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HBO to air Jon Stewart’s first standup special in 21 years

on July 26, 2017, 8:25pm

HBO is bringing Jon Stewart back to television with two new comedy specials set to air later this year. The former Daily Show host will be performing his first stand-up special since the 1996 show Jon Stewart: Unleavened (which also aired on HBO) as well as hosting the latest edition of the Night of Too Many Stars all-star benefit for NEXT For AUTISM.

“I’m really thrilled to be able to return to stand-up on HBO,” Stewart said of the upcoming performances. “They’ve always set the standard for great stand-up specials. Plus, I can finally use up the last of the Saddam Hussein jokes left over from my first special.”

The Night of Too Many Stars benefit will be shown live on HBO from The Theater at Madison Square Garden on November 18th, and promises to once again be a star-studded affair. “We’re excited to bring Jon to the network with this pair of specials,” said HBO programming president Casey Bloys. “We’ve all missed his uniquely thoughtful brand of humor.” Past editions of the benefit have featured appearances from Katy Perry, Steve Carell, Louis C.K., Tina Fey, Tom Hanks, George Clooney, Chris Rock and others.

The announcement should help quell the disappointment fans felt when Stewart and HBO’s planned “Onion-like” animated satirical cable news show was scrapped back in May. Details on the stand-up special are scant at this point, but one has to imagine those missing Stewart’s razor sharp and politically charged wit will be provided a take or ten on the orange pall of terribleness that has overtaken the White House of late. Under Stewart’s guidance from 1999 to 2015, The Daily Show won 23 Emmys and two Peabody Awards, launched the careers of John Oliver and Stephen Colbert into the stratosphere and evolved from a satirical take on the news to a prime source of political opinions for many on the left.

Speaking at the Television Critics Association’s summer press tour, Bloys teased further projects involving Stewart — though, another late-night series appears unlikely. “I’d be happy if he would, but I don’t think that’s where his mind is right now,” Bloys noted.