John Oliver rode the hashtag activism wave Sunday on HBO’s “Last Week Tonight” in order to troll Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Oliver didn’t think Russia was working hard enough to reestablish contact with a lost satellite carrying a bunch of geckos for an experiment on mating habits in zero gravity. The comedian acknowledged that other problems, namely the conflicts in Ukraine and Gaza, were more important than something like space geckos, but said we’re powerless to do anything about those anyway.
“Maybe, just maybe, if we could come together and accomplish one thing as a civilization, we could then build on that progress,” he said. “I think rescuing these space sex geckos might just be that thing.”
So he issued a “challenge to humanity” to #GoGetThoseGeckos and write Putin from the Kremlin’s contact page. He even got one of the first men to ever walk on the moon, Buzz Aldrin, to hop on board with the hashtag campaign.
Correction: This post has been updated to reflect that Buzz Aldrin was one of the first men to ever walk on the moon.
Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at email@example.com.