Samantha Bee’s new game Full Frontal’$ Totally Unrigged Primary will launch later this Fall, and until then, we got a look at all the upcoming fun!
New York Comic Con 2019 was a sea of high-profile announcements dropped by glitzy Hollywood studios. In a small room on the side of the Javits, nowhere near the bustle of the Madison Square Gardens media storms, comedian Samantha Bee and her Full Frontal with Samantha Bee team descended upon NYCC to debut something that just MIGHT be slightly more important to our future than which smoldering hot dude is starring in the next big budget action flick. At least by a small margin anyway.
Keeping up to date with the ever-changing news cycle can be draining at best and soul macerating at a base medium. But if someone has to do it, thankfully we’ve got Samantha Bee. With a myriad of presidential candidates all vying for one single position, and with the current administration also being newsworthy in its own special way, it’s easy to get overwhelmed fast. “I would not sacrifice the republic for my own needs as a comedy show,” Bee says. “I could probably use 80% less breaking news and still make a good, high quality show.”
Political comedy and satire has always been an oft-lauded tool for making information digestible for the common populous. The current gang of late night hosts, Oliver, Noah, Minhaj, Bee, Colbert, and Meyers if you squint really hard, frequently come across as more trustworthy and researched than the news and people they’re lampooning.
Jon Stewart consistently downplayed the impact his The Daily Show run made to the national discourse, but in this current political climate, there is a case to be made on the importance of social-minded comedy. “Comedy is a great delivery system for actual information,” says Bee on the impact of her show. “Also dumb information.”
Putting that information in the hands of a willing and open audience, while bluntly calling out misinformation for exactly what it is, is the first step to a more educated republic. From Bee’s time on The Daily Show mocking representatives face to face at party conventions, to reacting to the latest tornado of mediocrity on her current show, political comedy has been proven time and time again to be not only cathartic but thought-provoking.
This brings us to the reason Samantha Bee and crew were even at the epicenter of East Coast nerd-dom. Her show, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, continuing its fourth season run on TBS, will plunge into the upcoming Election 2020 in a big way digitally. Enter, Full Frontal’$ Totally Unrigged Primary game, debuting sometime this fall. From the makers of Full Frontal’s first mobile app, This is Not a Game: The Game, comes a new free-to-download game geared toward presidential candidates trivia, quizzes and America’s favorite past time, death matches.
Players will join their favorite candidate’s team, compete in daily funny challenges to earn points, and the candidate with the most points at the end of the game gets all of the donations accrued by the game’s PAC-controlled fund, Sam Bee’s Political Swear Jar. Remember back during the 2012 election, Stephen Colbert taught his audience about Super PACs via his own Colbert’s Americans for a Better Tomorrow, Tomorrow Super PAC?
Through those episodes, viewers learned how money for political candidates is collected, what actually has to be disclosed to the public, and where it lands when everything is said and done. This time, instead of watching the money being gathered, people playing the game and donating to their candidate’s side will directly affect the winning candidate’s campaign fund. To delineate it even further: It’s fantasy football meets HQ.
With the literal at times clusterf&%k of candidates all gaffing their way to democratic victory or inevitable defeat and the warm waiting arms of a five-figure book deal, Full Frontal’$ Totally Unrigged Primary game will pit candidate against candidate in a winner-takes-all battle royale where the victor walks away with a heavy pile of sweet, sweet campaign cash. If your candidate drops out (please, someone drop out, you can’t all have this), your points and contributions are transferable to your next best choice.
Because, let’s face facts, that’s what’s going to happen. Not all of our chosen candidates will make it all the way to the primary. But along the way, the Full Frontal’$ Totally Unrigged Primary game will show users facts about each candidate on where they stand on the issues that matter most. If you’re a masochist and you actually watch the multi night presidential candidate debates, there will be games and completions based on guessing subjects like “how many times reproductive rights are mentioned in one night’s debate.” (So far, that number is shockingly small overall!)
For those somehow not decided on a candidate of choice by now, the game will serve as a great way to discover which of these millionaires will represent you the best in the upcoming election while also making you laugh. And if the winning candidate for some reason declines to accept the fat sack of cash raised directly by individuals and not lobbyists or fancy fundraisers, the proceeds will be donated to Fair Fight 2020, an organization for voter rights protection.
The packed crowd at the NYCC Full Frontal panel was fired up and ready to discuss politics even at a convention with its feet firmly at the altar of escapism from the harsh realities outside its glass doors. Various shouts of applause rang out at mentions of Elizabeth Warren’s name, who Samantha Bee claims “smells like a wholesome harvest,” smatterings of applause for Bernie Sanders, actual grimaces for Joe Biden and loud boos for Mitch McConnell.
Bee noted on that last one, “Imagine being someone where their name rings out and there are boos.” But cheering and booing out our collective frustrations at the world we live in isn’t enough. “Protesting has become liberal church” panel moderator Erin Ryan commiserated on the collective unconscious need to just do SOMETHING. Now that the actual election is right around the corner, the time for doing something with our votes is swiftly upon us. It’s one thing to talk about voting, it’s another thing to actually do it and encourage others to do it, too.
The world has changed in the last few years and it feels as if it’s now or never to act decisively in this upcoming election cycle. The new Full Frontal’$ Totally Unrigged Primary game is already shaping up to be a much-needed funny outlet for political frustration and voter activism. Samantha Bee and her team have their work cut out for them, but Bee is well-prepared if not sincere about starting this cycle once again. “I know I can’t say the C word anymore. But I’ll probably say it again, let’s be honest.”