Leslie Jones pokes fun at MLK statue in first monologue as The Daily Show host

The former SNL star is one of a slate of other celebrity guest hosts following the departure of Trevor Noah.
Leslie Jones pokes fun at MLK statue in first monologue as The Daily Show host

By Mike Bedigan, PA Los Angeles Correspondent

Comedian Leslie Jones poked fun at a newly-erected statue celebrating Dr Martin Luther King Jr during her first stint as guest host of The Daily Show.

The former Saturday Night Live star is one of a slate of other celebrity hosts, following the departure of Trevor Noah last month.

Other comedians due to take on the temporary role include Wanda Sykes, DL Hughley, Chelsea Handler and Sarah Silverman.

As part of her first show, Jones performed a monologue in which she analysed the newly-unveiled statue celebrating Dr King in Boston.

Titled The Embrace, the 20-foot bronze statue consists of four intertwined arms and is inspired by a photo taken of the civil rights activist when he learned he had won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.

The art work caused controversy online after it was interpreted by some as being somewhat erotic in nature.

Speaking as part of the monologue, Jones said: “White people, you don’t need to be saying shit about this statue. Do you understand? Black hands only.

MLK Racial Justice
Jones poked fun at a new statue in Boston, titled The Embrace, that celebrates Dr Martin Luther King (Steven Senne/AP)

“You need to sit your ass in the back of the bus for this one. You need to honour this statue. This is our civil rights icon going down on his wife.”

She continued, “OK, black people… We got to talk about this, because you know it’s messed up when black people and the Proud Boys hate the same statue.”

Three-time Emmy award nominee Jones performed on SNL from 2014 to 2019, and gained recognition for her impressions of Whoopi Goldberg, Serena Williams, Michelle Obama and even Donald Trump.

She will host The Daily Show for the rest of the week, with her fellow guest presenters also taking week-long stints thereafter.

The 91st Academy Awards – Vanity Fair Party – Los Angeles
Trevor Noah left The Daily Show last month (PA)

It comes after Trevor Noah’s departure from the show, having been host for seven years.

In his final episode, broadcast in December last year, the South African comedian became emotional and thanked his viewers and the black women who had “shaped and nourished me” throughout his life and career.

He previously took over as host of The Daily Show from fellow US comedian Jon Stewart in September 2015, continuing the strong focus on political and news-based satire.

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