Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Opioid settlements, Eurovision

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
Photo: HBO

Your appetite for the May 12 edition of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver may largely depend on how you feel about certain subject matter.

We will admit that there is a ridiculously silly part of our brain that wanted nothing more than to hear the show’s host do an extended 30-minute monologue almost entirely about Eurovision, largely due to the fact that it is the most ridiculously entertaining singing competition of all time. It’s also become rooted in controversy this year, but he focused on more of the sillier parts, including the guy performing without pants for some reason that remains relatively heard to define.

From there, we then learned a little bit more about deportation plans in the UK, something that was certainly a little bit drier but nonetheless still interesting given Oliver’s obvious knowledge of his home country. We’ve always enjoyed his dabbles into the politics there, in particular whenever elections roll around.

In the end, though, the main segment tonight may, ironically, be the hardest one to get through — a look at opioid settlements that have taken place amidst an ever-going crisis in the country. Oliver even called the subject matter himself boring, joking that this was a big part of the appeal for the show. This is hardly the first time that they’ve taken on this subject matter, but the first time through this particular lens.

Was there still some humor in here? Sure, but rather than just focus on comedy, the team also wanted to get into the necessity of getting the word out on an important subject that does not get anywhere near the attention that it deserves. These settlement agreements are often tricky to decipher, and the families of those involved may not get what they expected. It can be devastating, and that is without even noting the crisis itself.

What did you think about the events of the May 13 episode of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver?

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