The new host of The Daily Show on Comedy Central has been announced as being Trevor Noah, a South African comedian, DJ and actor, who will take over the reins of the long-running American satire show from Jon Stewart, following his decision to step out of the limelight after 16 years in the hot seat. It is expected that he will take over either later this year or early in 2016. Noah is sure to be an interesting choice of presenter, as the 31-year-old is of a mixed-race background and commonly utilises themes relating to that and his formative years in a Soweto township in his comedy.
Noah has a black South African mother and white father, whose background is a combination of Swiss and German, their controversial relationship being deemed illegal at the time when he was born. In fact it led to his mother Selena being jailed and fined in South Africa by the authorities. The undercurrent of those days is apparent in his humour and frames his viewpoint in many respects.
As for his previous links to the show that he is to become the new anchor man on, he started to regularly contribute to the show back in December. In his first appearance on the show he drew attention to a common concern in the United States, relating to tension between the different races that make up its eclectic population. His pointed observations included a comment that clearly harked back to his youth, when he drew comparisons by saying that he hadn't expected to be "more afraid of police in America than in South Africa."
The new man may seem slightly young to front the popular show - the New York City-born Stewart is 52-years-old by comparison - but the producers may be looking for a similar longevity from him in the role as they have had from the current incumbent. Noah started young in the business anyway, as he was just 18 when he featured as a prominent character in a soap opera called "Isidingo" in his home country. He then moved into radio presenting, before returning to the #Television screens for a number of other programmes, including being a contestant on "Strictly Come Dancing" in South Africa. In recent years he has focussed more on his comedy.
His comedy background has seen him become a familiar face on the comedy circuit in his country, but has also allowed him to branch out internationally. Besides appearing as the first stand-up comedian from South Africa on The Daily Show, he has also been seen on David Letterman's Late Show. British viewers may also have caught him on QI for the BBC and also on Channel 4's panel show 8 Out of 10 Cats, giving an indication of his versatility and quick-wittedness.
His comments in the wake of the Oscar Pistorius' trial were not well-received by some in his homeland though, especially when he tweeted the controversial quip "And the Oscar goes to - Jail," as he will no doubt learn that there is a fine line between satire and bad taste for many. Also, he is not the first person to be pilloried for an apparent tongue in cheek comment made via social media.