Sacha Baron Cohen’s new Showtime series “Who Is America?” is gaining viewers as it stirs controversy, more than doubling its audience in just one week.
The premiere on July 15 had a little more than 1 million viewers on all platforms. But in its first seven days, that number had swelled to 2.8 million people who watched on-air, on demand, DVR or streaming, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The weekly figure was 179 percent higher than the opening night.
Showtime told the publication the show “drove the most signups for its streaming service of any day in 2018” on July 15.
It’s not surprising that so many people have been curious enough to watch. The second episode, for example, has been in the news for the antics of a Georgia state lawmaker.
Baron Cohen, disguised as Israeli terrorism expert Col. Erran Morad, convinced state Rep. Jason Spencer (R) to participate in an anti-terrorism training video meant to show elected officials how to protect themselves from terrorists.
Spencer spent his appearance on the show shouting racial slurs, flashing his naked buttocks, and making fun of Chinese people. His segment was so incendiary that fellow public officials have been calling for his resignation.