Check out our recap of episode 2 of Donald Glover’s all new “Atlanta”
We recently attended an exclusive screening of episodes 1 & 2 of Atlanta, written, directed by and starring Donald Glover at the Paley Center. The screening was followed by a panel Q & A which you can check out here.
After both screenings an audience member asked if it was Donald Glover’s intention to depict police brutality in the style of social commentary. Glover responded that it wasn’t his intention to make the show important he just wanted it to be funny and honest. He mentioned how unique it is that said scene has had the power to elicit both laughter and silence from different people.
Episode two opens at the station where Alfred and earn have been brought in after the shooting. After a few minutes Alfred’s charges are processed and he’s made bail. While Alfred adjusts to his newly acquired fame and impact, Earn spends the remainder of the episode in jail. Albeit unintentional, the episode simultaneously and poignantly Depicts The gruesome reality of dealing with the justice system and gun violence in black communities. The homophobia, the sexism and the racism are all ever present in this episode. On one hand we see how Alfred’s actions from the night before, the actions of a somewhat well-known rapper, directly impact the actions of his community and their youth. On the other hand we see how even the innocent or mentally ill are neglected and mistreated.
While unaffected by the shooting on The surface, Alfred is not his usual idle self and goes for a walk rather than smoking weed. While out he’s sees a group of kids imitating Paperboy by shooting each other. Alfred is bothered and even intervenes. He doesn’t want to be the cause of violence in a younger generation that looks up to him.
While Earn waits to be processed, he’s given questionable food, he’s not allowed to sleep and has strange encounters with several people, one of whom returns each week. This man is presumably ill and yet no medical action is taken, instead he’s a regular at the holding cell. After spitting water onto a guard, the mentally ill man is forcibly restrained and tazed. This is Earn’s first time in jail and unlike many other television shows his experience isn’t dramatized or ghetto glamorized, it’s comedic at times, but more than anything else, it’s real.
Even though the show is not a political commentary on society and even though there’s a scene with magic chicken wings, the candor and honesty with which each arc is depicted beautifully shows the dichotomy of Atlanta and of America. Donald Glover truly does not disappoint. Don’t miss Atlanta coming to FX on September 6th.