The Boondocks Season 1 and 2 Wrap-Up

I enjoyed watching this series because it made me laugh, cry (from the laughter), and think about the issues McGruder presented in each episode and how it affect my family, friends, my community and me. I did not realize that there were 30 episodes when the two seasons were combined. The good thing about that was my word count for the blog was not as much for others with blogs with fewer episodes as me.

Aaron McGruder

On the first third of the blog entries, I had saved all my blogs on word to a USB flash drive as Professor Dunphy advised. As the time for the blog due date approached I had decided to post them once I edited them one last time the Wednesday before the blogs were due. When I got home from school I was shocked and frustrated that, I had lost my USB flash drive. It was 11pm and I was up writing my blogs over from what I could remember of the blogs I first typed up. I did not finish typing them until 4 am and once I finished editing and adding pictures it was 5 in morning. Next time around I e-mailed all my blogs to myself to have a plan B just in case I had this problem again.

Regina King

Now that I have sheared my experience with writing this blog I found that it was actually fun to do even though this was my first time doing a blog. I enjoyed the first two seasons of The Boondocks and while I began watching the episodes the reruns of the third season began to air again. I watched a few but when I got to the episode that explained why Uncle Ruckus believed he was white and his hatred for black people I stopped following the season because I did not want it to effect my writing for my blog.

John Witherspoon

I think the most challenging part of this series was that McGruder wanted to put forth a cartoon satire series unlike that of Comedy Central’s South Park without seeming cliché or unrealistic in the eyes of his black audience. The Boondocks cartoon series only reminded me of South Park because of the vulgar things that are said on each show other than that the distinction is clear that they are conveying two different worlds in my opinion.

Gary Anthony Williams

The criticism I think only sparked people in media, the hip-hop community and other critics to watch the show. The fact that the series is on the Adult Swim programming block on the Cartoon Network is great for me because I think a lot of the people in my generation who grew up watching Nickelodeon and the Cartoon Network enjoy the programs these networks offer. I think some of the best 90’s cartoons come form these two networks alone and my viewer ship will never end unless the networks end. When I discovered Adult Swim, it was when I was still in junior high and I stayed up late to watch the anime cartoons that I never saw before and I was fascinated. In the day, I would watch my other shows on either network but Adult Swim was my new addiction but I digress.

Cedric Yaarborough

I think the least challenging thing McGruder did for the show was convey a message to his audience he wanted them to understand about black American culture. Many of the episodes focus on issues of social change within the black community that I thing McGruder made purposely to elicit change in his own people. The episode that opened my eyes to that idea was The Return of the King where Dr. King comes out of a coma to tell the people that they are a danger to themselves if they do not change their attitudes and ways of the black culture and risk losing it by not respecting it and themselves by becoming educated and striving to make change like their ancestors. I think it was not a hard for McGruder to portray this element of satire in his series because it is a problem that the black community has always been struggling with and are still trying to change.

Jill Talley

There were some reviews of the series that said that it was ignorant, that it was racist and that it was violent and I agree. These are aspects that McGruder depicts in his series only to elicit response from his audience and critics. I mean if reviewers and critics said nothing of the series then they would have not thought of it as significant enough to write about. There were other reviews of the series that I related to because instead of criticizing McGruder for his body of work they began to set forth their own campaign of getting their message across on a certain issue in the series. I appreciate that people are not trying to censor McGruder for telling it how it really is in our society.

Gabby Soleil

I think McGruder’s choice to do the episodes depicting rappers in the hip-hop community being gay was brave. I assumed that this would affect the willingness of other rappers to do voice parts for the series however; the hip-hop community seemed to embrace McGruder’s artistic view of their community. All the black community issues have influenced this series while the show has influenced the black community to make changes in the behavior like eating soul food and being ignorant to political and societal issues. I defiantly think that McGruder and his staff of writer want The Boondocks audience to be aware of the issues and try to make a change in our generation.

Carl Jones

During the first season the different episodes directed by Anthony Bell, Joe Horne, Seung Eun Kim, Kalvin Lee and Sean Song. Aaron McGruder the creator, Rodney Barnes, and Yamara Taylor, wrote episodes. The second season there was a change in directors where Seung Eun Kim and Dan Fausett directed this season. The writers were the same with the addition of two new writers Andre Brooks and Jason Van Veen. I was not interested in the creative team but thought I give them a paragraph since they help create the series along with McGruder and are an important element to the success of the show. I definitely think the show is a success mainly because of the popularity of the characters and the fact that Adult Swim has already aired the third season of the series.

Ed Asner

Throughout season one and two, I have come to understand Granddad, Huey and Riley’s characteristics. The oldest Huey is a self-proclaimed revolutionary whose duty it is to inform everyone around him of the government’s lies. He also is most rational one in the Freeman family who tries to do well but ends up letting Granddad and Riley fall on their butts when their schemes or plans backfire. Riley is the youngest and proclaims to a gangster who likes the idea of committing crimes and surrounding himself with people who share the same views. He is an excellent artist and with some guidance would be successful but he is money hungry and committed to the gangster lifestyle so who knows if he will use his graffiti skills to do something positive. Granddad is the guardian of two young boys, he has served his nation as a fighter pilot, he has served his community by participating in the civil rights movement and he is honoring his family by taking care of Huey and Riley. Granddad is an elderly man looking for love but in all the wrong places. A man of his age should be living off his retirement and planning his death not taking care of children. This makes Granddad seem very noble and I think he is grateful that they are there so he is not all alone.

Charlie Murphy

I noticed the first season when Ed III and Gin Rummy were introduced that McGruder seemed to slip in elements of Pulp Fiction being that the voice of Rummy was Samuel L. Jackson the co-star of the movie. This quote from the movie is said by Rummy in Let’s Nab Oprah episode when Riley seems to be confused by what Rummy says about the absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence. Now Riley and Rummy begin the quote:

Samuel L. Jackson

Riley: What?

Rummy: What country are you from?

Riley: What? What? Wh – ?

Rummy: “What” ain’t no country I’ve ever heard of. They speak English in What?

Riley: What?

Rummy: English, motherfucker, do you speak it?

Riley: Yeah!

Rummy: Then you know what I’m sayin’!

Riley: Yeah!

Rummy: The absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence!

Riley: What?

Rummy: Say ‘what’ again. Say ‘what’ again, I dare you, I double dare you motherfucker, say what one more Goddamn time!

Jim Meskimen

The ending of the second season made me want to see what else could McGruder come up with but it did not tie up enough loose ends for me. I still would like to know what happen to Huey and Riley’s parents, will Granddad find love, will McGruder develop friends for Huey and Riley like the one they had in the comic strip? There are many questions that season two left me but thank you to Adult Swim for picking the series up for another season so that I can find out if McGruder answers any of my inquires. I try to think about which episode is my favorite and to be honest I watched the first season nearly a hundred times because that was the only cartoon DVD that my boyfriend had that I would watch without going insane and really enjoyed. I love The Boondocks and I think it is my favorite cartoon series so I cannot pick just one episode.

Kym Whitely

The theme song is etched in my brain and I caught myself singing when I woke up for school one day. The song is called “Judo Flip” by rapper Asheru who one a Peabody Award for Journalism in reference to The Return of the King episode where Dr. King voiced by actor Kevin Michael Richardson recites lyrics from his song “Nigga.”

Kevin Michael Richaedson

Martin Luther King Jr.: Will you ignorant niggers PLEASE shut the hell UP? Is this it? THIS is what I got all those ass-whoopings for? I had a dream once but it was a dream that little black girls and black boys would one day drink from the river of prosperity freed from the thirst of oppression. But lo and behold, some four decades later, what have I found, but a bunch of trifling, shiftless, good for nothing niggers! And I know some of you don’t want to hear me say that word! It’s the ugliest word in the English language! But that’s what I see now! NIGGERS! And you don’t want to be a nigger! Because niggers are living contradictions! Niggers are full of unfulfilled ambitions! Niggers wax and wane! Niggers love to complain! Niggers love to hear themselves talk but hate to explain! Niggers love being another man’s judge and jury! Niggers procrastinate until it’s time to worry! Niggers LOVE to be late! Niggers HATE to hurry! Black Entertainment Television is the WORST thing I’ve ever seen in my life! Usher, Michael Jackson is not a genre of music! And don’t get me started on Soul Plane! I’ve seen what’s around the corner! I’ve seen what’s over the horizon! And I PROMISE you, you niggers have nothing to celebrate! I know I won’t get there with you, because I’m going to Canada!

Affion Crockett

I also like the songs that were made throughout the seasons like “Booty Butt Cheeks”, “Homie’s Ova Hoes” and “Thugin’ Luv” because they highlight the most memorable part of a song, the chorus, and they make me laugh when I think about the episode behind the song. I did not have to convince any of my family or friends to watch this show. My mom and older sister watched it all the time and wanted to see the DVD before I returned it to Netflix. I watched it with my best friend who is a film major at Brooklyn College and she would come to my house or ask me to come over so she could watch The Boondocks and she does not like comedies or satire. I think by doing the assignment I have found new viewers who appreciate the series as much as I do

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The Boondocks Season 2 Epsiode 15: The Uncle Ruckus Reality Show

The follow-up to the last episode The Hunger Strike, this episode is about what the title says Uncle Ruckus’s show about the life of Ruckus. The head of BET Company suggested to Debra Leevil the president of the network that Ruckus should have his owns how. Leevil not only wants the shows on BET to be terrible and be evil. I think that McGruder had made the episode The Hunger Strike and The Uncle Reality Show all together and decided to make this portion the ending episode of the season.

Uncle Ruckus has a known hatred for black people and thinks that the color of his skin is a disease that turned his white skin darker. The show follows Ruckus throughout his neighborhood, around his home, and conveys his thoughts and anecdotes he seems to say within the series two seasons.

Tom encourages Ruckus to take a genealogy test but finds out that he is 100% African descent. He truly believed that he was not black but now he begins to come to terms with his identity. Instead being in denial, he does try imposing change on his fellow black man by telling some people who instead of complaining they should do something. He does however keep his tone of being racist toward his own kind but I guess he is used to being that way.

Saddened by his realization Ruckus does not want to live and even with the cameras following him the producers on site do not try to stop him until Wedgie Rudlin voiced by Donald Faison the main producer of the show stops him from doing so. He relates to Ruckus by not having much in common with the black community that he Debra Leevil, and Ruckus despise.

I think that the doctor who did Ruckus’s genealogy test was persuaded by the executives at BET to tell Ruckus his results were false because Ruckus seemed to embody their idea of destroying black people and doing and saying whatever to make that happen. At some point, they could use Ruckus to help them succeed but until McGruder makes that episode, we will never know. I think that I have more percent of white in my genes than Ruckus I doubt he is 50% Caucasian. I rate this episode a 4 out of 5.

The Boondocks Season 2 Episode 14: The Hunger Strike

I did not care for this episode very much because right before watching it I had watched the Anniversary episode of my only favorite BET show 106 & Park. I liked the show since it first began and thought of it as the BET version of TRL. I was so upset however that they got new hosts nothing against Rocsi and Terrance but I liked the dynamic between the first hosts Free and AJ.

In this episode, Riley is convinced that the president of the BET network Debra Leevil voiced by comedian Debra Wilson wants the destruction of black people. The network is a vessel in which she can influence the black community to self-destruct and Huey speaks to the media in order to get his message about his hunger strike out to other black people in his community. All this does is attracts Rev. Rollo Goodlove who only seems to be in it for profit. He claims he wants to help Huey but only allows his scandals to be mixed up with Huey’s boycott of the BET network.

Granddad and Riley are not supportive and continue to eat while Huey is on his hunger strike. Huey’s determination and sacrifice seems to pay off when black people begin to join the boycott of the BET network. However, the boycott ended when Rev. Goodlove sold out to get his own television show on BET. The network had not given into any of Huey’s demands and exploited Rev. Goodlove in the process. I rate this episode a 3 out of 5.

The Boondocks Season 2 Episode 13: The story of Gangstalicious 2

The sequel episode to season one’s episode The Story of Ganstalicious, I at least knew who the episode was going to be about. Riley still friends with Ganstalicious after the trouble they got into before showed that he was his true fan.

This episode picks up where the last one does of Riley telling Huey about Ganstalicious kissing his lover Lincoln. Riley is oblivious to the fact that Ganstalicious is gay. He cannot see that his favorite rapper likes men. I think this is why he still keeps in contact with Ganstalicious. Huey tries to convince Riley that Gangstalicious is gay and even that Riley thinks that other people are gay.

Granddad believes that Ganstalicious has influenced him to be gay. Ganstalicious releases a song call “ Homies Ova Hoes” which Riley and other rappers like Thugnificent and his Lethal Injection Crew believe that it means putting your male friends over everyone else. I think that McGruder began to address the bro-mance a loving relationship between two male friends that many men have nowadays.

The success of his single “Homies Ova Hoes” led Gangstalicious to creating his own line of clothing. It is evident from his clothing line that Gangstalicious is not designing for gangsters. Riley gets some samples of the clothes and because of his membership to Thugnificent’s Lethal Injection Crew he wants Gangstalicious to allow Thugnificent to do the remix to his song “Homies Ova Hoes.” Riley, Thugnificent, his crew and other young Gangstalicious fans wear his fashions. I do not know how any of them did not realize they are wearing girl clothes. I mean tank tops that expose your stomach, shorts with the flap over the front, and pearls are definitely the things that I have sometime in my life as a female.

Everything seems great until a video model releases her tell all book about her life sleeping with rappers. She writes that Gangstalicious is gay which make Riley think that people might think he is gay and Thugnificent is left to wonder whether he should do the remix. Riley comes to the realization that Gangstalicious is gay but Granddad comforts him because he is only a child who is trying to understand his sexuality once his favorite rapper/idol is proven to be gay. I rate this episode a 4 out of 5.

The Boondocks Season 2 Episode 12: The Story of Catcher Freeman

The story of Catcher Freeman is still not clear to me after Uncle Ruckus’s, Granddad’s, and Huey’s account of who he was besides the fact that he was Granddad’s great-great-great-grandfather. It saddens me that I might never find out the part of Africa my ancestors belonged. Black Americans mainly have the history of their southern ancestors that were shipped to the United States for the slave trade.

Many people believed that the Holocaust did not happen much like Riley did not believe that slavery happened. I think he denied it because he does not want to face the ugly history of America. I honestly wished it had not happened because it spawned a life of a word discussed in the episode The S-Word.

Catcher Freeman voiced by actor Donald Faison was a black slave yet the son of his white master. Lighter skinned children of slaves came from the rapes that slave masters did because slaves were considered the property of the slave owner. He would be known as a house nigger because he was lighter than the other slaves in those times. He was more educated than the other slaves because he had access to the literature in the house and maybe because his father was the slave master. However when one slave who seem to be like their Harriet Tubman a woman named Thelma Freeman voice by actress Crystal Scales was willing to rise up and convince the other slaves to do so as well in order to seek freedom.

Ruckus’s account of Catcher Freeman’s life was far-fetched and only relays his hatred for black people. Granddad’s story seemed to make Cather seem more courageous and heroic, because of Ruckus’s story, I think Granddad inflated his story a bit. Huey’s story seemed more factual because it was from an internet source. I think I believe Huey’s story most because he is the most rational character in the cartoon series. I rate this episode a 4 out of 5.

The Boondocks Season 2 Episode 11: The S-Word

I honestly thought the S-word the title meant was sh*t but after watching this episode McGruder clearly was taking about the N-word. This episode introduces the media enthusiastic activist Rev. Rollo Goodlove voiced by rapper Cee-Lo. The similarities to Rev. Al Sharpton is noticed but may have been embellished by McGruder.

We give words meaning in our society and the culture in which the word is used will be deemed negative or positive. The N-word is one word that was meant to hurt, demean, and oppress a group of people during slavery and well after the civil rights movement. Now I think people still let history allow them to hold onto a word whose meaning was negative but use it as a term of endearment with other black Americans although they get upset when another race uses the word.

Riley took advantage of this in this episode and accused his teacher Mr. Petto of calling him the N-word in class. The teacher did call him the N-word but only because he thought that black people use the word so it was all right for him to use it. Riley and Granddad alert activist Rev. Rollo Goodlove in order to get money from the board of education for I am guessing is emotional distress. Neither Riley , Granddad nor anyone need to exploit the school system that way because its bad enough there is not much money to fund publics schools in the first place.

It seemed after watching this episode not only did Riley and Granddad want to cash in on this incident so did Rev. Goodlove and other media personalities like Ann Culter voiced by Jill Talley. Although once the board of education declined to give them any money Rev. Goodlove was off to setting off his next claim to fame with a book and a possible TV show. I rate this episode 4 out of 5.

The Boondocks Season 2 Episode 10: Home Alone

The title to me gave me the idea of the holiday classic Home Alone starring Macaulay Culkin. After watching I realized that McGruder only used the same title and the fact that the boys were home alone but not the plot of the movie. Granddad leaves the boys home alone to go on vacation, which I think he was wanting sometime away from Huey and Riley who can be a handful.

The boys were basically blacklisted from all babysitting websites and Granddad found a flaw in the babysitter that he thought was perfect for the position. Uncle Ruckus was asked to watch Huey and Riley while Granddad was away. I think that even though Uncle Ruckus hates black people and himself for being black, he finds friendship in Granddad. This is probably the only reason why he agreed to watch Huey and Riley because in the first episode Ruckus was opposed to the idea of the Freeman’s especially the boys moving into Woodcrest.

Of course, Huey and Riley are not happy they have a babysitter nor that Granddad has gone on vacation without them. I think that Huey blames Riley for driving Granddad away and thinks that he is not coming back home. It was notable that they work best together evident when they succeeded in getting rid of Ruckus. However, their coordination seemed no more once Huey realized that he had to take charge of the house because he is the oldest. Riley on the other hand wanted to be wild and out of control and not thinking about the consequences of him being so.

It was very funny to me that in order to keep Riley from acting out Huey ties him up and even goes so far as to putting him in the closet. The constant surveillance on Riley has left Huey tired and unfocused which leads to Riley escaping. I think if they had worked together once they got rid of Ruckus then they would be lest worried about whether or not Granddad would com home. They could have cleaned up, spent the money on food, and rationed it until they heard from Granddad in my opinion. In real life however, a good neighbor like Tom who is a district attorney would have called child services and the boys would be put in a foster home because of Granddad’s actions. I rate this episode a 4 out of 5.

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