humble when traveling abroad. Now they're embarrassed, and find it in themselves to "shut the fuck up".
This is the political humour you might expect from him. But he really seems to soar when he strays from that space. He tells us he just did San Diego's Comic Con, and got in to a discussion about who the best superhero is. Is it Superman, pillar of strength? Wolverine? Too Canadian. Nope, it's Captain America. "He's a white dude from the 1940s who accidentally gets frozen. They thaw him out in present day and goes right back into fighting crime … with a BLACK sidekick!" A white man wakes up 70 years later and doesn't ask a single question about desegregation. Cap is righteous to the core.
And on black superheroes? He touches on Luke Cage — a guy who's bulletproof, super strong, he should be fighting aliens with Iron Man. But in black neighbourhoods, shit's so bad you never get to leave. "He has to stay in Harlem!" His entire crime-fighting career has been confined to eight city blocks.
He keeps going on the nerd tip, lamenting about his fondness for classic video games. His favourite is Street Fighter, and he would've loved to be in that meeting that occurred between the Q-Bert and Donkey Kong pitches. "Okay. So there are two karate motherfuckers in a fish market." For those of us familiar, it's a great point. There's an epic battle happening, and people are basically buying groceries. "I'll get some crab legs" — observes karate fireballs — "and a pound of snapper."
It's a nice departure from what most of us might know of his material, which is usually anchored to politics on the Daily Show. If you happen to "lose your seat," Roy, we've got one for you here.