The Hollywood Reporter revealed that “The Nightly Show” that replaced “The Colbert Report” on Comedy Central a year and a half ago has been canceled due to low ratings. Host Larry Wilmore pronounced himself “saddened” by the “unblackening” of Comedy Central. With Wilmore’s departure, the only prominent black figure on late night is Trevor Noah who replaced Jon Stewart on “The Daily Show” that airs just before “The Nightly Show.” Noah has been struggling with low ratings as well, but the network remains committed to his show – at least for now.

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Comedy Central pioneered the model of a liberal scold laughing at the foibles of American political and social life when it hired Jon Stewart to host “The Daily Show” in 1999. Stewart, whose niche audience consisted of coastal slackers and stoners, carved out a place for himself in American pop culture as a voice on the left who could occasionally get a laugh. “The Daily Show” created a spinoff with “The Colbert Report” starring Stephen Colbert who portrayed a twisted, exaggerated version of a conservative.

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They did the work of bashing the right and bolstering President Barack Obama with enthusiasm if not all the time credibility.

But in 2016 Stewart is semi-retired and Colbert is struggling to get ratings at “The Late Show” which he took over from David Letterman, where his shtick had met with less than appreciation. Noah and Wilmore replaced both of them, unlucky for them, just about the time that the Stewart-Colbert model has started to wear out its welcome.

The reason may be that political satire has been overshadowed by real life events. The country is about to replace Barack Obama, a president who by all measures is an abysmal failure, with either Donald Trump, a crazed egomaniac, of Hillary Clinton, a sordid, power mad woman dripping with corruption and dishonesty. The job of bolstering them and bashing their critics may be too much for any comedian.

Noah and Wilmore simply do not have the talent to undertake such a task. That Wilmore is suggesting that Comedy Central and its audience are racist just drives home the point.  

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