This past Sunday the first episode of the Watchmen series premiered and, while it takes place in an alternate history based on the graphic novel of the same name, it does feature a horrific event that happened in real life: the Tulsa race riot of 1921.
While a piece of fiction incorporating real events wouldn’t be anything to talk about, the Tulsa race riot is different due to the fact that many people watching the series had no idea that this part of the show was based on history.
Reading comments about the premiere on just about every platform will reveal a bevy of people quite shocked to learn this fact. What’s more surprising is that people from America claim to have never seen the event taught in schools or brought up in other settings.
Seeing so many tweets that #Watchmen was the first time they heard about Black Wall Street and had no idea that our opening depicted the Tulsa Massacre which had not been taught in US history classes made me want to post this post from The Post: https://t.co/jiLH9M4Wt6
— Regina King (@ReginaKing) October 21, 2019
International viewers may also be unaware of the event which happened almost a hundred years ago in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and because of this many have taken to Google to find out more.
Thanks to Google Trends we can see the large influx of search results for it, both from the USA and the world as a whole.
Looking at the Google Trends for the last seven days (the graphs of which are available below) we can see a massive spike around 21st October, the day after the premiere.
When reading up on the numbers its worth noting the rather strange way Google chooses to illustrate its numbers. Without revealing the exact number of searches, it instead uses a scale from 0 to 100. 0 means that not enough data exists for a reading, and 100 represents the peak popularity for the term. 50, of course, then sits in the middle.
While our graphs below look at the last seven for the USA and worldwide, the spike is seen regardless of time frame as this week following the premiere has arguably turned the most eyes to the Tulsa race riot, at least when looking at internet searches.
At the time of writing we’re seeing searches for the term begin to drop, but we’re sure something will take its place when the second episode of Watchmen airs this Sunday.[h/t – /u/moby323]