One person who has no intention of watching Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness is Prince William. The Duke of Cambridge had a very good reason for avoiding the seven-episode documentary series about Joseph Maldonado-Passage, better known around the world as "Joe Exotic." Netflix will not be complaining though, since more than 64 million people have reportedly watched the show.
William appeared on the charity special BBC special The Big Night In, participating in a video chat with comedian Stephen Fry's Blackadder character Lord Melchett. The prince asked Fry if he had seen anything on TV, adding, "By the way have you seen anything good on TV? It's hell without EastEnders." Fry then said he heard Tiger King was "rather good." "Yes, I tend to avoid shows about royalty," William said.
William is real royalty, and is second in line to the British throne, behind his father Prince Charles. He was joined by his wife, Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, and their children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis to applaud the U.K.'s health care workers who put their lives on the line during the coronavirus pandemic in Fry's special. "This evening The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis joined the UK in the weekly #ClapForOurCarers to show their appreciation for the incredible key workers working tirelessly to keep the country running," Kensington Palace added in a statement on the prince's Instagram page.
Tiger King centers on the life of Maldonado-Passage, who ran the private G.W. Zoo in Oklahoma, and his rivalry with Carole Baskin, who runs Big Cat Rescue in Florida and tried to shut down Maldonado-Passage's zoo. In 2019, Maldonado-Passage was convicted for hiring a hitman to kill Baskin, as well as violations of the Endangered Species Act and the Lacey Act. He is serving 22 years in prison.
The documentary series became a surprise success for Netflix after its release on March 20, thanks mostly to timing. The show was released just as stay-at-home orders began, meaning millions of Americans were stuck at home, searching for something new to watch. Netflix has said the show was watched by 64 million Netflix households worldwide. On April 12, Netflix released a hastily-produced special called The Tiger King and I, in which comedian Joel McHale interviewed the series' supporting cast to get updates on their lives since the series was released.
"We're acutely aware that we are fortunate to have a service that is even more meaningful to people confined at home, and which we can operate remotely with minimal disruption in the short to medium term," Netflix said in a statement earlier this week. "Like other home entertainment services, we're seeing temporarily higher viewing and increased membership growth. In our case, this is offset by a sharply stronger U.S. dollar, depressing our international revenue, resulting in revenue-as-forecast. We expect viewing to decline and membership growth to decelerate as home confinement ends, which we hope is soon."