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Jon Stewart takes back John Oliver’s show

Jon Stewart returned to "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" last night after a twelve week hiatus from the Emmy Award-winning "fake news" program that bears his name. Stewart spent the summer in Jordan directing "Rosewater," a film adaptation of the book "Then They Came for Me: A Family’s Story of Love, Captivity and Survival" by Maziar Bahari and Aimee Molloy.

Mercifully, Stewart & Co. kept the fanfare to a reasonable minimum. "The Colbert Report's" Stephen Colbert joined Oliver and "Daily Show" correspondent Jessica Williams in a mildly funny opening sketch about reversing the effects suffered by the now-bearded Stewart during his time in the Middle East. He eventually returned clean-shaven to his desk, recapped the top news stories he'd missed with fill-in host John Oliver, and dug into the difficult business of making people laugh about Syria. His concluding interview with Andrew Harper, head of the United Nations' relief efforts in Jordan, was somber but not out of character for the show, which regularly shifts to a more grave tone for serious topics.

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