As the show’s “Senior Mars Correspondent,” Wood did not share in the rest of the nation’s excitement over NASA’s discovery of water on Mars. He was especially not feeling the possibility of black people one day traveling to the planet.
“Black people ain’t going to Mars! That includes you Trevor. …You think because you on TV they’re going to take you to Mars. You’ve only had The Daily Show for one commercial break. These white folks ain’t decided if they like you yet,” Wood said.
Before his big debut on Monday night, Roy spoke with ESSENCE about his exciting new job. Below are excerpts from the interview.
How does it feel joining The Daily Show team?
You know what? It’s fun. The only way I can put it after 17 years of comedy is that I feel like a dog that caught the car. This is what it feels like when you hit a goal. I’ve got to learn. I’ve got to do this job well. I’ve only been here two weeks so it’s been a very swift learning curve. Now I understand why the audition process is so thorough. It’s because when you get here you basically merge into traffic that’s already flowing. There aren’t a lot of stops. I feel like I joined an operation that was already moving and it’s my job just to merge in.
How’s it been working with Trevor Noah and the team?
Trevor’s been great. They put me with a bunch of great field producers and they talked to me about what’s expected of correspondents and how good a correspondent is supposed to be. Some of the vets here taught me some tricks. Jessica Williams has been really great. Al Madrigal as well. Jordan Klepper and I, we talked about some stuff. We watched some old stories to get a feel for the job. Thankfully, I feel like everything I’ve done up until this point has prepared me for this.
Are you gonna be the Black correspondent?
[Laughs] I don’t want to just be the dude that does all the Black stuff. I would be remiss if I didn’t take a look at some of the issues that affect people of color and use the Daily Show’s signature style of humor to shine light on topics—not just the Black ones. But if there are Black issues there, please believe I’m going to try and cover some of that too.
Read the rest of Roy’s interview with Essence here.
Catch Roy Wood, Jr. in his new gig as a Daily Show correspondent weeknights at 11pm ET on Comedy Central.