Q&A: The Daily Show’s Samantha Bee

We talk with the comedian about which correspondent she’d most likely eat and talking to dead people. Plus, we're giving away tickets to her Oct 25 show!

By Aaron Scott October 22, 2013

If you’re like us, you get a lot of your news—okay, maybe most your news—from Jon Stewart and his cast of correspondents. Most senior of those is Canadian comedian and actress Samantha Bee (she nabbed the torch from Stephen Colbert in 2012), who’s skewered everything from Occupy Wall Street to the resistance to women in the military—to say nothing of her alleged war on Christmas. And now she’s coming to Lewis and Clark for what’s billed as“An Evening with Samantha Bee: My Life as a Daily Show Correspondent and Other Misadventures.” Pretty self-explanatory, right?

Bee got her start in the all-female sketch troupe the Atomic Fireballs in Toronto before starting at The Daily Show in 2003.  She has authored the book I Know I Am but What Are You?, appeared in movies and television shows like Whatever Works and Good God, and plays a regular character in the cartoon series Bounty Hunter, along with her husband and fellow Daily Show correspondent, Jason Jones.

We couldn’t pass up the chance to ask her about the show, which correspondent she’d most likely eat, and her favorite interview. (Really, she just plays coy). We’re also giving away a pair of tickets at the end of the interview.

So your event is being billed as “An Evening with Samantha Bee: My Life as a Daily Show Correspondent and Other Misadventures.” Will this be a pulling back of the curtain, so to speak?
My plan is to pull back the curtain and reveal just the right amount of information. A sexy amount of information, like a woman's naked ankle poking out from her multi-layered dirndl.

Are there any elements of the Daily Show you can’t talk about? Say, fine print in the contract about Stewart secrets you can't expose?
Before I answer that question, I'll have to get you to sign this non-disclosure agreement prepared by my attorney. Thanks in advance for your cooperation.

You're now the Daily Show’s “most senior correspondent,” having been on the show since 2003. After a decade of being on TV, is your job easier or harder?
The best part of my job is that it is always different—every day brings a completely new challenge, and by "challenge," I mean, '"somebody is going to do something ridiculous and we are going to make hay with that."

How has it changed as you've become more recognizable? Are there still people who don’t realize who you and the show are? And how do you convince those who know the show to give an interview when they know they're going to be mocked on national TV?
It's surprisingly easy to find people who want to be on TV, and I should know because I also want to be on TV.

Has anyone been hostile or walked out?
Yes. I can't tell you who it was. I actually seriously can't tell you—just let it be known that he/she is a small person with a comically over-sized ego. Like a tree frog with a head the size of a hot air balloon. 

What's your all-time favorite interview?
I am going to show a clip from my all-time favorite interview, as you mention it. No one will remember this piece, but it meant a lot to me, and I will probably cry when talking about it.

An Evening with Samantha Bee
Lewis and Clark College
Oct. 25 at 7
If you could interview anyone, alive or dead, who would it be?

Can it please be an actual dead person? It could be anyone really, as long as they're dead—I'm not picky.

If you had to be stranded in a TV studio for a month with just one Daily Show correspondent/host besides your husband, Jason Jones, who would it be and why?
Why would you ever assume that my first choice would be my actual husband? Have you ever seen Jon Hodgman perform? He's very entertaining.

Really? When you emerged, how would you both be different?
I would have killed and eaten him, in all probability. Jon Hodgman is also very delicious.

Have you been to Portland before, perhaps for a segment? Do you have any Portland stories to share?
I have been to Portland before—I love it—it's right up my alley. That said, my main plan is to eat my way though the city and board my departing flight fifteen pounds heavier than when I arrived.

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