Trevor Noah, host of The Daily Show, recently released a new stand-up special on Netflix entitled “The Son of Patricia.” The comedy show aired almost a year after his first special, “Afraid of the Dark.”
“The Son of Patricia,” which was released on Nov. 20, first aired in Los Angeles in front of a live audience. The special is an hour long, and Noah keeps the audience engaged by sharing his experiences with racism, his family, and his immigrant experience. After each one of his stories, he also shares the lessons he learned with the audience.
In this special, he starts by telling the story of his trip to Bali; he was one of very few black men on the trip. He explains how some residents of Bali seemed to look at him differently when they noticed the color of his skin. Throughout all of his encounters in Bali, he says, “we’re all human beings; we all experience the same thing and go through the same trauma.”
Noah is originally from South Africa, and he also explains the cultural differences between his home and America in the special. Upon moving to America, he says he did not realize that he would have to learn a new language, since he already knew English. He jokingly states that, in America, we speak what should be called “American” rather than English. Through the different pronunciations, homophones, and more, he often found it hard to keep up.
He also shares his opinions on our country’s history, such as colonization and our current presidency. He discusses the current debate on the building of the wall between the border of the United States and Mexico. He jokes about how Americans are often opposed to letting immigrants into their country, yet some are constantly celebrating and embracing their culture. He says, “If you want Mexicans to leave, don’t eat their tacos.”
Noah has many stories in which he encountered racism, but he says that he is “fascinated” by it. His mother taught him to “take others’ racism, shake it up with the love of Jesus, and then send it back.”
From a young age, he and his family experienced racism; his mother is a Black Xhosa woman and his father is from Switzerland. It was against the law for his parents to be together, which gave them issues when they tried to live together. However, he says racism did not bother his mom and therefore when he encountered it, it didn’t bother him because that’s what he was taught.
Noah says he didn’t fully understand what his mother was teaching until he was an adult. One day when jaywalking through the streets of Chicago, someone called him the “N-word” out the window of their truck. However, the word means nothing to Noah since, in his mother’s language, it means “to give;” he’s been using it for his whole life. He says when racist people say it to him, not only does it not bother him, but it reminds him of fun memories from his childhood.
Noah’s Netflix special, “The Son of Patricia,” is about what he learned upon moving to America and that what his mother taught him is that kept him going. The movie is a stand-up comedy that teaches many lessons along the way. Trevor Noah provides helpful insight about how to handle racism, cultural, and political differences. He effectively uses his celebrity status to convey a message that focuses on our similarities and rather our differences.