April Fools’ jokes are always exhausting or unoriginal or impressively tone deaf, except when, every once in a while, they’re not. And this year, it was ESPN of all places that managed to pull off a genuinely good April Fools’ Day prank, mostly because the butt of the joke was ESPN’s resident idiot Will Cain.
The premise of the joke was that Cain, the inexplicably smug Tucker Carlson wannabe who has said climate change fears are “intellectually dishonest” and was ready to defend Trump’s Muslim ban on ESPN, was going to fill in for Bomani Jones on Jones’s show with Pablo Torre, High Noon. Cain and Torre get through most of the intro banter—Will is just so excited to be hosting a TV show—and then Bomani pops up.
“I got you,” Jones says, laughing and pointing at Cain, who doesn’t get it right away, saying, “What do you mean ‘you got me’?” Then it dawns on him. “Ah, the joke’s on me, huh.” Still, it takes a while for it to sink in. “So I’m really not doing the show?” he asks to laughter from off-camera. As he leaves, visibly unhappy, Cain says, “Next time you have me on you jerks won’t have me on as a joke.” To which Jones replies: “The next time they have you on will be the day I quit.”
Now that is a satisfying April Fools’ Day joke.