WATCH: Peacock Gives First Look at Joe Exotic and Carole Baskin in Upcoming Drama ‘Joe vs. Carole’

by Matthew Memrick
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Peacock’s new trailer at the Joe Exotic-Carole Baskin “Joe vs. Carole” drama looks everything like the ridiculous real-life story.

“Saturday Night Live” regular Kate McKinnon plays Baskin while John Cameron Mitchell (“Shrill”) takes on the Joe Exotic role. Both tiger park owners go head-to-head with each other, like in real life. However, this series will focus on Baskin. McKinnon also serves as an executive producer.

CNN reports the eight-episode series starts on March 3.  

Social Media Reviews Warm Up To Joe Exotic Trailer

Early tweets show a mixed bag of interest in the series. But maybe folks need more time or another trailer to thoroughly appreciate McKinnon and the show.

Online website Nerdist Tweeted that the series “looks as absurd as the real people it’s based on.” Another review website, The AV Club, called McKinnon’s Carole Baskin impression “very SNL” in this first trailer. CNN said the drama was “paw-some.”

While the story came to light first with Netflix, this production is different. This series comes from the second season of the Wondery podcast “Over my Dead Body.” Robert Moor hosted the six-episode “Joe Exotic” podcast series in August and September 2019.

McKinnon, Mitchell Look To Steal The Show

The series starts as McKinnon’s Baskin character learns of her adversary’s plan to breed and “use his big cats for profit.”

Baskin’s plans involve shutting Joe Exotic down, which turns up the heat in their rivalry. The show aims to explore these wild characters before Joe Exotic decides to hire an assassin to kill the Big Cat Rescue owner. 

Showtime’s “Shameless” creator Etan Frankel is behind this series. Kyle MacLachlan, Dean Winters, Brian Van Holt, and William Fichtner also star with Mitchell and McKinnon.

Mitchell told People in November that he hoped the show would help viewers relate to Joe Exotic’s story. The 58-year-old said his portrayal hoped to honor the Tiger King’s 15-year marriage to “his husband dying of AIDS.” The docuseries did not highlight that union. 

Mitchell saw the Tiger King’s story as transformative, saying he saw “the homophobia forming him and making him into this harsh figure who is sympathetic in one way but megalomaniacal in another.”

According to IF magazine, Frankel produced the show in Australia in September and October 2021. Notably, McKinnon couldn’t appear in this past season’s first seven SNL episodes (Season 47) because of the production.

“We knew it would take two extraordinary actors to portray these larger-than-life people as the complex, three-dimensional individuals that they are,” Frankel said in a statement.

Frankel complimented Mitchell’s performance as “breathtaking” while adding the actor “cares so deeply about the work.” As for the “SNL” star, the director called her “simply remarkable.” He called her performance both laugh-inducing and heartbreaking at times.

Outsider.com