Samantha Bee Is Changing the Late Night Game in the Best Way
Samantha Bee became a corespondent on The Daily Show in 2003. She was the only female correspondent on the show until Kristin Schaal joined in 2008. For many female comedians – or female anythings, really – we’re often the only woman in the room.
I hate to say it, but some woman tend to prefer it that way. I’m sure you’ve seen “the only woman in the room syndrome”before in a professional or social situation. This is my own term for women who “don’t have any girlfriends” and generally prefer that there be no other women or “competition” in the room. Women that possess this characteristic are the worst. Samantha Bee is not that type. She is changing the late night game in the best way. She is giving women a loud voice on social and political issues on the grandest of scales as far as American in concerned: television.
This come-up story can best be told through pictures. Before "Full Frontal" first aired, Vanity Fair released this gem of an image for their piece inaccurately titled “Why Late-Night Television Is Better than Ever.”
To which Samantha Bee responded with an upgraded version:
.@VanityFair BETTER http://t.co/EfPbTQ3qZ8— Samantha Bee (@Samantha Bee) 1442251831
Much better indeed. Not only is this HILARIOUS, but it’s a clear message. “I WILL DOMINATE.” And that she has.
She’s not doing it alone. Like every late night personality, Bee has a team of writers that aid in giving the show a distinct voice and making the audience laugh. Bee’s writing room is unique in that it’s made up of 50% women, and 30% people of color. This is a first. When asked how she achieved this remarkable feat during an interview at the 92nd Street Y in NYC, Bee replied:
“In the entertainment industry in particular, there are seminars and … work groups about creating diversity when, really, the fucking thing you have to do is just hire people. It’s not really the most complicated transaction. Find some diverse people and actually give them jobs.”
Both Nike and Bee are on to something… just do it! "Full Frontal" has even developed a mentorship program that will launch in June. Selected applicants will be able to learn the ropes of the late night arena will keeping their day jobs. Although it is unpaid, it’s part-time and allows the participants to work full time while enrolled, working around the participants’ schedule. Most programs aren’t as flexible. This is extremely valuable for someone to can’t learn the skills because mom or dad have a friend in the business.
This program is just a small way Bee is giving women and people of color a stronger comedic voice. "Full Frontal"’s content is direct and empowering. She doesn’t shy away from any controversy and she doesn’t even focus heavily on “female themes.” She attacks every issue with the help of a diverse writing staff and therefore presents more informed and passionate opinions. Here is how she ended a segment about how the government is failing to help poor families buy diapers:
“Oh my God, conservatives, make up your minds about poor babies. We thought you wanted them to be born. Why else would you oppose free contraception, wage jihad against Planned Parenthood, fight the FDA on Plan B, and make abortion as unattainable for poor women as a ticket to "Hamilton." Well, like it or not, there are a lot of poor babies, and it seems all you got for them is the same useless advice you’re giving their mothers: Keep your legs crossed.”
Her humor is brutal and it’s beautiful and it’s FUNNY. Preach, Bee, preach!