Trevor Noah is ready to take over The Daily Show from Jon Stewart in September. At the Television Critics Association press tour on Wednesday, the South African comedian laid out his plan for making Comedy Central's crown jewel his own.
1. He'll honor his predecessor.
"The biggest pressure for me is living up to the expectations that Jon has of me. Jon believes in me," Noah said, adding that he was surprised to get the job. "I always loved it, and I guess Jon knew something about me that I didn't know at the time."
2. He won't throw the baby out with the bathwater.
The set will look a little different, but Noah's Daily Show will feel familiar. "Really it's just a different angle that we're looking at things from," he said, pointing out that Stewart is a white, Jewish man in his 50s and Noah is a biracial South African man in his 30s. "It's my angle. But the show still has its voice."
3. He'll have a more global worldview.
Noah plans to broaden The Daily Show's worldview beyond the U.S. "I'm mixed not just in my blood but in my life. I'm a citizen of the world," he said. "Everyone has the same issues - it's just a different filter before them because of how it affects them." "You look at the news and it's changing," said Noah, citing the increase of digital and online news outlets. "So the biggest challenge, and it's going to be an exciting one, is how do we bring all that together though a bigger lens as opposed to just going after one source."
4. He'll be humble.
Noah addressed the offensive tweets he posted in 2011 that were unearthed after he was named the successor to The Daily Show. "In society we change, and that's progress in my book," he said. "What's interesting, is that it went from 'is this guy offensive' to 'what is comedy and what is its role in our society?'"
5. He'll take it as well as he dishes it out.
Noah knows that we'll all be talking about him when he officially launches his show...and he's okay with that. "People must review away," he said. He's looking forward to taking some time to shape the show in his vision. "What I'm really aiming for is consistency. I need to find my stride." He know that he has big shoes to fill. "People will initially go, 'This guy's not Jon Stewart,' and I'm glad I'm not," he said. "That's not my intention. My intention is to start something off the way he did... but luckily I have a foundation that's been set up by a wonderfully smart and funny man."
6. He'll charm the pants off the audience.
Noah is a pretty upbeat guy, which he credits to overcoming his rough childhood in Soweto in a home plagued by domestic abuse. "I'm tainted by hope and optimism," he said.
Trevor Noah will officially take over The Daily Show on Sept. 28. Will you be tuning in?
Check out Noah talking about his new gig with James Corden: