For years, especially before and after The Colbert Report was a thing, Comedy Central struggled to find ways to film the crucial post-Daily Show time slot. The irreverent news broadcast has been one of the network’s biggest and most high-profile hits for a long time, but what could possibly live up to it well enough to make use of the coveted half-hour right after it airs? Well, Comedy Central seems to have finally found an answer, and, frankly, we’re surprised it took this long to come up with this particular solution: As announced today in a press release, The Daily Show is expanding to 45-minute episodes for the first time in its storied 24-year history. Not even Jon Stewart dared to pull that off on a regular basis.
The press release says that Trevor Noah’s Daily Show will go to 45 minutes starting tonight and will stay at that length “moving forward”—which we assume means even after things start to go back to normal post-pandemic. The press release also naturally toots The Daily Show’s horn a little bit, saying that it’s been the “first late-night stop for high profile guests” like Dr. Anthony Fauci and noting that it’s both the highest-rated late night show among young viewers and the “most-engaging” late night show (whatever that means and however that’s measured). Basically, The Daily Show is huge, especially the The Daily Social Distancing Show variation that Noah’s been doing, and Comedy Central is finally—finally—giving it some room to expand.