Hey there everybody! I'm Hasan Minhaj. Hope you are all doing well during these uncertain times. My show 'Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj' is back on Netflix with a brand new episode streaming right now! You can also catch the main story from each episode on YouTube! In our most recent episode I covered America's growing issues with housing and how the coronavirus pandemic is making problems even worse for renters. Also! Follow Patriot act on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
UPDATE: Thanks for all of the questions! I have to sign off now to keep working on next week's episode of Patriot Act. In the meantime, check out yesterday's episode about how coronavirus is effecting renters streaming on Netflix and YouTube now! https://youtu.be/MPFPBzr7FgY
And if you or someone you know is struggling to figure out how to pay rent during this global pandemic, visit https://www.dontgetkickedout.com/
When you were preparing for the WHCA Dinner, how far in advance did you know that Trump wasn't going to be in the audience? Did it change your act much -- and if so, are there any jokes that you're particularly annoyed you didn't get to use?
(Also, I just saw that you're apparently doing it again this year with Kenan Thompson, so congratulations on that!)
There’s a lot up in the air right now but I’m really excited to do it again this year. I don’t want to give anything away, but it’s gonna be really fun.
I wanted to ask you about the impact of your show. Obviously your show has had impact as evidenced by your testifying to congress, and I wonder what are your thoughts and feelings about the influence of your show and what you hope to achieve in terms of informing others and policy change. And whats your advice on someone who wants to have a similar role in informing others about issues that are often obscure and hidden?
P.S I adore your show! Congrats on your new baby and Happy Ramadan!
You never know what type of impact your material or jokes can have. But I’ve never tried to guess or ‘call it’ and say ‘This episode is going to change this one piece of legislation. Watch!’ That would be insane. We just try to do the best possible work we can and see what happens.
Of all the topics you've covered which one has shocked or angered you the most??
Student loans. Realizing how loan servicers like Navient make it impossible for people to pay back their loans was crazy. There’s one strategy Navient has where they convince people to go for something called loan forbearance, where you put off paying the loan but have to deal with huge interest rates later, instead of something called an income-based repayment plan, which lets you have smaller monthly payments if you make less money. Basically, they actively convince people to make really bad financial decisions. It’s horrible.
Hey Hasan, been a big fan of yours since your days at the Daily Show. Who was your favorite colleague to work with there and what kind of an influence did they have on how you present your stories on Patriot Act?
Jordan Klepper was so nice to me when I first joined the show. He took me under his wings and showed me how to do field pieces. I owe a lot to him for two things in particular: he showed me how to be thorough when getting questions and comedic games ready for a shoot, and then to just have fun. If you watch him in the field he’s so good at improv and it’s really because he’s being patient, listening, and having fun out there.
Hi Hasan, excited for the new episodes of Patriot Act! I saw your interview with Justin Trudeau recently and it was exciting to see how you came ready to push the hard questions while still being a comedian. How did you prep for a (possibly) tough interview like that with a world leader?
We did a lot of research and watched a lot of his old interviews. So we were pretty confident what his stance was on these topics, and how he would answer basic questions. But instead of trying to pitch him curveballs or changeups like a normal interviewer, we threw a couple of fastballs at his head. Metaphorically obviously.
Hey Hasan, big fan here! Given how COVID-19 and the 2020 US election have been dominating both American and global news outlets for the past few months, what are some major ongoing events that you feel the media have the responsibility to be covering but aren't due to the likelihood they won't receive as many viewers or clicks as the two major stories of the year? It feels like these topics are drowning out stories and people that also deserve some attention.
Our most recent episode on rent & evictions was something that I felt hadn’t gotten enough coverage before the pandemic, and then it was actually exacerbated by it. But we actually set up a website, dontgetkickedout.com, to help get out information that might not be that available but that could help people if they’re having trouble with rent.
Even before covid, we tried to cover topics we think are novel and don’t get a lot of airtime because, at face value, they aren’t flashy or scandalous enough. The depressing reality is most things, if you dig deep enough, have some sordid and clandestine details going on under the surface. One episode I’m really proud of is the episode we did about cruises. Might have seemed like an odd subject for an episode at the time but in light of corona it’s become a big hotbed of discussion.
Is Jon Stewart as funny as I want him to be?
Yes. Especially when it comes to talking about lunch. I remember one time on the way to rehearsal he stopped to talk to one of our camera guys about the size, temperature, and texture of the perfect pastrami sandwich. I really think TDS should have been more food oriented. He has so many strong opinions about food. This was one of my all time favorite J. Stew moments on the show.
Hey Hasan! Since you are a big NBA fan, what did you think of The Last Dance?
Loved it. Really exciting to relive that era of the NBA - especially since there’s no basketball now. There were a lot of details about the Bulls’ run that I didn’t know about. I think once Coronavirus is over we all need to give Scott Burrell a big hug. The last 3 minutes of Episode 7 were incredible. And MJ bawling on the floor after winning on Father’s Day. All iconic moments.
Sallam, Hasan! Do your parents watch the show and if they do, do they give you a hard time about the casual profanity or concern about hitmen taking you out?
Considering I decided to get into comedy, this is the best case scenario and my parents are very proud and happy! They don’t like the cursing during Ramadan. I’m trying my best to tone it down. Also Netflix pays for two ex-Blackwater guys to keep guard over me at all times.
How do you choose/what goes into choosing a topic and about how long do you research each one before writing the episode?
What kind of things do you look at in determining if it's a good subject to explore for an episode?
Our staff pitches episodes and we approve them based on how many references to Jeffrey Epstein you could make in them.
Roti or Naan?
Paratha. Come on now. Sometimes naan comes in and it's too thick and your naan to salan ratio is all off. Also, if you let it stay outside too long it calcifies like dinosaur bones. Paratha splits the difference between Roti and Naan. It’s the middle way. It represents balance.
If comedy/entertainment industry hadn’t worked out for you, what would have been your second career choice?
Roller coaster designer. I would have been really good at that. Have never ridden a roller coaster but I’m passionate about the intersection of physics and design.
Hey Hasan! Love your show. If you had to choose one meal to eat every day for the rest of your life, what would you pick?
I’d probably just keep going with what I’m eating every day now: a can of beans, a spoonful of peanut butter, and Gatorade Frost. The perfect meal.
Hey Hasan, what life advice(s) would you give to the class of 2020 graduating in this difficult time?
Stay true to yourself, don’t let anybody talk you out of your dreams, and do not, under any circumstances, enter the illegal wildlife trade.
What do you think of Marvin Bagley? How good do you think he’ll be?
Too early to tell with injuries, I just think he’s gotta slow down with the mixtapes. Sometimes I find myself wishing he was a Slovenian 6’7” former Euroleague MVP. Couldn’t tell you why.
Have you ever been pressured by politicians, lobbyists, companies, etc. to not discuss a particular subject?
The Dairy Farmers of America pressured me not to do an episode about how oat milk is better than regular milk.
When will we see more episodes? Will you be doing them without a live audience?
Right now our live audience is just our show runner Prashanth, who’s quarantining with me. He does heckle me, to keep me on my toes.
what podcasts are you listening to these days? anything good? do you even have time for podcasts???
I actually really love the Dissect Podcast series. Season 1 on MBDTF got me hooked. The host Cole Cuchna is from Sacramento too which is dope.
What’s your favorite kind of soup??
Whatever kind is given to me as a Costco sample. I remember during the fall of 2005 they had an amazing tomato bisque and grilled cheese set up that my Dad and I went to town on.
When’s the last time you coughed up a tonsil stone and smelled it?
Real talk if you floss and use mouth wash you won’t have to deal with these things. I could dedicate an entire episode of Patriot Act to tonsil stones. WHERE THE HELL DO THEY COME FROM?
Do you like or hate being compared to John Oliver?
No. British people are disgusting. Sorry my Indian is coming out. John is incredible. Being compared to him is an honor. TDS family for life.
As a son of immigrants, how would you fix legal immigration? Also, is there a topic that Netflix just said “no”?
Open the borders. It’s all fake. Government isn’t real. The president is a hologram. Viva la resistance.
If you had to fight off a 100 tiny masturbating monkeys or one giant masturbating monkey, which would you choose and why?
100 tiny masturbating monkeys. No question. Just need a leaf blower.
hi hasan! if you could be greenscreened into any movie, what would it be?
Hanging out with Will Smith in ‘I Am Legend’. It’s such a great TNT movie.
How’s quarantine Ramadan been treating you?
It’s 2:43pm right now and I’m already losing steam. I hope my answers are coherent. How about you?
How did you come up with the name "Patriot Act?"
Me and Donald Rumsfeld agreed it had a nice ring to it.
Have you watched Never Have I Ever?
Watched it with Beena. We loved it. Maitreyi Ramakrishnan is a star.
Hi Hasan, as someone from outside of america(SEA to be exact) i like to watch your show for you and your comedy, well because im not american of course and non of those issues matter. Will you be planning on moving towards a different kind of show thats more focused on the comedy itself rather than politcal issues?
Thank you for watching! I think (said like a wal-mart commercial about covid-19) “now more then ever,” in the midst of a pandemic and leading up to an election, it’s important to be discussing politics. We try to have a more global view than other shows though and we try to approach every topic in a way that makes it digestible.