Donald and Ivanka Trump watching Gorilla TV

Peter Corbett/Flickr The White House/Flickr (CC-BY) Remix by Jason Reed

This ‘Fire and Fury’ excerpt about Trump’s love of gorillas sadly isn’t real

No, Trump doesn't obsessively watch a channel with gorillas fighting each other.


Ana Valens

Internet Culture

Posted on Jan 5, 2018   Updated on May 22, 2021, 5:53 am CDT

Milkshake Duck’s founder Ben Ward is at it again. Better known by his Twitter handle Pixelated Boat, Ward went viral this week after parodying Michael Wolff’s book Fire and Fury on President Donald Trump. But his surreal excerpt about Trump’s fascination with “the gorilla channel” is fooling Twitter users, with many believing Trump is infatuated with a TV channel focused on apes fighting each other.

The satirical excerpt, which was posted Thursday night, depicts Trump as a president infatuated with “the gorilla channel.” In Ward’s joke, Trump thinks his presidential TV is broken because it doesn’t have a channel based entirely on gorillas. So in order to keep the president satisfied, the White House compiles gorilla documentaries into “a makeshift gorilla channel,” broadcast “from a hastily-constructed transmission tower on the South Lawn.”

In Ward’s parody, the Trump administration eventually edits down the documentaries to just gorillas fighting each other, leaving Trump watching the channel “17 hours straight” and speaking to the gorillas as if “the gorillas can hear him.”

Ward’s post quickly went viral after Twitter users actually believed Trump was infatuated with gorillas.

And while many people figured out the excerpt was a joke, it certainly took some a very long time to put the pieces together.

Oh, and Trump supporters didn’t immediately get the joke. They thought Wolff actually claimed Trump is infatuated with the gorilla channel.

Even Ward himself admitted that he’s feeding part of the “fake news” problem with the joke. He later changed his display name to “the gorilla channel thing is a joke” in an attempt to make sure no one actually believes Trump obsessively watches a channel with gorillas fighting each other.

While Ward’s parody excerpt may be a joke, the post points to a larger problem surrounding Trump. The president’s actions are so unbelievable at times that any coverage suggesting Trump is a buffoon ends up going viral. While it’s important to criticize the president when he acts in ways that are bigoted and ignorant, that shouldn’t be done without a healthy dose of objective skepticism.

But as Ward suggests, that’s probably hoping for the best. In reality, many people will still believe the gorilla channel is real.

“Wonder if this new display name will help,” Ward tweeted last night. “Probably not.”

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*First Published: Jan 5, 2018, 10:11 am CST