Jon Stewart criticized the media for sensationalizing the January bodycam footage of Tyre Nichols. On the latest episode of Stewart’s podcast, The Problem With Jon Stewart, the comic, political commentator and author discussed Nichols’ death with writer/comedian Kasaun Wilson.
Wilson mentioned that he attempted to avoid watching the footage on social media, noting that it was inescapable on television. “Now CNN is playing the video — I wish y’all would stop,” he said. “Y’all just playing it in restaurants and McDonald’s and Wednesdays.”
“Are they playing it like wallpaper, are they doing that thing where it’s in the box and the announcer is talking about something else and you’re just seeing it over and over again,” Stewart responded. “Are you fucking serious? They’re playing it like Fox plays spring break footage.”
The two went on to discuss that protests over the weekend were largely “peaceful and civil,” leading to previously unearthed footage of the Memphis incident being aired. Wilson also added that the Memphis Police Department crudely teased the bodycam footage before its release on Friday, January 27. “It was kind of like a Netflix drop where they were like, ‘Check us out at midnight the video’s dropping, we got you!'” he said.
“The anticipation leading up to that, I just felt like the only time you see that is when Taylor Swift is about to put out a ‘Taylor’s Version,’” Stewart responded. “Like the news media was almost giddy and salivating over [it]. They were cutting into programs, you know, ‘Coming up, the video’s gonna be coming out in two hours, and then after that, I’m sure we’re gonna be able to get you some real shit. Like we’re gonna get you some real shit.’
On Thursday (February 2), CNN reported that up to 20 hours of footage related to Nichols’ fatal beating has yet to be released. One day prior, Nichols’ memorial service was held in Memphis, with guest speakers including Vice President Kamala Harris and the Rev. Al Sharpton.
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