Like a surprise album drop from Beyoncé and Jay-Z, comedian and satirist Sacha Baron Cohen has a brand new show titled Who Is America? set for Showtime that will premiere in just a few days. The announcement was made official by Showtime after a series of cryptic teasers made their way to the internet, skewering the state of American politics and especially President Donald Trump. As was later revealed, the trailer was not for a new movie, in the style of Borat or Brüno, but a new series that’s in keeping with the comedian’s past work on television.
The new teaser doesn’t provide a lot of footage from Who Is America?, but then again it doesn’t really have to. Showtime clearly understands the appeal of the new show lies with the man behind it, and so the network has chosen to focus its early marketing campaign for the series on Cohen himself, ostensibly touting the arrival of the creator of Ali G, as well as the aforementioned Borat and Brüno, to the Showtime family.
The teaser goes on to, well, tease the notion that Who Is America? will give audiences a chance to see Cohen as they’ve “never, ever seen him before.” From his Trump-y teaser to a recently released video in which Cohen, disguising his voice again with a heavy accent, asks former Vice President Dick Cheney to sign a waterboard kit, to which the former veep replies, “Sure.”
While it’s impressive to see that Cohen has apparently once again been able to convince participants he’s not the guy who made Borat, the bigger reveal is that he’s been working on Who Is America? in secret for the past year. Though there’s not much else to go on with regard to specifics about the series or the new character Cohen has apparently created in order to pull Who Is America? the premiere date is just around the corner, so those who are curious won’t have to wait long to find out more. According to an official release by Showtime, “the seven-episode series will explore the diverse individuals, from the infamous to the unknown across the political and cultural spectrum, who populate our unique nation.”
This new series is another big step for Showtime, which has made some interesting moves as of late. In addition to the recently announced Halo series, as well as the upcoming Kidding from Jim Carrey and Michel Gondry, the network is set to stir things up on late night by snagging Desus and Mero from Viceland. For its part, Who Is America? stands to be another politically minded series like The Fourth Estate of The Circus, albeit with a deliberately satirical bent. It’ll be interesting to see what Cohen got away with and who’s going to be outraged when the series premieres.
Who Is America? premieres Sunday, July 15 @10pm on Showtime (though it will be available 12am ET/9pm PT, July 14 on streaming and On Demand).