Monday, September 3, 2007

Coming attraction: ‘The Boondocks’ (Season 2)

I tip my hat to Afronerd, which is where I first saw the 3-minute, uncensored trailer for the new season of “The Boondocks.” (Fresh episodes are due on the Cartoon Network starting October 8.)

Here’s the thing about “The Boondocks.” The comic strip was so funny and audacious, I was ready to put Aaron McGruder on the list of all-time-great black American satirists (with the likes of Darius James, Pedro Bell and Paul Mooney).

But the TV show, for some reason, I never got into. Maybe I need to get the Season 1 DVDs and take it all in. But... I don’t know. I even saw the notorious Martin Luther King episode, and it didn’t hit me as audaciously funny. It was just kinda flatfooted and shrill.

(But the animation is top-notch, I must say.)

Any “Boondocks” fans out there wanna tell me what I’m missing?

17 comments:

DeAngelo Starnes said...

I like the show, but the strip is much better than the show. It's a little over the top, and like you said, "shrill." If the subtleties played out, the point would come across better than the standard build-up to the punchline approach. With that said, it's still funnier, and more relevant, than 99% of the garbage on television.

Undercover Black Man said...

Thanks, DeAngelo. What I loved about the strip was that it was so subtle. His touch was perfect.

But, yeah, I need to sit down with Season 1, start to finish.

ItAintEazy said...

Yeah, the series was a bit of a letdown because it got too topical. I thought the strip was at its best when it focused on the "life in the suburbs" situations instead of general rants against the Bush, Rummy and Condi Rice.

justjudith said...

ubm: i'd try to sway you but i agree. i really dug the strip but the show didn't make me laugh at all. in a way, i found the show kind of forced or something.

odocoileus said...

The show just doesn't follow good sitcom structure. In order to work, in order to actually be funny, there has to be a good story. You hang everything else - satire, parody, political advocacy - onto the story structure like lights on a Xmas tree.

There are plenty of individual scenes that are brilliant, and that do stuff rarely if ever seen on TV. No stories to tie it all together though.

jena6 said...

Yesterday I started watching the only episode that I hadn't seen, Ep. 14., "The Block is Hot."

I didn't really read the strip so I can't begin to compare the two.

jjbrock said...

I am a 50 year old female and I like the show it is funny and has a good message to me. I never got into the strip.

daughterofthedream said...

The strip rocks but the show was hit or miss with me.

I also don't like Huey's voice (sorry, Regina!) and the grandfather's voice (I pictured him sounding like a n old school jazz musician, NOT John Witherspoon whose voice sometimes makes him sound like he's coonin').

Keep an eye out for the Thuggin' Love ep about rappers (I think Mos Def was a voice), the only one that made me laugh more than 3 times.

BlindSquirrel said...

I never read the strip so I came to the completely fresh. I think the show is hilarious and salute the gigantic BALLS to tackle some of sensitve topics. It's amazing what animation can get away with.

justjudith said...

i think i agree with daughter of the dream. it might be the voices that bother me too. and then the fact that it didn't crack me up. but i think it has a point of view that some people love, including my nephew.

Dan Coyle said...

I agree that the show is shrill in a way that the strip wasn't. I didn't like the focus on all-new characters,like the two wanna be white gangstas- the producers seemed to think by having them voiced by two promient black actors it would automatically be funny, when it wasn't.

The lemonade stand episode I found the most... aggravating? I just found it hard to believe that people would be THAT cruel to Jasmine because she can't make a lemonade that fast.

When I read about MacGruder speaking at colleges, he always seems to be downbeat and saying everything is your fault, etc. Perhaps the show is infected by his darkening worldview. There doesn't seem to be any immediacy, just sullen resignation.

CM said...

Shrill is accurate. I loved the strip, but hated the show. Then I realized that 3 2x2 inch panels in a newspaper communicate a very different emotion than a 22-minute animated TV show. They are 2 very different beings, like apples and oranges. You either like one or the other or both, but you never try to say one is better.

Undercover Black Man said...

^ Yeah, CM, but you can say McGruder executed better in one medium than the other.

dez said...

I love the strip and like the show. The show is rather hit-and-miss, but when it hits, it hits hard.

Ibrahim Nur said...

I'm not a fan of the show, so I'm going to link to John Mcwhorter's analysis of it.

http://www.nysun.com/article/28816

JUDAH CHRIST said...

YOU DONT HAVE TO LIKE THE SHOW BECUZ ITS FOR THE YOUTH * THE WAY THE CONVERSATION IS GOING DOWN IN HERE IT SOUNDS LIKE MOST OF YOU ARE WELL OVER THIRTY * ITS LIKE THE OLD WHITE PEOPLE WHO RUN THE RADIO AND B.E.T DECIDING WHATS GOOD FOR THE YOUNG BLACK MEN AND WOMEN * AS FOR ITS ADAPTATION FROM SCRIPT TO SCREEN , OF COURSE ITS GONNA BE DIFFERENT * 3-5 PANELS VS. 22 MINUTES IS HUGE , AND OUR GENERATION IS DEFINITELY THE ATTENTION DEFICIENT ONE , SO IT FITS OUR ...HOW CAN I SAY ..."SWAGGER" * ITS AN AWESOME SHOW THAT GETS MORE POINTS ACROSS THAN ANY GARBAGE I'VE SEEN AND THE FACT THAT ITS ANIMATED IS AWESOME BECUZ I MIGHT BE ABLE TO SNEAK IT TO SOME KIDS AND HAVE DISCUSSIONS WITH THEM ABOUT WHAT THEY THINK ABOUT IT *

GREAT JOB YO !

khushi said...

Yeah, the Bondocks Online was a bit of a letdown because it got too topical.n order to work, in order to actually be funny, there has to be a good story.but i think it has a point of view that some people love, including my nephew.