Last Week Tonight features in-depth and critical look at state lotteries. It also looks at the Turkish Prime Minister's Grand Palace and a Salmon shooting cannon.
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Mike Easley ...
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Mitchell Pritchett
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Storyline

Last Week Tonight features in-depth and critical look at state lotteries. It also looks at the Turkish Prime Minister's Grand Palace and a Salmon shooting cannon.

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Genres:

Comedy | News | Talk-Show

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Release Date:

9 November 2014 (USA)  »

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Trivia

Each episode's title screens includes a faux Latin motto referencing a recent event. This week's "Presidentus Obamus - Lame Duck" refers to the midterm election cycle ending and President Barack Obama entering the last half of his last term in office. See more »

Connections

Features Out of Luck (2015) See more »

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User Reviews

Season 1: A very strong show with good topics, intelligence, plenty of laughs and a political bias that comes with the territory
14 November 2014 | by See all my reviews

When I heard that John Oliver would be moving to HBO, it was bittersweet because on one hand, good for him – good to see the roles in the Smurfs had finally given him the exposure he needed to get ahead; but then on the other hand it meant that he would no longer be the funniest thing on the Daily Show (although ironically he still is), and also it means The Bugle became a lot harder to get together each week. The appearance of the format at first glance didn't offer much to get too excited about – it looked pretty much the same as the Daily Show but without adverts and with more swearing. I had enjoyed Oliver a great deal over the summer of 2013 covering for Stewart, but I wondered how he would cope now that it was 'real'.

It doesn't race out of the box at first, but it does very quickly hit its stride. They have to remember the hard way that Oliver is not particularly strong when it comes to doing interviews, so they are really limited after the early episodes, instead focusing on him delivering in segments. This is where the show is great, and it is great in several ways. The first is that, outside of the smaller segments, the show seems to be a little bit freer of the news cycle than other comparable shows. As a result we get some surprising topics which are covered in the main 12-15 minute body of the show; the death penalty, the prison population, FIFA, net neutrality, the lottery, payday loans, and many other less obvious subjects are selected. Some of these are better done than others, but the standard is consistently high; of course the segments are generally leaning towards a liberal audience, so I can understand not everyone feels the same way about the show, but for me I found them to be very well researched, very well written, and very well presented – making them intelligent, thoughtful and consistently funny.

A lot of credit belongs to the writing; in particular Tim Carvell (whose presence is felt here but also back at The Daily Show – although the latter is not in a good way unfortunately, since the show is not as good since him and Oliver left). The clips get millions of views per week on YouTube, and HBO have made good decisions with not only these clips, but also viral 'bad behavior' which also gets the headlines. Across the whole season there are really only a couple of episodes that are a little unsure of themselves or have wobbly moments, and this is fine because the vast majority are very strong indeed.

An impressive and enjoyable first season and even if the second season puts The Bugle's future in even more doubt, I will still be very happy to see this show return.


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