ABC’s Black-ish has become famous for its adept way of weaving together comedy and social commentary.
That trend will continue with its fourth season premiere, which is inspired by the Broadway phenomenon Hamilton.
Executive producer/writer Kenya Barris explained the origins of the episode to the LA Times.
“I’ve seen Hamilton a ton of times,” said Barris. “The thing that got me about it is the idea of a historically contextual piece that speaks to what an American story is. That’s what Black-ish is. It’s a contemporary piece that speaks to the texture of what America is.”
The premiere features Jack and Diane in a school musical celebrating Columbus Day. Of course Dre is upset about this and uses his job to start a campaign highlighting Juneteenth. Singer Aloe Blacc becomes involved in his shenanigans.
It was a conversation with his son that led Barris to the idea.
“He was talking to me about Columbus and said, ‘Dad, you know Columbus never actually set foot in North America?’ I looked at him and said, ‘I think you’re mistaken, son.’ I thought he had just read the books wrong,” he said. “But, I started researching it, and I was blown away. Not only did Columbus not step foot in North America, he wasn’t the person who discovered the world wasn’t flat. His name wasn’t even really Christopher Columbus.”
“All these things we had been told in a false way. Why is it that we have a holiday for this guy? I started thinking about Juneteenth, being an American and acknowledging that slavery happened,” he said. “There’s never been one person prosecuted for slavery in the history of the country. So we never got a reset button. It was like, ‘OK, it’s over.’ So morally, we understand that slavery was wrong as a country, but there was no criminality put to it.”
With Hamilton as the inspiration, there will be a musical element to the episode.
Season four of Black-ish premieres Tuesday, Oct. 3 at 9 pm.
Are you excited to see Black-ish go all Hamilton in the premiere?
Source: Shadow and Act