Leslie Jones talks MLK Jr. ‘penis’ statue on ‘Daily Show’ debut

Leslie Jones kicked off her guest-hosting gig at “The Daily Show” Tuesday night — and decided to give her thoughts on an accidentally NSFW MLK Jr. statue.

The sculpture in Boston was inspired by a photo of Martin Luther King Jr. hugging his wife Coretta Scott King after winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964. It’s a depiction of the couple’s arms hugging without their heads — which has faced criticism after many pointed out it actually looks like a “penis.”

Jones, 55, tackled the news right away.

After showing a clip of the statue, she asked: “Has anyone in here ever been eaten out?”

“I’m serious. I’m serious. Has anyone in here ever participated in the munchie, munch, munch, munch?” Jones continued. “’Cause they’re celebrating you right now.”

“Listen, I know Dr. King went down in history, but this is not how you should,” the “Saturday Night Live” alum quipped.

Leslie Jones kicked off her guest hosting gig at “The Daily Show” Tuesday night.
The Daily Show

Jones then turned to a different angle and pointed her finger directly at the camera.

“White people, you don’t need to be saying s – – t about this statue. Do you understand? Black kids only. You need to sit your ass in the back of the bus for this one, OK? You need to honor this statue,” she said.

The comedian continued: “This is our civil rights icon. Going down on his wife. You show some damn respect.”

Jones turned back around and addressed the Black people in the audience.

“OK Black people, what the f – – k we gonna do? We gotta talk about this. ‘Cause you know it’s messed up when Black people and the Proud Boys hate the same statue,” she said.

She went on to point out that maybe visitors to Boston Common will end up liking the statue, and gave examples of other famous statues and landmarks that might not have been so beloved at first.

A man reaches to touch a detail of the 20-foot-high bronze sculpture "The Embrace," a memorial to Dr.  Martin Luther King Jr.  and Coretta Scott King, in the Boston Common, Tuesday, Jan.  10, 2023, in Boston.
The sculpture, consisting of four intertwined arms, was inspired by a photo of the Kings embracing when MLK learned he had won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.
AP Photo/Steven Senne

“Did you know that people hated the Eiffel Tower when it first went up?” she said. “What about Christ the Redeemer? I bet you when they first put it up, everybody was like, ‘Jesus is going: What’s up? Why y’all kill me?’ But now everybody loves it. So maybe it’s just a matter of time.”

Jones concluded: “In time we will see this statue for what it truly is: Martin Luther King going down on his wife. I can’t unsee it!”

People on Twitter loved Jones’ observations — and some thought this should lock her in as permanent host of “The Daily Show.”

leslie jones daily show
Leslie Jones gave her thoughts on an accidentally NSFW MLK Jr. statue recently erected in Boston.
The Daily Show

“Leslie Jones saying what everyone is thinking about when seeing the MLK statue in Boston,” one person tweeted.

“Call off the search. @Lesdoggg Jones should be the new host of The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. They should probably change the name, too,” another said.

“Leslie simply killed it. Good bless here. This is arguably the best late night debut in history,” someone else wrote.

“The Daily Show” started their rotating guest-host slots this week following the departure of Trevor Noah, who has hosted the show since 2015.

the 20-foot-high bronze sculpture "The Embrace," shows a hand with a bracelet, Tuesday, Jan.  10, 2023, in the Boston Common, in Boston.

The sculpture is a memorial to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King.


The sculpture is a memorial to Dr.  Martin Luther King Jr.  and Coretta Scott King.

The sculpture is a memorial to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King.


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The sculpture is a memorial to Dr.  Martin Luther King Jr.  and Coretta Scott King.

The sculpture is a memorial to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King.


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Other guest hosts to come include Al Franken, Chelsea Handler, DL Hughley, John Leguizamo, Hasan Minhaj, Kal Penn, Sarah Silverman, Wanda Sykes and Marlon Wayans.

The A-list celebrities will host the show one week at a time. Comedy Central is still looking for someone to fill the spot permanently and start in the fall of this year.

Noah, 38, hosted his last episode of “The Daily Show” on Dec. 8 after a seven-year run. He announced his departure in September, saying it was time to move on and explore other parts of life.

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