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As The Daily Show with Trevor Noah gears up for its first live audience taping at 11th Avenue’s NEP studios today, the 26-year veteran comedy and news program saluted Hell’s Kitchen with a cheeky new billboard.

Trevor Noah is back on 11th Avenue with a billboard message for his Hell’s Kitchen neighbors. Photo: Phil O’Brien

Titled “You Don’t Want to Know What You Stepped In While You Were Looking Up Here,” the sign is perhaps an ode to host (and Hell’s Kitchen resident) Trevor Noah’s own experience walking around the nabe — as many locals have noted, “sidewalk landmines” are at an all-time high, compelling Community Board 4 and District 3 City Council Member Erik Bottcher to declare a campaign against dog poop.

Prior to a brief sabbatical in Times Square, Trevor’s larger-than-life billboard was aimed at the drivers on 11th Avenue, saying: “Traffic’s only bad until you get to the tunnel.” Before that, Jon Stewart aimed his Daily Show billboard at curb crawlers in search of Larry Flint’s Hustler Club around the corner.

“You Don’t Want to Know What You Stepped In While You Were Looking Up Here” says Trevor Noah. Photo: Phil O’Brien

It does indeed seem that the marketing department at The Daily Show is well-versed in HK’s hot-button issues — in addition to recent gatherings between local politicians and advocacy groups to demand safer, more pedestrian-friendly streets, a recent survey of W42ST readers on 9th Avenue’s outdoor shed bonanza revealed that many locals hope for a permanent reduction in car traffic. 

While it remains to be seen when and how Hell’s Kitchen will be additionally featured in new episodes (perhaps a feature on the upcoming to-go drink bonanza at 9th Avenue’s bars? A crossover episode between Tha God’s Honest Truth and The Problem With Jon Stewart?), Noah and the team at The Daily Show are anticipating the exciting return of live audiences at NEP Studios. The third host in a long legacy of 11th Avenue comedy, Noah reflected on the unique experience of stewarding the show through the pandemic and back into live tapings.

In a guest appearance on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, Noah said: “I have to get used to people laughing again. There are parts of doing it with nobody there that has a smallness to it — we feel like a band of robbers in the Wild West. Imagine then if you now had guests in your house — when I have guests over, I have to think about, ‘how would I like this experience to go for them, so that they want to stay’.”

If you’re looking for a short commute to the sharpest political late show in town, reserve free tickets here. And be sure to keep one eye out for the next billboard (and one eye, of course, on the sidewalk!). 

Jon Stewart aimed his billboard at the car drivers on 11th Avenue in search of Larry Flint’s Hustler Club. Photo: Phil O’Brien
Trevor Noah’s previous advert was also aimed at motorists: “Traffic’s only bad until you get to the tunnel.” Photo: Phil O’Brien

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