Brow Beat

The Daily Show Presents a Sitcom Inspired by America’s Student Debt Crisis

Selling your organs to feed your family? Cue the laugh track! The Daily Show tackled the student debt crisis on Thursday, with Trevor Noah noting that young adults are delaying milestones like marriage and buying a house to move back in with their parents after college. But it’s not just young people who are suffering—older Americans are also in debt with their own student loans or their children’s or both. “Student debt is the new herpes,” Noah said. “Almost everybody has it, it stays with you your whole life, and eventually you’re gonna have to tell your fiancé about it.”


With student loan debt reshaping the American family, Noah suggests that sitcoms should follow suit. Meet the Debts stars Roy Wood Jr. and Desi Lydic as a couple whose adult son (Jaboukie Young-White) moves back home because he can’t afford to pay off his student loans. It has all the trappings of a familiar sitcom—right down to the granny square blanket draped over the couch—but with some truly modern plot lines, like father and son bickering over who gets to hide behind the couch to avoid that pesky debt collector. Hilarious.

Slate is seeking your stories about student loan debt for our Student Loan Project. Email us at with the year you graduated, how much you owed at the time, how much you currently owe, and a brief description of how the debt has influenced your life up to now.