There has been some grumbling about both "The Late Show With Steven Colbert" and "The Daily Show with Trevor Noah" not getting Emmy nominations as best variety series, a glaring omission considering that their predecessors were once staples in the category.
Much less has been made about the passing over of "The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore" -- and that's a shame.
Most of the time I only watch the program's opening comments and while I find Wilmore's monologues among the most biting and sharply written -- he helped create "The Bernie Mac Show" and "The PJs" -- I almost always switch over to Jimmy Kimmel, Stephen Colbert or Jimmy Fallon at the stroke of 10:35 p.m.
Not lately. Hanging around for the entire program has paid off with Wilmore utilizing his correspondents better than his Comedy Central associate Noah is, and moderating an engaging panel that doesn't tiptoe around the issues. It's shorter, more polite, than the one refereed by Bill Maher on HBO. It's also often better.
Wilmore's age -- 54 -- was considered a detriment when he got the assignment to replace Colbert in January 2015, but it's turned out to be his secret weapon. A few miles on the treadmill and a solid backup career as a showrunner (he could be in charge of "Black-ish" right now if he wanted to) means Wilmore isn't treating the job like a make-or-break situation. He seems less interested in how the public will react, which may explain why he continues to press the Bill Cosby issue long after much of the mainstream has moved on and why he pulled out the N-Word at the White House Correspondents Dinner.
It's also why he had a great show Tuesday night, which started off with a hilarious "over-celebration" of Michelle Obama's speech and imagining how an ambitious Cory Booker might have secretly fumed.
"She didn't just steal his thunder," he said. "She pulled up in a van and straight up jacked his thunder."
Check it out for yourself.