Ooo! Comedian Jessica Williams Is Working on a New TV Pilot

Jessica Williams donned body army and bikini in a segment reporting on an incident in McKinney, Texas where a police officer pulled a gun on Black teens having a pool party. 

“People complain a lot about sexism these days but thankfully there are people who know the truth. If anything, it isn’t the women who are victims, it’s the men.”

This is one of Jessica Williams’ more biting pieces for The Daily Show, where she brought crucial humor and insight to the show’s satirical reporting on race and gender. She made history as the youngest correspondent on the show—she was only 22 when she first appeared—but now she’s leaving for an exciting new project.

Williams announced on Twitter this week that Thursday, June 30, will be her last show. Fans need not worry, though—she’s only leaving to focus on a show of her own. Comedy Central announced they signed a development deal with her back in March. Her new show will be a half-hour series, co-written with producer Naomi Ekperigin of Broad City.

“I’ve had this idea for a while about a young woman who is a feminist and who imagines herself to be ‘woke,’” says Williams in an interview with Entertainment Weekly. “I think that a lot of the time, we have this idea… that you should always have your shit together… But oftentimes I’m, like, I’m still in my 20s, and still kind of a mess. So it’s a show about somebody in their 20s who has all these social ideas, but still does not have it together.”

Over her four years on The Daily Show, Williams covered hefty topics such as sexual assault, street harassment, and police brutality with wit and style. Her banter with Jon Stewart was just as enjoyable to watch as her segments and seeing her make Stewart break character and laugh was always pure gold.

Williams was so popular on the The Daily Show that many people called for her to step into Stewart’s shoes when he announced his retirement. She extinguished that idea with a response on Twitter, citing her age and lack of qualifications as reasons she didn’t want the job.

Trevor Noah, who took Stewart’s seat in fall of 2015, wished Williams well.

“The sadness I have for Jessica leaving is only eclipsed by the joy I have for her starting her new show,” he said to Entertainment Weekly.  

Williams said she’ll be covering a lot of the same issues as she did on The Daily Show.

“The main thing about the show is that I’m excited to, in a silly and funny way, be able to explore ideas of feminism and race and LGBT issues,” she told EW.

You can watch The Daily Show’s sweet goodbye segment to her right here.

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by Emily McCarty
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Emily McCarty is a freelance journalist and received her Master of Journalism from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, B.C. She writes about disability, class, race, and women's and girls' issues. She was an editorial intern at Bitch in the summer of 2016.

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