Tonight’s Real Time with Bill Maher may be his best yet this season — with a guest line-up including Vicente Fox, Salman Rushdie and Anna Deavere Smith.
Outspoken actress, playwright, and activist Smith is the top-of-show interview guest. Her latest project is her one-woman off-broadway show titled Notes from the Field, coming to HBO on February 24.
The film version sees Smith play 19 of the 250 people she interviewed in the one-woman show on the failed justice system. Her acting is staged before a live audience and is blended with video footage to recreate each person’s “speech patterns, movements and emotions”, according to HBO.
In 2016, Notes from the Field initially opened at the American Repertory Theater in Cambridge, Mass., and then moved off-Broadway to Second Stage Theater in New York.
Vicente Fox, former president of Mexico, is the mid-show interview guest.
Fox is a famous POTUS tormentor and mocks Donald Trump in a series of videos he posts on YouTube. Some of the better zingers from the powerful friend to the Bush family include blatantly calling Trump a “f****** idiot”. He also uses Twitter to call out Trump’s questionable political savvy:
.@realDonaldTrump don’t take that IQ test. Just answer this: You know the name of North Korea’s leader, right? Is it -Un or is it -Il?
— Vicente Fox Quesada (@VicenteFoxQue) October 10, 2017
The roundtable guests are authors Fran Lebowitz and Salman Rushdie. Both panelists are Real Time Hall of Famers, appearing frequently.
Rushdie has penned a book, The Golden House, that serves as a sort of warning about Trump’s new America. The story is based in Greenwich Village and is described as a journey from the Obama campaign hopefulness to Trump’s chilling takeover.
Fran Lebowitz is a wit and intellectual who speaks openly about the current reigning American president.
Of the domestic political situation, she said to The Stranger.com: “Here is what everyone has to know…In a presidential election, you have two choices. You don’t have 150 choices. So there was a choice between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Those were your choices.
“It doesn’t matter whether she was your dream date. It makes no difference. This idea that you have to like people, to me, is very childish. And it’s much more prevalent in people who are young than it is in people who are older, who grew up in an era where no one ever asked us whether we liked things…The idea that everything is a retail experience absolutely has to change — or things will get even worse.
“You may think they can’t get worse, but I can tell you for a fact, with absolute certitude, that no matter how horrible things are, they can always get worse.”
Real Time with Bill Maher airs Friday at 10pm live ET/tape-delayed PT, with a replay at 12.30am, on HBO.