Boondocks – the season you waited for

By Michael Vass | May 7, 2010

The Boondocks is quite a television show. It infuriates, it’s honest, and it’s crude. It captures many of the highs and lows of today’s Black culture. It is brilliant even as it is being ignorant.

The new season has brought about various comments already.

There are a lot of people who share Aaron McGruder’s views, but the composite he presents is unique,” said [Writer RK Byers]. “When ‘Boondocks’ came out it was literate, funny and geared towards a black intelligentsia that a lot of people couldn’t even imagine existed.”

Couldn’t imagine? Or is it refused to accept? Such a fine line is one the television show often walks, often hurdles past. It evokes responses like the following from a fan on Facebook

“wow, ur a fool if u can’t appreciate the content of boondocks, it is not a show created just to “make fun of the black community” it’s a show to make a statment about the ignorance within it. while the content is put forth in an entertaining way, by making caricatures out of its characters, i do believe the the creator did so to be able to reach more than he would by just directly speaking on. do i think that the show is irresponsible…yes, i think any social topic that we poke fun of to bring light to is irresponsible, how to we take responsibility? we talk about it, we recognize it, we embrace the message and we address the problems it brings to light. don’t be mad at the show, take action in the community.”

But I found the season 3 priemere to be most funny, and most bitingly accurate in the first 10 minutes.

It made me reflect on my writing for TV One covering the 2008 election, and the mania of the time. Then came the election and a bit of reality.

Culminating in Huey proclaiming after being asked if he has any final thoughts,

“Yeah, I’m retired.”

In many ways this episode was everything that the famous (or infamous depending on your view) Return of the King episode was. A sobering look at our past, and the reality of our now. But where does the show go from this point?

A Black President is a reality. Racial equality did not descend upon America like a gentle summer breeze. The problems of international politics have not resolved themselves. Political promises have been broken or ignored by the dozens. Change has resulted in more of the same, is only more extreme, partisan politics. In such a climate can fans of Aaron McGruder continue to appreciate his biting humor and social commentary?

The answer may come Sunday on Adult Swim, as we learn what a retired Huey will do next. But somehow I expect that the answer will be less to the liking of many African Americans still enamored with President Obama as the Black President, while the black intelligentsia may find themselves even more isolated than ever before.

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