Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj (Netflix)
2018 | Netflix
If one were to design the optimal television program to engage millennial audiences in contemporary politics and public life, Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj is the perfect model. Minhaj, ever charming and earnest (and slightly wardrobe challenged), leads a deep-dive into an array of evergreen big-theme social and political issues—oil production, immigration, Big Tech, corporate brands—in a half-hour weekly program for Netflix. With Minhaj’s trademark high-octane energy level on full display, he bounds around a stage encircled by rich technology displays, alternating in style between a valedictorian’s nerdy and information-dense book report and a class clown’s propensity for witty asides and obscure pop culture references. His young and diverse New York studio audience seemingly drinks it up. Minhaj is also bold and fearless. In an episode that Netflix eventually removed from its Saudi Arabian platform due to censorship pressure from that regime, Minhaj takes on the ruthless crown prince MBS just weeks after that regime murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Minhaj brings a welcome voice to the overly white male middle-aged hosts of political entertainment television—as a Muslim, a person of color, and a millennial. Indeed, it is precisely these identity markers from which he speaks that gives him power and authority to address issues such as Islam, affirmative action, and our technology-saturated lives. For offering an important new take on politics and popular culture and giving voice to politically engaged young people in a diverse American polity, Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj wins a Peabody Award.
Creators: Hasan Minhaj & Prashanth Venkataramanujam. Executive Producers: Hasan Minhaj, Jim Margolis, Prashanth Venkataramanujam, Michelle Caputo, Jennie Church-Cooper, Shannon Hartman. Supervising Producers: Emily Anderson, Carol Klein, Nancy Agostini. Director: Richard A. Preuss. Talent: Hasan Minhaj.