Russian TV teases launch of Tucker Carlson show on state-run broadcaster

Russian TV news channel Rossiya 24 has released a trailer for an upcoming show featuring former Fox News journalist Tucker Carlson. The state-run broadcaster has not provided clear details on whether the show will consist of original content or be a translation of his regular English-language videos on X. Carlson, known for his populist conservative takes, abruptly left Fox News in April, and since then, his presence in the media has been highly anticipated. Although Rossiya 24 has not announced the airing date of the show, the trailer has been shared multiple times this month, and it was recently aired again on September 22, with the caption, “on the weekend,” suggesting a weekend time slot. Despite the lack of specifics, the trailer has sparked curiosity and interest among viewers, presenting the American presenter’s transition to a new level in Russia.

During his tenure at Fox News, Carlson was recognized as the highest-rated cable TV host. He held significant influence as the anchor of a late-night political talk show from 2016 to 2023, setting the conservative agenda and shaping the Republican party’s discourse. His programs consistently addressed controversial topics related to immigration, crime, race, gender, and sexuality, frequently touching upon the “woke” ideology. Notably, his coverage of the 2020 presidential election brought him into legal disputes, as Dominion, a voting machine company, filed a lawsuit against Fox News for its reporting. The broadcaster ultimately settled the case with Dominion for a substantial amount of $787.5 million, shortly before Carlson’s departure.

Russian state TV channels have frequently referenced Carlson’s shows in the past due to his inclination to reiterate Kremlin’s questionable claims about Ukraine. The promotion of his new show on Rossiya 24 hints at a continuation of these perspectives. However, it raises important questions for the audience to consider, such as the underlying motivations and intentions behind this collaboration. Carlson himself has posed the question, “What is this really about?” He challenges viewers to reflect on his critical stance towards Russian President Vladimir Putin and highlights that Putin has never accused him of racism or threatened his employment for expressing dissenting opinions. Additionally, Carlson draws attention to job outsourcing and the impact it has had on the middle class in his hometown, implying that he has personal reasons behind his critical stance towards Russian politics.

Following his departure from Fox News, Carlson ventured into the online sphere by launching a new show on Twitter called “Tucker on Twitter.” However, after the social media platform’s rebranding, the show was renamed “Tucker on X.” If Rossiya 24 decides to translate and broadcast these shows, it would not be the first Russian company to do so. For the past five years, a YouTube channel called KarlsonTV has been publishing and translating some of Carlson’s shows in Russian, accumulating a substantial subscriber base of over 1 million.

The announcement of Tucker Carlson’s show on Rossiya 24 has generated significant attention, particularly due to the partnership between the controversial American presenter and the state-run broadcaster. While some anticipate a continuation of Carlson’s conservative narratives and dubious claims about Ukraine, others question the motivations behind this collaboration and what it signifies for both sides. It remains to be seen how the show will unfold and whether it will deliver original content or translated versions of Carlson’s online broadcasts. Nonetheless, this development has piqued the curiosity of audiences, eagerly awaiting the premiere of the show on Rossiya 24.