9:52pm PT by Rick Porter
Jon Stewart's 'Daily Show' Farewell: Watch Stephen Colbert and Bruce Springsteen Pay Tribute
Jon Stewart's swan song on The Daily Show Thursday was, as expected, full of familiar faces and tributes to the departing host. But just because it was expected doesn't mean it wasn't effective.
Watch some of the highlights of his final show below.
The Band Is Back Together
Stewart opened the show by referencing Thursday night's "just wrapped" Republican presidential debate — which, in fact, was still going on Fox News (the perils of pre-taping). He threw to a remote with current correspondents Jessica Williams, Jordan Klepper and Hasan Minhaj, but soon realized that wasn't really enough people to cover the 10-candidate spectacle properly.
Cue former correspondents Aasif Mandvi, Al Madrigal, John Hodgman, Lewis Black, Kristen Schaal, Samantha Bee and Steve Carell, who revealed he never actually left the show.
Out of Character
The parade of former correspondents continued with Larry Wilmore, Olivia Munn, original Daily Show-ers Vance DeGeneres and Mo Rocca, Ed Helms, John Oliver — even former host Craig Kilborn, who joked that Stewart had finally been canceled. Last of call came Stephen Colbert, who at first offered a very "Stephen Colbert"-like reference to The Lord of the Rings before segueing into a heartfelt thank you to Stewart.
"We owe you because we learned from you," Colbert says. "... You were infuriatingly good at your job, OK? ... All of us are better at our jobs because we got to watch you do yours."
Smell Something, Say Something
Stewart's final scripted bit was one last camera three rant about, as he said in unbleeped glory, "bullshit." He urged viewers to recognize the kinds of bullshit out there. He saved special scorn for what he called "the bullshit of infinite possibility," describing it thus: "We can't take action on climate change till everyone in the world agrees gay marriage vaccines won't cause our children to marry goats — who are gonna come for our guns."
But there is hope:
Here It Is ...
Stewart closed with an emotional thanks to his co-workers and the Daily Show audience, who he said kept him going on days he felt like the show wasn't all there. He also referenced Bruce Springsteen's notion of having a career-long conversation with his fans before introducing "my moment of Zen" — a closing performance by Springsteen and the E Street Band of "Land of Hope and Dreams" and "Born to Run."