John Oliver Beating Bill Maher

John Oliver’s April move to HBO might have kept him from being the natural choice to replace Stephen Colbert at his old Comedy Central home, but his weekly show has proved a runaway success. Sunday’s half-hour “Last Week Tonight” has become a fixture at the online watercooler each Monday, and Oliver’s ratings match those of HBO political veteran Bill Maher, 58, beating him by some measures. This is no surprise: Oliver’s show is a half-hour versus Maher’s hour. Oliver’s is silly for the entire duration, Maher interviews high-minded guests for much of its running time.

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