Hot off the momentum built last year, Patriot Act returns in 2019 with Volume 2 of Hasan Minhaj’s politically charged show. With a return of the comedy and hard-hitting facts that made the first Season so engaging, this first episode picks up where it left off for 30 minutes of engaging, topical comedy.
While writing up my review to Volume 1 yesterday, I deliberated for quite a while over how much space to dedicate around the Saudi Arabia incident. For anyone unaware, Hasan had an entire episode dedicated to uncovering a big scandal in Saudi Arabia. This consequently saw Netflix coming under fire and being forced to pull the episode in some Middle Eastern regions. As mainstream news caught wind of this, Patriot Act spiked in popularity thanks to the infamous Streisand Effect (which is also discussed here).
Thankfully, Hasan discusses this in a fair amount of detail here, adding a humorous spin on proceedings by showing what’s actually on the Saudi Arabian Netflix. This leads on nicely to the actual topic this week which gravitates around Censorship laws in China. It’s long been established that this dominant global force has had strict, draconian laws around what its residents can and cannot access online and thanks to Hasan’s wit and comedic prowess, it’s explored in more detail here.
From abortions and sexual harassment through to full blocks of history censored through Chinese media, Hasan dives right into the heart of the conflict and exposes some of the more pressing matters in China today. It’s not all doom and gloom though and the uplifting end to the episode sees Hasan discussing the MeToo movement that’s rapidly spreading across China and what this means for the country’s laws.
For the most part the episode is broken up nicely and the clever switch from Saudi Arabia across to the Chinese segment progresses naturally with a good pacing throughout. Hasan is as charming as ever as well and his charismatic enthusiasm for these topics helps drive the narrative forward throughout.
If you were a fan of the first season and are looking for more of the same, you can’t really go wrong here. Censorship In China is another very good episode in the history of the show and it seems the press coverage Patriot Act received earlier in the year has done nothing to wane the quality put into making this topical show. It’ll be interesting to see what’s explored next week but based on this episode alone, that prospect is a very exciting one indeed.
Expect A Full Season Write Up When This Season Concludes!