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Crime News

John Oliver Goes Head To Head With NRATV On 'Last Week Tonight'

The HBO "Last Week Tonight" host describes NRATV as "the dumbest, most transparent thing [the NRA] does."

By Eric Shorey

Did you know the NRA streams TV content 24 hours a day?

HBO host John Oliver used an extended investigative segment to explore NRATV and the propaganda industry employed by far-right lobbying groups on Sunday's "Last Week Tonight". The segment has already prompted responses from the NRA.

Oliver begins by examining the public pressure put on companies affiliated with the NRA, which led to the end of a series of corporate partnerships with the organization. Calls for boycotts specifically on NRATV prompted Oliver to ask the important question: "What the f*ck is that?"

Videos from the channel have gone viral by "trolling for your attention," according to Oliver, prompting liberal outrage over the implicitly violent rhetoric used on the station.

Described by Oliver as "Fox News on a much lower budget," NRATV has original programs ranging from a handful of Antiques Roadshow knockoffs to shows on crime prevention and hunting. The channel also has some projects aimed specifically towards female audiences, openly justifying the shows by saying: "If you get the women, you get the family."

"The final defining characteristic of the network is painting a bleak vision of America, with threats around every single corner and one solution," says Oliver, describing the thesis of NRATV by showing paranoid clips from the shows which warn against terrorists, drug cartels, insurrectionists, and other apocalyptic dangers. Meanwhile, amongst the dystopian warnings, commercials for a wide range of products (including, confusingly, beat juice) are also sold by the channel's various personalities.

"The answer to the question 'What the f*ck is NRATV?' is: it's just a vessel to sell America guns. That's pretty much it. Does it work? It's honestly hard to say. They won't reveal their ratings. it's plausible no one is watching this ... But having watched a sh*tload of NRATV's programming here is what I'll say about it: there is a lot to be concerned about regarding the NRA's activities. But NRATV might actually be the dumbest, most transparent thing it does," Oliver concludes.

The NRA has responded to the segment by selling a T-shirt worn in one of the clips featured on "Last Week Tonight."

[Photo: Screenshot via YouTube]