Don’t worry if you don’t know who Trevor Noah is. The South African comedian has been announced as the third host of The Daily Show, and he’s widely unknown to American audiences.

Thankfully, he’s funny. He also has quite the resume and backstory. 

He was “born a crime.”

Noah was born to a black South African mother and a white Swiss father. His parents met at a time when interracial relationships were illegal in South Africa, and Noah has joked that he was “born a crime.” 

Everyone in New York thinks he’s Spanish

Noah was the first South African comedian to perform on The Late Show With David Letterman. In his routine, the comedian tells a story of arriving in New York for the first time and having strangers try to communicate with him in Spanish, joking “I didn’t know this, but apparently I’m Mexican.”

He got in some hot water for this tweet:


As proof that he’s not shy about going for controversial topics, Noah received some criticism for this tweet, which referenced South African sprinter Oscar Pistorious shortly after the athlete fatally shot his girlfriend in their home. 

He’s got a backup plan


A documentary about Noah, You Laugh But It’s True, was released in 2012 and chronicles his background and comedy style. The London Film Review gave it five stars.

He’s behind on the times

If Noah plans to take the reigns of one of the hippest shows on TV, he’ll have to get hip to what the kids are saying.