The Long Quest for a Conservative Daily Show

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The latest conservative Daily Show wannabe, B.S. of A from Glenn Beck's online TV channel, follows a lengthy list of failure in the right's attempt to mint a Jon Stewart of their own. Though host Brian Sack insists his show is nothing like Jon Stewart's satire, the show is an attempt to deliver humor to a conservative audience and sure looks a lot like Comedy Central's offering, mock news format and all. Sack isn't the first to try translating Stewart's success to the right, and we're guessing he won't be the last either. 

Back in 2007, Fox News offered the first Daily Show knock of, The 1/2 Hour News Hour which was a mock news program, complete with anchors "Jennifer Lange" and "Kent McNally" (real names: Jenn Robertson and Kurt Long) sitting at an oval desk reading news. Just like Stewart. Except according to critics it was not very funny. The Chicago Tribune called the humor "stale" and the Philadelphia Inquirer said it was "slow torture all by itself" and The New York Times called it a self-parody. Decide for yourself, it is pretty painful.

Although the show debuted to 1,478,000 viewers in March of 2008. After less than year it was canceled and replaced with the current program Red Eye, also a comedy program, but sans mock news format.

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Before then Fox reportedly had another, or maybe the same, Daily Show attempt in the works with right wing radio star Laura Ingraham as the host. Fox News Channel confirmed it was testing various pilots, including Ingraham's Watch This Right Now, what a Media Bistro tipster called "an absolutely terrible rip off of Daily Show" including a "music and video montage." Looks like Fox liked the 1/2 Hour News Hour better, picking it over Ingraham's show. 

And now we have B.S. of A, which has adopted The Daily Show format, too, with Sack sitting at a desk, reading off news-pegged jokes. It claims partisanship, but appearing on GBTV that's hard to believe. With only two episodes under it's belt, the fate of the show has yet to be determined. But Sack himself admits there's a reason these conservative comedy news shows don't work. "The notion of a Republican comedy show is fundamentally flawed," Sack told The Daily Beast's McKay Coppins. “There are some [conservative] issues that it’s really hard to draw humor out of." Maybe that's it. Or perhaps Jon Stewart's magic has something to do with it. It's embarrassing to us, but maybe you'll like it. Judge for yourself:

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.