“I’m back from the world’s shortest vacation,” Trevor Noah announced at the beginning of last night’s episode of The Daily Show — after a one day break following an emergency appendectomy.
But while this may lead (and certainly did lead, as Noah explains, with hilarious examples) some to want to bemoan the state of workers’ benefits in the U.S., it was actually Noah who decided to come back so quickly, despite Comedy Central having assured him that he could take however long he wanted to relax and ease into appendix-lessness. Rather, the institutional critique in this segment was aimed at the healthcare system itself, and at the ridiculousness of American “emergency rooms,” where people in the midst of crises are met by form-waving gatekeepers, essentially inquiring as to how they’ll pay to stay alive.
“I don’t know if emergency room is the right term, because they make you wait,” says Noah, recalling how he felt like fainting upon entry, but was asked not to do it in the waiting room.
“Sir I’ve got more forms you need to fill out. How are you paying for this?” asked a receptionist.
“With my life, clearly, because you’re not helping me,” Noah joked to the audience.
The segment continues with “secret” video recordings of Noah being visited by the Daily Correspondents; newcomer Desi Lydic attempts to smother him with a pillow; Roy Wood, Jr. tries to encourage him not to die for fear of the Daily Show leadership being granted to another white person.