Without a whole heck of a lot of fanfare, but a few tears, Samantha Bee left "The Daily Show" Thursday for parts known -- TBS, where she'll host another current affairs comedy series.
There were hugs. There were some laughs. And of course, there was a tribute reel.
Bee -- for a time, a genuine contender for the host';s job here -- is a mother of three, author, and married to Jason Jones,with whom she'll develop another series at TBS. She joined "TDS" in 2003, and was "Daily's" only female correspondent (The also very funny Kristen Schaal, now with "The Last Man on Earth," later joined.)
Those are the basic facts -- here's a more subjective appraisal. Bee's deadpan style in the field -- whimsical, with feigned innocence, allowing those not quite in on the joke to make dopes of themselves -- became as much a part of "The Daily Show" style as the host's real or mock outrage. And while it's hard to say (or remember) whether this actually originated with Bee, she certainly perfected it. To see Bee approaching with a mic and cameraperson must've induced in the subject the same dread in those who saw Mike Wallace approach...
OK, that's a massive exaggeration, but the subject certainly had to think -- "uh oh, this can't be good..." At least it could usually be funny.