Animation is a field where The Culture has been underrepresented but has still managed to create a fare share of classics and today’s #CultureClassics is one of the best black created cartoons ever made, the political and satirical show The Boondocks.
The Boondocks is an adult themed animated sitcom created by Aaron McGruder. The series premiered on November 6, 2005 on the Cartoon Network exploring the plight of the semi-dysfunctional black family, the Freemans, moving from inner city Chicago into the white suburb of Woodcrest. This mixture of cultures, lifestyles, social classes, stereotypes, viewpoints and racialized identities provided the perfect setup for much of the series’ biting satire, comedy, and deceptively deep social commentary.
The show stars a trio of hilarious and memorable characters. Brothers Huey and Riley (both voiced by Oscar winner Regina King) and Grandad (voiced by comedic legend John Witherspoon). 10-year-old Huey Freeman is the family’s moral compass and voice of reason. He’s intelligent and wise-beyond-his-years. He is heavily influenced by the theories of various left-wing social movements and social justice leaders. Riley is a mischievous, rebellious 8-year-old who is an enthusiastic follower of Urban Gangster Rap/Hip Hop culture. Grandad is their legal guardian, and while he loves his two grandsons, he’s not a fan of their wisecracking observations, constant schemes, and misadventures.
Everyone in The Culture was either a guest star or a target of the shows satire. From Oprah Winfrey, Maya Angelou, and Bill Cosby, to appearances and parodies of R. Kelly and his trial for sexual misconduct and DMX’s disbelief when told about Barack Obama. There’s even an infamous episode envisioning Dr, Martin Luther King returning and reprimanding black people for their political and social apathy. Nothing was sacred and no one was safe. McGruder created a show that was both funny and satirical that still was political and kept it quite real which was a major part of the shows appeal and made it a must-watch for anyone repping The Culture (even now) and a true #CultureClassic.
#FunFacts: The concept originally began as a comic strip on Hitlist.com and was later picked up by The Source magazine and was then nationally syndicated in major newspapers through the country before McGruder was finally able to turn it into a television series.
If you enjoyed that look at a throwback TV classic. Check out more of our #CultureClassics:
- #CultureClassics – A Different World
- #CultureClassics – Chappelle’ s Show
- #CultureClassics – Yo! MTV Raps
Written by creator for The Culture @TalentedMrFord