The time has come. Since the news broke of The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore‘s cancellation on Monday morning, the encroaching deadline of Thursday’s last show was hovering just slightly overhead. Now the blow has landed, and we were treated to one last, special episode.
Larry Wilmore took his cancellation in stride, make remarks about the cancellation in his usual heartfelt but sardonic manner. “It’s never easy when your TV show gets cancelled,” Wilmore stated on the show, “but for me, there has been a silver lining: all the free booze!”
The presents, coming from Wilmore’s late-night cohorts and friends, were only part of the gifts he received that night. Jon Stewart (who had obviously hosted The Daily Show while Wilmore was a correspondent) emerged from his media absence to say goodbye to another Comedy Central talk show.
According to TVline.com, Mr. Stewart had this to say to Mr. Wilmore:
“I just decided to stop by and tell you I love you. And may I say something else: Thank you! . . . A very wise man once said to me, ‘Do not confuse cancelation with failure.’ And I took that to heart. So I will say this: What you, my friend, were tasked to do, you have done — and done beautifully. You gave voice to underserved voices in the media arena. It was a show that was raw and poignant and funny and smart and all of those things. You did it from scratch. . . . You took something and got better every [bleepin’] day. . . .You started a conversation that was not on television when you began it. . . . What you don’t realize is that you walk out of this room, and that conversation doesn’t end.”
Who is the strong one who can hold back tears when Jon Stewart gets emotional? Is there such a person?
The words are even more poignant as we realize that the man who said those wise words were spoken to Mr. Stewart by none other than David Letterman, during his appearance on the last episode of The Jon Stewart Show in 1995. You can watch Letterman’s own farewell to Jon Stewart’s show around the 13 minute mark:
As for Mr. Stewart’s words on The Nightly Show, Mr. Wilson himself appeared to be highly affected by his words, as one would expect.
Thursday’s show was undoubtedly an ending; The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore will never have any new episodes for us. But Mr. Stewart’s speech points out something huge: there will still be Larry Wilmore. His voice won’t fade away after the show is over. He affected people’s lives by the way he ran his show, and Mr. Stewart’s final thoughts on the matter prove that there will always be a place in the late-night hall of fame for The Nightly Show.
For those of you who have the emotional stamina to watch Stewart’s entire speech, you can do so here:
As for Mr. Wilmore, the final seconds of his show said it all. Looking straight into the camera, Mr. Wilmore said confidently, “I’m not done yet.”