If anyone deserves to take the rest of 2017 off, it’s the hard working men and women of The Daily Show With Trevor Noah. Throwing themselves a one-hour televised farewell party at New York’s Gramercy Theater entitled The Yearly Show, Noah and most of his cast of correspondents all took their final shots at this—by any objective standard—shitshow of a year under the capriciously ignorant rule of Donald Trump. Noah broke out his tux and his standup shoes to emcee. Ronnie Chieng broke down the year in tech. (Including Lyft’s new pre-routed shuttle service, or, as Chang said, the bus.) Hasan Minhaj took a tour through the most representatively ridiculous moments in cable news. (Like Rachel Maddow’s overhyped build-up to two unrevealing pages of Trump’s 2005 tax return.) Roy Wood Jr. and Michael Kosta vainly attempted to make their breezy sports overview apolitical. And Lewis Black wished us all a better 2018. Or rather, in his signature irascible style, at least a painless death.
But it was correspondents-turned-singers Dulcé Sloan and Desi Lydic who, addressing the year in both female empowerment and the shitty behavior from men necessitating such empowerment, broke out the piece of the night. With some help from Wood, (aka DJ Meat & 3, who immediately apologized for his own part in men “being creepy a long-ass time”), the pair dropped their year-end feminist anthem “Song For Women 2017.” And while both contributors pitched in (even the pitchy Lydic, whose warbling was aided immeasurably by DJ Meat’s auto-tune), they did have to contend with the messy realities of well-intentioned allyship. For one thing, the white Lydic, playing her ironic privileged shtick to the hilt, kept earning Sloan’s side-eyes for her blithe assertion that all the necessary banding-together women have done in 2017 constitutes “such an incredible year for women.” (“It’s terrible,” sighed Sloan. “This year has been terrible for women.”)
They were, however, able to agree on both the kickass women of 2017 (Beyoncé, Elizabeth Warren, #MeToo activists Tarana Burke and Rose McGowan, Wonder Woman and its director Patty Jenkins), and on how even women with different perspectives on intersectional feminism have no need for dudebros making it all about themselves. With Daily Show colleague Michael Kosta entering to spit a verse as “DJ Mansplain”—complete with equivocation about women’s responsibility for their own harassment and defiant excuse that he has a daughter—Sloan and Lydic put their differences aside to straight-up refuse the smug handoff back to their song until Mansplain got the hell out of the studio. (They did, however make room for some backing vocals from another prominent woman of the year.) After a 2017 that started off with the massive Women’s March (“Started this year hand in hand/To show that pussy-grabber with the terrible tan”), Sloan and Lydic weren’t about to let a dude sum up the year in women’s activism.