The Daily Show thinks it’s cracked press secretary Sean Spicer’s particular style of moderating press conferences, and it’s not exactly Melissa McCarthy bellowing about “radical moose-lambs.”
In fact, host Trevor Noah marveled, Spicer’s tone has recently shifted away from that initial belligerence, and gone in a fascinating, disturbing direction. “I mean, he’s still incompetent,” Noah clarified, “but now he does exactly what Trump wants — which is to show complete disdain for the media.”
To illustrate the point, Noah played clips of Spicer trying to corral the briefing room by insisting that everyone speak in turn and raise their hands “like big boys and girls.” As Noah put it, this can make Spicer look “less like a press secretary and more like an overworked kindergarten teacher.”
And to illustrate that point, The Daily Show played the same Spicer clips intercut with footage of a much different audience: a classroom full of children barraging Spicer with questions and demanding answers about the Trump administration’s ties to Russia. In this context, watching Spicer snap at journalists that “it’s not your press briefing” and — it bears repeating — instructing everyone to “raise our hands like big boys and girls” makes it even more obvious how condescending and patronizing he can be.
Maybe that’s why the most effective moment of “Sean Spicer: Kindergarten Press Secretary” was based on a recent clip of Spicer scolding veteran journalist April Ryan for shaking her head in response to an incomplete answer. Watching Spicer seethe that she’s “shaking [her] head again,” and that she should just “take no for an answer,” as if he’s rudely talking down to a kid who can’t possibly understand the matter at hand, underscores how he and the Trump administration view their relationship to the press.