The Daily Show Begs Gorbachev to ‘Put Back That Wall’

The former Russian head of state proves to be as ornery as you'd expect at age 82 Screengrab via The Daily Show

Urging viewers to “forget the media circus in Sochi,” The Daily Show traveled a thousand miles north — to Moscow — in a noble attempt to get to the heart of Russia.

“Turns out this place looks a lot like America, just with a f**ked up alphabet,” exclaimed correspondent Jason Jones as he loitered outside a Russian Shake Shack. Seeking more of the old Cold War spirit, he chatted with politician Vyacheslav Nikonov, who’s served in the staffs of Gorbachev, Yeltsin, and Putin, but that proved to be a bust, too. “Russia is not vicious. Russia is not wild,” Nikonov insisted as the interview derailed into a back-and-forth about whose accent sounds more evil.

Finally, in one of its best journalistic endeavors in recent memory, the show got ahold of Mikhail Gorbachev himself, now 82 and as ornery as you’d expect.

By most indications, the former Soviet Union head of state had no idea who — or what — he was talking to. “If you bring cameras in here again, I will put you against the wall,” he told Jones with a slight smile. “Mr. Gorbachev, can you put back that wall?” the Daily Show personality requested. Gorbachev’s response was unwavering: “The wall came down and it’s a great thing that it happened. And we need to keep going along that path that we chose.”

Then he swiftly kicked out Jason Jones and went back to doing whatever it is that Mikhail Gorbachev spends his days doing in 2014. Here’s the full clip: