The plot of a new Fox animated comedy series is about a guy who gets a $3,000 monthly 'universal basic income'

Character Mark Hoagies from the upcoming animated "Universal Basic Guys" on Fox.
"Universal Basic Guys," airing this fall on Fox, satirizes universal basic income programs. Fox
  • Fox is set to release "Universal Basic Guys," a new animated series, this fall.

  • The show satirizes universal basic income and stars two brothers who receive $3,000 a month.

  • While basic income programs have become popular in the US, they're not without detractors.

If you do anything successfully for long enough, someone is bound to make a quippy cartoon about it. Basic income programs are the next victim, coming soon to Fox.

"Universal Basic Guys" stars a pair of brothers who receive $3,000 a month as part of a basic income program after the hot-dog factory where they work becomes automated. The OpenAI founder Sam Altman and others in the tech industry have voiced support for universal basic income as a potential solution to the likely job losses created by artificial intelligence.

The animated series is coproduced by Fox Entertainment and Sony Pictures Television. Fox and Sony ordered the first season in 2022. The show is scheduled to premiere in the fall, and Fox has already ordered a second season.

The show follows brothers Mark and Hank Hoagies. Destitute and looking for purpose, the brothers discover their town has a "radical universal basic income" pilot program.

The show is a satirical take on the basic income pilots that cities across the United States have experimented with in recent years. Most of these are guaranteed basic income programs, which target low-income residents by offering them monthly cash payments with no strings attached. Most programs, like one in Iowa that gives low-income residents $500 a month, report that recipients spend most of the funds on essentials like rent and food.

The idea of a universal basic income gained traction when the entrepreneur Andrew Yang made it part of his campaign during the 2020 presidential election, and it continues to be a favorite talking point for tech CEOs. A universal basic income would provide monthly, no-strings-attached cash payments to everyone, regardless of their financial status.

While more cities are experimenting with basic income programs, they have also been the target of conservative ire. Some lawmakers have criticized the programs as akin to socialism, while others have called them unconstitutional. A common refrain is that basic incomes encourage recipients not to work, though studies have shown the opposite.

In the show, the monthly payments allow the Hoagies brothers to relive their youth with some local friends. Because it's a universal program, all members of the town receive $3,000 a month.

"Mark, Hank, and the rest of their local buddies are once again kids in the summertime, overflowing with the perilous combo of free time and stupid ideas," the show's description says. "This is a show about men trying to find purpose in a world where they're no longer needed."

"Universal Basic Guys" is set to join Fox's "Animation Domination" lineup. Promotional marketing for the show features the main character, Mark Hoagies, alongside Homer Simpson of "The Simpsons" and Bob Belcher of "Bob's Burgers," two other downtrodden animated men popular on Fox.

Michael Thorn, Fox's network president, said in a 2022 press release that the show's cocreators and executive producers, Adam and Craig Malamut, are "two of the boldest and most irreverent voices" on television. The brothers are best known for their work on "Game of Zones," a popular "Game of Thrones" parody about the NBA that ran for seven seasons on Bleacher Report.

Sony Pictures Television Studios and the Malamut brothers did not immediately return a request for comment from Business Insider.

Read the original article on Business Insider