UPDATE 2020/01/18: Hulu has responded to the reports that are circulating concerning Anthony Bourdain’s “Iran” episode that is not listed on Hulu’s Video On-Demand service.
Twenty minutes ago, Hulu posted the following on Twitter: “Hulu does not license Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown directly – we only receive the on-demand episodes that are provided by the network. This particular episode has never been made available to Hulu, but we would welcome it on our service if provided.”
ITNT: Of all episodes, it just happened to be the one about Iran that’s missing. Sheer coincidence………
ITNT – The escalating tensions between the governments of the US and Iran are already having a huge effect on the information that is, or isn’t, presented to the public.
One of the latest updates about the information war, that is being waged between the US and Iranian corporate and political powers, concerns reports about Hulu, the online streaming service, seemingly having removed celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain’s episode “Iran” wherein Bourdain travels through Iran to highlight Iranian culinary traditions.
When exactly the episode, “S4 E6 – Iran”, was removed by Hulu is not known. Hulu also has not provided any reasoning for the removal of Bourdain’s episode.
Hulu, owned by Comcast and Walt Disney, apparently is being used as a 21st-century “book burning” tool or Orwell’s foreseen “memory hole” to control what kind of information about Iran audiences can consume, or are allowed to even know about.
WardenclyffeTower: “Depending on the country you live in, you can still watch it. For example, in the US it’s still available on every platform that carries it: iTunes, Amazon, Vudu, Google Play, Microsoft, etc. It’s not available on Hulu in the US”
NoOneOfUse: “It was a super insightful and unique look into modern-day Iran with little (in my opinion) bias. I never knew Iran was so beautiful until watching this episode. But sure, remove peoples chances to have a change in perspective.”
delorisdeloris: “That’s exactly why it was removed. You don’t want to humanize the enemy during war and create empathy.”
Potential_Job: “that’s some 1984 shit”
newnemo: “This is outrageous and you are spot on in saying this is ‘1984’ shit. Propaganda is about vilifying your ‘enemy’ and making them appear less than human, an often used technique to justify wars and crimes against humanity. That episode was wonderful and a rare and intimate view into the lives of ordinary Iranian people I found exceptionally interesting. This is part of Bourdain’s legacy and Hulu just shit on it. I want to know who made that executive decision and why because it is shameful and more than a little disturbing as it qualifies as political censorship. I’ll just toss this one on the top of my list of why I’ll never subscribe to Hulu.”
0resistance_OBEY: “Having very wealthy companies controlling our media is not a good thing. Doesn’t matter if it’s Old Media like NBC or New Media like Hulu (and YouTube!). A wealthy company is going to serve the class interests of the wealthy, at the expense of the common working person. And the wealthy want us to hate Iran.”
boondocks5: “Anthony Bourdain wasn’t just a white dude who got paid to go around eating weird ethnic food. The fact that he went into each culture with an open mind and hoped to bring that level of understanding to the screens of the millions of people who watched his shows, arguably made him a humanist of the highest order. So to me, this kind of censorship is actually pretty disturbing. Like, social media banning posts urging on the Iranian Revolutionary Guard to kick America’s ass is perfectly understandable. But to remove an episode of a show that was all about putting a human face on these parts of the world that Americans were rather oblivious to, it just brings up an uncomfortable fact about how when tensions rise the last thing leaders want is for their people to see the those whom they may have to kill in battle one day as human beings worthy of sympathy.”
quaitheoftheeast: “What the hell Hulu? I don’t like the censorship of any content especially if it’s something so small like this”
NavinRNorton: “Well that blows. I was just recommending that Ep to some people to learn about the people of Iran.”
AnotherSoulessGinger: “When I try to watch the show, it comes up as only available with Hulu Live TV. That would mean that it’s the network censoring the episode and not Hulu. Hulu Live only makes available what the networks allow for streaming after air.”