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Mtv's official challenge podcast is back for another season.


Season 39, battle for a new champion.


Yes. 24 contenders will compete to win their first championship. They know the battle, but not the victory.


So every week after the episode airs, come hang with us as we break down all the challenges and eliminations, and of course, get the inside scoop on all of the drama.


Listen to MTV's official challenge podcast on the iHeartRadio app, Apple podcast, or wherever you get your podcast.


You're listening to Comedy Central.


Hey, Daily Show, Ears Edition listeners. This is Sarah Hamlin, Segment Director for The Daily Show. Today, I'm joined by Daily Show Correspondent and Host for the Week, Michael Costa.


That's right. Thanks, Sarah. Welcome. This is fun.




This is great. We were just talking about your comedy podcast, and then you asked me about my tennis podcast. So we are qualified to do this.


Extremely qualified. So just to give some backstory, we're here because we just air it a piece that brought us both to Duluth, Minnesota, to explore the topic of climate refugees.


And what do you mean by that, Sarah? Because in the migrant crisis that is, we're not really talking about immigration refugees here. Refugees who are leaving cities cities that are devastated by climate change. I'm saying some of this with a question mark.


Yes. We're talking about Angelino's looking for that fifth home somewhere safe from the effects of climate change. Not so much people who have zero homes. Right. And are looking for somewhere safe from any number of issues.


For life, yes.


Right. Yeah. It's pretty much extremely wealthy people. But before we dive into that, let's quickly discuss the return of Jon Stewart.




It's your first experience working and mine as well.


Okay, I was going to ask you that.


What's it been like, and what are your impressions?


Very positive. Man, I have such a weird life. I watched him forever, and now I'm doing a piece with him. So when I first met Jay Leno, I actually said to him, Hey, you look how you look, because I hadn't really met a lot of celebrities yet. I was like, I can't believe he looks just like how he looks. I couldn't really... So John Stewart is just... He seems like how he is. He's positive, he's funny, He's very, very smart. I've enjoyed his two shows on here very much. Very well-researched, very silly. I think people forget how he can also just be really silly. So he'll hit you over the head with a very intelligent, poignant, societally important sentence, and then he'll do a Polish joke, which is what happened this week, which made me laugh. By the way, Poland started World War II.


Why would a country Navy has submarines with screen doors, you want to instigate a war? Quick history lesson. Years ago, for reasons nobody is really sure of, a stereotype emerged that Polish people were inept in various ways, including, obviously, submarine manufacturing, and even something as simple as the changing of a light bulb. I don't know actually how many Polish people you think it takes to change a light bulb, But it's certainly less than the conventional wisdom at that time would tell you. Now, we know that Polish people are as smart as anyone and certainly did not deserve to be invaded by the Germans, who, of course, accomplished that by marching in backwards So the Poles thought they were leaving.


So it's been great. I look forward to getting to work with him and getting to know him better. What about you?


Have you worked with him yet? Yeah, it's been great. I haven't worked directly with him on any pieces, but that first meeting that he had with the directors and writers, where he gave us this general's pep talk. That was great. It was so inspiring. I started at the show about nine months after Trevor started hosting. So for me, it's always been Trevor's show, although I did grow up watching it with Jon Stewart. When I was in college, it's like every night you're watching Jon Stewart host The Daily Show. The thing that I thought was so funny is he's so earnest and positive, even in these private meetings. Then he'll always drop one little thing that is a joke, so it's not so earnest and so sweet. He always wants to put that little edge on it, which is fun to watch.


Well, it's what he and now The Daily Show is. We will, of course, talk about really important topics, but there's going to be laughs. And comedy, the way I like to approach it, or at least in my idealistic mind of comedy, is that it's meant to challenge and it's meant to speak truth to power, which is a very hacky phrase at this point. But that is essentially what it's doing.


And we've been on the air. I mean, I've been here for almost eight years. We've never been able to do a Polish joke until John was here. He finally was brave enough to call out the people who are really running the world.


Yeah, that was funny. He also did preface it by saying, Nobody really knows why this genre of joke became.


Yeah. Back to that cat skills comedy, just knowing the whole breadth of comedy. I wanted to ask, too, how was that chat last week you did with him about Tucker Carlson and the Dictatorships? That was so funny.


An unbelievably embarrassing display of sycophancy from Tucker Carlson.


Yeah, well, I'm not sure what that means, John, so I'm going to assume you loved it as much as I did. It made me think that these Dictatorships have gotten a bad rap, which is why I've traveled here to North Korea. As you can see, it's amazing. It was nice to get to be just me and him. I wanted some dad time. I wanted some time with dad. That was really fun. It wasn't perfect. We did it for the show, and some of the jokes that we all thought were really funny, but were righty, too mean jokes didn't do so well on the actual performance. So they got cut. Peace out. That's the beauty. So the piece ended up being funnier, shorter, and it worked really well. And it's another testament to... One of the words John used a lot in that meeting that I love and I always forget about, I needed to hear was calibration. We're going to calibrate over and over and over again. And that is what The Daily Show does. We try, we don't get it right, we calibrate. We get a couple of things right, we calibrate. And so that was a fun chat for me to do with him because I saw there was calibration all the way through, from the first draft of the script to the rehearsal to the actual performance we had to calibrate a little bit.


Thank you, editors, and it ended up being great.


Yeah, it was so funny. I'm curious to know, so you guest hosted the show a few months ago when we were back from the writer's strike. It was so great. Thank you. Now you're getting to host the Tuesday to Thursday after John. Yeah.


John's my opener.


Yeah. You could do worse.


You could I'm not too harsh.


Do you feel like you're taking a different approach to hosting the show coming up, or has John given you any advice, or do you feel like maybe a different experience since you're going to be following John?


I'm excited to follow John. I think It's challenging because he is effortlessly... I mean, it's not effortlessly, but it feels effortlessly good at it. When I'm out there, it feels like if I'm good at it, it's through effort. But if he gets to ride the big wave, I get to surf right behind him, which is pretty cool, too. I just don't see any negatives about it. I get to watch him, learn from him. I then get my own time at the desk. I'm looking forward to being a little more comfortable there because the first time, I don't think anybody really realizes, it just takes a lot of time and comfort. When I'm watching John on Mondays, I'm always like, Man, he just is so natural there. And I'm like, Well, wait a sec. It's been thousands and thousands of hours there. Can I make a tennis reference? You were expecting it. I was thinking the same thing. You were expecting it. Nobody ever wins their first Grand Slam final. I know what you're thinking, Sarah, but what about Yannick Sinner at this year's Australian Open? Okay, he's the one exception. The reason you don't ever win in your Grand Slam final is it's fucking nerve-wracking.


You're figuring out that the balls look different. There's trophies standing next to the court. It's packed. It's a different vibe. It's a different feeling. To be at the desk is different. It's about everyone staring at you. You're not a supplemental player anymore. I'm looking forward to hopefully feeling a little more comfortable there. I'm sorry I yelled at you about Yannick Sinner, but...


No, I mean, you read my mind, I definitely was immediately thinking of that particular person. So take us behind the curtain. What goes into preparing for your Host Week, and what can viewers expect this week?


Because there is a belief that the news team is going to be hosting more often, as opposed to before, where it was like, this is your guest hosting week. The previous time, it was more like, hey, Michael, what do you want to talk about? Because this is your week. Now the vibe is, we're going to see all of you more. So why don't we do a little less of like, what's Michael want to talk about? What's Desi want to talk? And let's have this headlines lead it. And of course, your own take will prevail on that headline. So it's not like I'm going to sit here and go, I want to talk about this, this, this, and this. Now, we are doing a show on Leep Day. I don't want to blow my cover here, but we're going to talk about Leep Day.


Oh, my That's what I'm at.


So if you're interested in that. But I think in general, and this is actually nice, it's like, Hey, you're going to be here for a little while, so we got to cover the news. It's nice, as opposed to like, Hey, this is your week, so enjoy it, and you're never going to see it again.


This is your one shot, dude.


What do you think I should talk about? What do you think I should talk about?


Wow, great question for me.


Because I'll tell you what's hard. Southern border is hard to talk about. Israel-palestine is hard to talk about. Trump is sometimes easy to talk about, but then it's like, But wait a second, this is actually really important, so we can't just skip it because it's easy. Jokes.


Do something easy like abortion rights.


Oh, my God. Abortion rights is hard to talk about. What do you think I should cover?


Maybe the Michigan primary. Okay.


That's complicated, and I don't know I'm a Michigander.


Yeah. Do you know why? I mean, I'm not going to put any money on Nikki Haley.


But for some reason, it's like not everyone's on it. Yeah. I mean, Nikki Haley is not dropping out.


Well, you're from Michigan, right? I'm from Michigan. So I think maybe I would do a character piece where you talk to yourself in a mustache as your cousin from Michigan. I like that. Commentating on the Michigan primary.


One of the things that is interesting about maybe the primary is, do I feel Nikki Haley isn't that bad, or is it just because I'm used to comparing her party to insanity? You know what I mean? Yeah. You know the crazy family that you grew up with and one of the siblings was normal, and then you like, but actually, they weren't normal. They were just the normalist.


Yeah. Well, I remember when she was at the UN, she was one of the first Republicans that was pushing back against Trump. There we go. I remember seeing that.


She says it's really important to run against him right now. She also keeps saying, How can he be focused on being a good president when he's in court all the time? It's like, Hello. Yeah, good point.


Yeah. Well, I mean, I think Michigan, too. You have such a unique perspective being from the Midwest. That's an area that was so Democrat for so long. Then we just saw this big turn with Donald Trump? I don't know. Do you experience that when you go home? Does it feel very different from the way it was before, or do you feel like the party has just moved?


Great question. I grew up in Ann Arbor.


Okay, yeah. So never mind.


Which was trying to legalize weed since 1958. My first political event was my mom took me to see Bill Clinton give a speech. You know what I mean? Now, it's also really important living in Ann Arbor to drive 20 minutes in any direction and see Republican signs and Trump signs. So Michigan is one of those battleground states unions. This was the first President ever to stand out with the auto union. Of all these years, there was an auto union strike, and Joe Biden was on the picket line. That's interesting. I don't know if he knew he was there. No, but that is wild and really important, and I found pretty interesting.


Mtv's official Challenge podcast is back for another season.


That's right. The challenge is back, and so are we.


I'm Devon Simone. And I'm Devon Roger. Now, you all know we had so much fun covering the Challenge USA one together that we thought, why not do it again? So we are joining forces to dive into this brand new season.


Season 39, battle for a new champion. Yes.


Yes. 24 contenders will compete to win their first championship. They know the battle, but not the victory.


Oh, thank God. I am ready for a new champion, a new one. Okay, give us some fresh faces, people.


Girl, I couldn't agree more. So every week after the episode airs, Come hang with us as we break down all the challenges and eliminations, and of course, get the inside scoop on all the drama.


And we got all the tea, okay? We will be joined by the cast members themselves every week, you all.


Listen to MTV's official Challenge podcast on the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcast.


Let's talk about what's on everyone's minds. Yes. The piece we just shot. Yes. Climate proof, Duluth. Can you give our listeners a quick summary?


I can, but you know it better than I do. But climate change refugees, a little bit of a wink, wink with the word refugee There are people are fleeing big cities to go to climate change proof cities, and Duluth is one of them. Why don't you correct me?


Yeah, Climate Havens, I think. Climate Havens.


There we go. Why? Why are they Climate Havens?


Yeah, the idea is there are cities that can support more population. So a lot of these Midwestern cities, they were built for a lot more people than live there now. So they have the infrastructure. Detroit is one of these places. Detroit was built for a much larger population than it has.


In and up. If you look at the map of America, it's in and up is what some of these cities are.


Yeah. Then you look at California, Arizona, all these states are having water issues. Lake superior, where where a lot of these cities are located has 10% of the world's drinking water. It's places where the worst effects of climate change hopefully will be mitigated. But then, of course, when we went there and talked to people, we found out really climate change is happening there.


Yeah. Well, let's talk about... At one point in the piece, I said, I don't know if you guys are climate havens or if you're just good at dealing with extreme weather, but that didn't make it in.




It was at one point. It was in a You know what? How do things get cut and how do things get put in?


Well- For our listeners. Yeah. If it gets a laugh, it gets cut. Usually. No, usually, yeah. I mean, if it's something that's just unequivocally funny, like you falling into a snowbank, we're never going to cut that.


Our daughter does not watch TV in the morning. Okay, I say that patting myself on the back. But today I was like, I wanted to see the piece. So I said to my daughter, Do you want to watch it? And she said, Yeah. And we watched it, and she laughed at the pratfall.


My My daughter laughed at it this morning, too. Oh, my gosh. She loved the pratfall. So I am funny. She laughed twice.


I am funny. I think you even said to me, You're going to hate me, but I need you to do a fall down here or something.


I really abused you a lot doing that piece. It wasn't that bad. You were in 30-degree water, 3-degree air without a coat, falling into multiple snowbanks.


Holy shit. You know what's happening? I forgot about that abuse. This is when people decide to have another kid. It's like, genetically, they forgot about the troubles of the first kid. I forgot about all that stuff. But I didn't feel... For me, maybe it's because I'm Midwest, cold, I can at least wrap my head around. But those men on the streets that we've done where you're sweating all the time. Oh, yeah. Ricky dressed as Ricky the border wall at the Trump rally. I think hot is way worse than cold.


I wholeheartedly agree. Even this time of year, I'll walk around with my coat open like, Oh, gosh, it's so refreshing.


But also, you know what I've learned in my time here? Because I've now developed enough memories, and I look back on these moments that I didn't like at the time, and I look back on them fondly. I remember when you were like, How do you feel about a cold plunge in Lake Superior on sunrise? Which is what, 5:50 AM? I remember thinking, Oh, my God, I don't want to do that. Then I was like, But now a little more aged Michael said, This is going to be a unique experience. For sure, it's going to be dipping in Lake Superior in February during Sunrise. Man, it was excellent. And you even dipped.


I know. I wasn't going to. Let's talk about that. I wasn't going to. And I thought, You know what? You're having so much fun.


I mean, that's one thing- I dipped once and then Sarah went in.


I will say a little secret. It looks like you're having a terrible time in that cold plunge, but you were loving it.


Was I?


Yeah. And I remember Justin was like, You should dunk your head under. And I lied. And I was like, Oh, no, you don't want to mess up your hair. But you did it. I did it anyway. I was trying to give you a way out. And you just wanted to do it. You were having so much fun. So we had to fake the part of you freaking out.


We had to remove 30 inches of ice so that you can go jump in it. Oh, my God. And your body is going to tell I can tell you you're going to die, but you're retraining some of those neural pathways in your head to say, Hey, I can handle hard stuff. Yeah, I can handle this. Maybe once I get used to it, the cold isn't so bad. I'm frozen to the thick. Well, and one thing, you mentioned his name. Justin's the guy who owns the sauna and the cold Plunge there, Cedar and Stone or whatever it's called. But one thing that's cool about these pieces is you get to meet locals. You often connect with them. You're sitting there shooting something together. And there's so many pieces where you chat with these people for a while. And I don't know if you want to call them friends, but they become colorful characters in your memory of these pieces.




No, I've kept in touch with- But couldn't have said it better, Michael. Thank you.


A few people from the field pieces. It's like you get to meet these really interesting folks. Totally. Do you remember? It's been a while since we shot this. Do you remember some of the bits that we shot that didn't make it into the final edit?


I remember the Roy bit.


That got cut. Yes, that was such a funny bit with Roy. That was a funny bit. Mindy, who was working for the government of Duluth, said, We're trying to attract more people to move here. We could use more diversity. That's what it was. And then your response was, Oh, diversity. Let me call my friend Roy. We FaceTime Roy. Hey, you want to move to Duluth? He hangs up on you. That was a good one. It was a really funny moment. It was a good one.


Didn't make it in. What are some of the other bits? Do you remember?


One thing that was really funny to me was with both interviews, they were talking about all the winter activities. So remember Jamie was talking about the Porta Potty Racing? That's right. Where they put Porta Potty on skis and push them down the street. Yeah, I I remember that.


You know what I'll say to your listeners, because I'm a Michigander and I have to say this, I'm required. I don't think people understand the vastness of the Great Lakes. It's worth googling and even reading the Wikipedia page of Lake Superior. I mean, I have done this. The depth, the volume. I mean, I forget what it's... The residence time of a drop of water in Lake Superior is like That means if a droplet of water flows into Lake Superior, that droplet of water stays there for 119 years. Our little like, Lake in your backyard, that's like two months. Lake Superior is absolutely gorgeous. When you remember to the coffee shop and there's like a trail. Look, if you live in New York or LA, let me tell you something. In Duluth, you go to this coffee shop, you get a coffee, and they have a built-in trail that just takes you to the lake.


Yeah, that was in. What was that area called? What the fuck is this? It was called Two Rivers. Was it called Two Rivers? That was a beautiful coffee shop.


They're like, Oh, people right here. Then they go walk to Lake superior. It's just like, Why am I living in Brooklyn having garbage cans thrown at me every day?


Yeah, it was so beautiful there. The people were so kind, too. They were. Maybe that brings us to you posted on Instagram saying, Each field piece changes you a little, and this one really got me. Can you unpack that?


I do believe each field piece changes you. Do you feel that way?


Yeah. Yeah, definitely.


Or at least, I guess in the same sense that I learn something every piece. Maybe it's my skepticism in life, but I'm always like, Oh, God, I don't want to do that. When you said, How about a cold plunge at sunrise? My first initial thought was probably, Oh, God, I don't want to do that. But now I'm getting a little bit older. Maybe I'm a little bit wiser. I've got children to look after. I was thinking, This might be a really fun thing to do, and it was. So fucking listen to your inner monolog, Michael. And you, can I talk to them for a second?


Talk to them.


You at home. Maybe it is going to be a fun experience for you to do what you don't want to do.


And I do have to say the cold plunge was amazing, partially because of the incredible sauna that was right next to the cold plunge. It helped.


Although the coldest I've ever been in my life, Sarah, was that moment when you get out of the water and then you get to the sauna because you're literally turning into an ice cube.


The reason we did at sunrise was we wanted to get this drone shot of coming out of the pool showing the sun. It was too windy to turn on the drone. Oh, that's funny. I forgot about that. So not only were you freezing, the wind chill was crazy that day.


How did this piece change you? If it did?


Yeah, it really did. Honestly, you were joking about it before. I'm one of those people that I want to really make sure I got it. Yeah. I wasn't going to go in the cold plunge because I was like, We We had to do Man on the Street after that. I was like, I don't want to waste any time. I just want to get this done. It was a good win-in-realm moment of like, When am I going to get to jump in Lake Superior? I think the crew will be fine if they get to sit around and have some downtime for 15 minutes while I jump in the water.


I'm glad you did it. It was fun that we did it together. It reminded me of a piece I did in Switzerland with Stacey Angelies, and we shot this Swiss Guns.


We shot- One of the best Daily Show field pieces.


Great piece. Thank you. So funny. But we shot this river in burn Switzerland, where people literally commute to work. They put their suits in a dry bag, and they jump in the river and they take the river to work. It's crazy. We shot this open five times. It never made it in the cut. But at the end, Stacey's like, I'm jumping in, too. We all jumped in and floated in the river together. I'm like, These are fun moments.


Yeah, it was great. It was so fun.


I'm trying to When I think about, I flew directly in and we went straight to City Hall, and it was under construction.


Yeah, that's right. We flew in and shot that day. And I had to change in the bathroom while nail guns were being fired above my head.


And that's one thing that no one ever knows about these pieces is you are putting that suit on in a very dicey place, usually.




As opposed to this coming week where I'm hosting, I'm putting a suit on with five people making sure everything is perfect. Then the hair, then the shoes, even though no one ever sees your shoes, your shoes are still amazing when you guest host.


But how many times have you had to not even... You haven't even had the bathroom with the nail guns. It's been like, Can you put on your suit in the van? And we can hold up a towel over the window.


I think that's partially why correspondence here have gone on and done some really amazing things because you get battle-tested. Not that putting on your suit in the van is like battle-testing, but you just get comfortable figuring it out on the run. I would say the same for the directors.


I am curious to know, though, coming up this week, do you feel like watching John host the show these past two weeks, you've picked up things about what he's doing that are affecting the way you want to host, maybe the things you want to say, how you want to say them? Yeah.


I mean, it might have been Paul Reiser, the comedian, who told me once that you actually get inspired by watching Mediocrity and saying, I know I can do that. When I watch John, I don't get inspired. I get nervous. I say, It's so easy for this guy. That's the opposite. But I love how he lets the moment come to him. He plays a clip, and then we go back to him, and he doesn't have to speak right away. He allows himself and the audience to digest it. That's one thing I've noticed immediately, because I think I'm always like, Okay, get to the thing, get to the thing. It's like, follow in it, live in it. I have to use a sports reference. I'm a guy, I come from a jock background, so the only best way I can describe it is I am really looking forward to getting more at bats Because I think over the course of many at-bats, I'll show improvement, as opposed to just one at-bat like, Okay, you better be good. That's my big thought.


Great. You did a great hosting week, It was so fun.


It's so fun to be in charge, not from an authoritarian way, but from a, I want to talk about this topic, and I want to talk about this topic, and I don't want to talk about this topic. They go, Okay, fun. Let's talk about the topic you want to talk about. That is so nice.


Yeah. You came right in day one, let's talk about Israel-Palestine.


That was on my mind, whether there was something happening or not. Yeah.


That was months before anything was going on there.


It was strange that I was so obsessed with it.


You just knew.


Well, thanks for listening, everybody. Thank you, Sarah, for having me on Daily Show's podcast.


Yes. Thanks for joining me, and thanks so much for listening to The Daily Show Eres Edition.


Explore more shows from the Daily Show podcast universe by searching The Daily Show, wherever you get your podcasts. Watch The Daily Show weeknights at 10 Central on Comedy Central, and stream full episodes anytime on Paramount+. This has been a Comedy Central podcast.


Mtv's official Challenge podcast is back for another season.


Season 39, battle for a new champion.


Yes. 24 contenders will compete to win their first championship. They know the battle, but not the victory.


So every week after the episode airs, come hang down all the challenges and eliminations, and of course, get the inside scoop on all of the drama.


Listen to MTV's official challenge podcast on the iHeartRadio app, Apple podcast, or wherever you get your podcast.