John Oliver delivered a powerful speech about the ongoing coronavirus crisis during the latest, and possibly the last for some time, “Last Week Tonight” instalment.
Oliver taped the episode in front of a blank white background.
He shared, according to the Daily Beast: “Well, well, well, um… this is weird, isn’t it? This is definitely weird. As you can clearly tell, this is not going to be our usual show.
“Both the place where we normally tape on Sunday [the CBS Broadcast Center in New York City] and our office building had confirmed cases of coronavirus this week, so our staff has been working from home, and we’re currently taping this somewhere else with a very limited crew.”
Oliver added, “This was the week that the coronavirus, for many people here in the U.S., seemed to go from an abstraction to a very real threat.
“We are clearly in the midst of a rapidly escalating outbreak, and it’s very difficult to say exactly where things stand—especially because, despite Trump repeatedly claiming otherwise, tests for this virus are still not available in most places to those who need them, which means that we can’t properly track the virus, or know how quickly it’s spreading.”
The talk-show host continued, “That is not only catastrophic… it’s also deeply frustrating, especially when you see how quickly other countries, including South Korea, ramped up their testing capabilities. Nothing is fine here. The president’s response has sadly been characterized by disorganization and lies.”
Oliver finished up, “We’re gonna need to look out for one another… and not just in terms of containing the transmission of this virus, but also the economic impact that this is going to have for people who aren’t prepared to weather it.”
Numerous TV shows, movies and events have been postponed or cancelled due to the virus, which has now killed more than 6,500 people worldwide.