Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Death penalty 3.0

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
Photo: HBO

The April 7 episode of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver wasted almost no time at all getting into the main segment: The death penalty. Pretty blunt, right? It is even more so when you consider the fact that this super-serious subject came mere minutes after the Curb Your Enthusiasm series finale.

This is actually the third time that the late-night show has taken on this subject. Originally, they did so in the second-ever show, only to revisit it some time after the fact. Yet, there was a specific reason why Oliver wanted to take on the subject tonight, and it has a great deal to do with a number of developments. Take, for starters, the number of executions that took place during the Trump Presidency. Also, the way in which that the government is working to skirt some rules in order to revisit the policy.

Perhaps the most surprising part of this episode was the existence of some actual journalism within this episode, allegedly finding a source for some of the drugs that were used to carry out some executions. This is something that many companies do not want to disclose for a number of different reasons.

Why was all of this important? Well, it goes back to what we said earlier — there are suggestions and implications here that administrations in the past have tried to find ways to avoid following certain rules when it comes to meeting standards.

This was not the easiest subject to watch for half an hour — that much is clear. However, this remains one of the most important subjects that Oliver has covered over the years. So many shows don’t want to take about the idea of executions and yet, it still happens. This could be a segment that actually leads to some real discussions and even some investigations — who would have expected that from a comedy?

What did you think about Last Week Tonight with John Oliver revisiting the death penalty?

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