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Alicia Keys; Gwyneth Paltrow
Credit: The Daily Show with Trevor Noah; The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon

The comedy and silly laughs may have returned to late-night this week, but each of the shows also touched on the heavy topics of racism in America and police brutality. 

One of the biggest, and fitting, topics of the week was Juneteeth, the day commemorating the end of slavery. As part of the ongoing conversations about racism, there’s been a huge push to make the 19th of June a national holiday, and musician Pharrell Williams is one of it’s biggest advocates. He spoke on Jimmy Kimmel Live about his successful effort to have his home state of Virginia recognize the holiday. Williams also revealed that he’s also spoken with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo; An executive order for his state to also recognize the holiday is on the way. 

On The Daily Show, Alicia Keys also spoke on the significance of Juneteeth. “To me, it’s far more accurate of a time to celebrate than a July Fourth, which still had many people who were not free and were not liberated.” Keys also revealed her virtual, musical battle with John Legend happening tonight! 

The Tonight Show’s Jimmy Fallon had several laughs out loud moments this week including one particularly awkward interview with Gwyneth Paltrow. The Goop founder debuted a brand new candle on the show that was even more buzzworthy than her headline-making original, “Smells Like My Vagina.” Fallon blushed hard when Paltrow held up the “Smells Like My Orgasm” candle – complete with a fireworks box, of course. 

Fallon had a heavier conversation with Don Cheadle, who recently moderated a town hall conversation with presidential hopeful, Joe Biden. While Cheadle praised the former VP on his willingness to answer tough questions during the town hall, the actor had advice for Biden. 

“This isn’t going to be an easy election,” he told Fallon, “he’s going to have to continue to show up, and he’s going to have to continue to really earn the spot. It’s going to be an uphill battle.” 

Even while talking about very important topics, Cheadle and Fallon found a way to laugh, joking about the idea of electronic ballots and the technical issues that could follow. Cheadle likened the prospect to ordering take-out from Postmates. “I don’t know if I voted for Biden or if I just got some more fish!”

Watch What Happens Live also had some laughs at Senator Cory Booker’s expense while talking with Rachel Lindsay about The Bachelor’s newest prospect. Lindsay scolded ABC for waiting 24 seasons before having a Black bachelor.

“I hated the timing of it because it does seem like a reaction to what is happening in our country,” she told Cohen. “Did a man have to die in such a public way on such a national stage for you to say ‘now is the time for us to have a Black bachelor?’”

Both the host and Sen. Booker agreed, but Cohen had his own casting idea for the mega-popular dating series. He mused that Booker should have been ABC’s first choice for the show. The senator got a good laugh but confirmed he hasn’t been approached by the network, and even if he had been, his response would be: “Hell no!”

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