The 2016 election was the most divisive and exhausting campaign cycle most of us had seen in our lifetimes. Like many Americans, Sarah Silverman thought Hillary Clinton would defeat Donald Trump on election night making history as the United States elected its first female president — but she, like many of us, was wrong.
“The night of the election I understood survivalists because I actually thought, I need a gun to protect myself from the government when the government comes,” Silverman said in an interview with Buzzfeed News. “It was like, Oh! That’s how all these people have been feeling with the Obama administration, which, to me is progress, but to other people that progress meant fear and terror. Whether that fear is founded or unfounded, I suddenly understood it.”
In was in these moments where Silverman received the inspiration for her new show, I Love You, America which will stream on Hulu, that describes the show as a “weekly, topical series.” While the series will be a news talk show, the comedian wants to avoid the show being compared to others like The Daily Show with Trevor Noah or John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight, which Silverman says is only reaching an audience who already agrees with the show’s politics. “I’d like to connect with un-like-minded people,” she said. “It will be funny, it will be silly, and there will be people who are not like-minded, but what I’m hoping to expose is that we are much more the same than we think we are — we’re just listening to two different sets of lies as our news.”
Silverman does seem like an ironic candidate to have designed such a series, given that her comedy and social media presence is very polarized and divisive. But Silverman added that the country is too divided not to do something, and “the show isn’t the me on Twitter.”
“Nothing brings people together more than laughing,” she told EW in an interview. “And listen, I have very strong political views and I’m not abandoning them. I’m still me, but I’m trying to be as open as possible because unless our porcupine needles are down, change can’t happen.”
I Love You, America premieres today on Hulu, Thursday, Oct. 12.