Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj is hands-down one of my favourite shows on Netflix. For their “Volume 3”, I served as the show’s design director, which included being episode lead for “Elections In The Philippines“, “The NRA’s Global Impact“, “Malaysia, 1MDB, and Goldman Sachs” and “Why Your Internet Sucks“.
As episode lead, I was tasked with conceptualising ideas for the script, figuring how to chapter the episode through the placement of backgrounds, art directing, designing and leading the graphics team to create the 20+ minutes of visuals for each episode. On rehearsal and show days, I was on the ground in the control room, making sure what we were creating, was the best it could possibly be on stage. I had the wonderful opportunity to work closely with every team on the show, from the head writer, the writing and news teams, archival, pre-vis, the show director, to Hasan himself.
It was an incredible opportunity because I was able to contribute to a show that I already loved, learnt about a fast-paced TV pipeline, and was able to work with some of the most talented people in the business. And to top it all off, I was able to use design in a meaningful way, and contribute to telling these very important stories. Patriot Act will be a career highlight for many years to come.
The show was awarded one of the highest honours in the industry, an Emmy for Outstanding Motion Design in 2019.
"Volume 3" design reel with some of my favourite moments.
Intro to "Why Your Internet Sucks". Design by Joyce N. Ho & Apollo Baldoz, animation by Apollo Baldoz.
Designing the backgrounds were equally fun and challenging. There were a lot of considerations about the placement and composition of images, due to the unique stage design. We also had to consider where Hasan would stand during his performance, as well as the camera angle and framing of the shot. Choosing a suitable the colour palette was imperative to setting the tone for each story and it also helped differentiate the chapters of the narrative.
A background change signified a new chapter in the episode's story. Design by Joyce N. Ho, animation by Tynesha Foreman and Brandon Sugiyama.
Scene "Malaysia, 1MDB, and Goldman Sachs" introducing the scandal. Design by Joyce N. Ho, animation by Brandon Sugiyama and Dorca Musseb.
Scenes from "Why Your Internet Sucks"
Map from "Why Your Internet Sucks" depicting how ISP's carve out their territory. Design by Joyce N. Ho, animation by Brandon Sugiyama.
Behind the scene moments from my few months in production. From left to right: testing a background for "NRA" and then "1MDB", show director Richard A. Preuss doing his magic in the control room, and the fancy stage floor septrons
A selection of my favourite background designs from throughout Volume 3.