An Insider from “The Apprentice” on How the Show Made Donald Trump
A number of people have been credited with the political rise of Donald Trump—Roger Stone and Steve Bannon among them—but perhaps the most influential is Mark Burnett, the English reality-TV producer. After the massive success of his show “Survivor,” Burnett could have made virtually anything, and he chose “The Apprentice.” His task was to make a New York real-estate developer who was a fixture in the tabloids into a national celebrity, a tycoon, and a decisive leader with unerring judgment. The staff writer interviewed a number of people who worked on shaping Trump’s image on “The Apprentice,” including the supervising producer Jonathon Braun. Braun told Keefe that Trump’s quick, instinctual decisions complicated the work of the show’s editors, who would often have to recut the episodes to find material that seemed to justify those decisions. And Braun argues that the White House and the news media now often play the same role that the “Apprentice” crew did: isolating Trump’s most coherent statement within a long string of improvised iterations.
With Rod Rosenstein Leaving the Justice Department, What’s Next for the Mueller Investigation?
With the departure of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, following the ouster of Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Trump will soon be rid of the two men he holds responsible for the Robert Mueller investigation. joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss what to expect from the confirmation hearing for William Barr, Sessions’s likely successor, and what Barr believes about Presidential powers.
Janet Mock Finds Her Voice
Janet Mock first heard the word “ māhū ,” a Native Hawaiian word for people who exist outside the male-female binary, when she was twelve. She had just moved back to Oahu, where she was born, from Texas, and, by that point, Mock knew that the gender she presented as didn’t feel right. “I don’t like to say the word ‘trapped,’ ” Mock tells The New Yorker’s Hilton Als. “But I was feeling very, very tightly contained in my body.”
Eventually, Mock left Hawaii for New York, where she worked as an editor for People magazine. “[Everyone was] bigger and louder and smarter and bolder than me,” she tells Als. “So, in that sense, I could kind of blend in.” After working at People for five years, she came out publicly as trans; since then, she has emerged as a leading voice on trans issues. She’s written two books, produced a documentary, and hosted for MSNBC. She is a contributing editor for Marie Claire , and, in 2018, she became the first trans woman of color to be hired as a writer on a TV series—Ryan Murphy’s FX series “Pose.” Now she’s working on a film adaptation of her Times best-selling memoir, “Redefining Realness.”
Donald Trump Starts 2019 With Political Turmoil and a Democratic House
Cracks in the Republican Party’s façade of unity are showing. joins Dorothy Wickenden to discuss whether Trump faces any significant dissent from within the congressional G.O.P., and what it would take for the Party to abandon a President who retains the same approval rating he has held since taking office.
The TV, Movies, and Music That Made 2018 Bearable
The New Yorker staff writers all cover the culture beat from different angles. They talk with David Remnick about the emblematic pop-culture phenomena of 2018 that tell us where we were this year: how “Queer Eye” tried to fix masculinity, and how that spoke to women in the #MeToo era; whether “Black Panther” and “Crazy Rich Asians” will mark a turning point in the representation of nonwhite people in film; and how, as Tolentino says, “A Star Is Born” was “arguably the only event of the year that brought America together.”