After almost two years of silence, Galifianakis’s Between Two Ferns returned Thursday with an interview with Hillary Clinton, in which she showed mastery of the side-eye and threw shade at Donald Trump.
This is just a well-crafted piece of PR. Clinton’s mock-seriousness is a knowing caricature of how many perceive her. We’ve seen this before—in Broad City and Saturday Night Live—but what makes this different is the reach of Between Two Ferns, which averages 6 million views per video. It’s for that very reason that in February of 2014, President Barack Obama went on the show for an episode that now totals 35 million views. Compare that to Obama’s 2012 interview on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, which garnered under 2 million views.
If you’re going for reach, Between Two Ferns isn’t a bad choice. The dangers of this? The same thing you’ll hear at every marketing conference ever about appearing inauthentic when adopting pop-culture as an outreach strategy. But for now, it seems to work.