The Boondocks: "The Color Ruckus"
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The Boondocks: "The Color Ruckus"

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The Boondocks

"The Color Ruckus"

Season 3, Episode 14

Holla, Boondocks set!

Here we are for "The Color Ruckus", which, lacking any contraindication, is the penultimate episode ever of African-America's Favorite Family.  This one, obviously, is Ruckus-centric, which always promises mad craziness, especially with the arrival of the whole Ruckus famalam.  I hoped for a good ep, anyway, too keep me from cryin' out my good eye over the departure of this much-improved show.

Our weekly visit to Woodcrest kicks off with what passes for Ruckus' origin story, as he details the heartbreak of re-vitiligo and his subsequent abandonment and adoption by a highly dysfunctional black family.  His extremely dramatic life story is interrupted by the arrival of Uncle R.'s impossibly ancient Nana Nellie), who is not long for this world (she's been on the verge of death for around sixty years), and who has decided to kick the bucket in Robert Freeman's house, because, why not?  It is, you must admit, a pretty nice house.

Nana Freeman (memorably voiced by an incredibly foul-mouthed Star Jones) is a force of nature, a horrible, abusive, razor-toting lunatic, but she's merely the worst of a bad bunch:  his father is a hateful jackass who hates white people as much as Ruckus hates blacks -- albeit not without cause -- and his mother is a cringing bottle blonde whose worship of Whitey helped make him so neurotically fond of crackers.  His two brothers, who resemble Bill Cosby and Mr. T after a few decades of soft suburban living, are both Uncle Toms.  Once Nana finally kicks off, Ruckus buries her (at a discount, since gravedigging is one of his 47 jobs), and at the funeral, her hatred lives on, dragging his abusive father into the grave with her, to a fairly diffident reaction from the family.

This one was, like most Ruckus episodes, so over-the-top and crazy that it was hilarious for almost its entire run-time.  The parodies of Afro-suffering narratives, The Color Purple in particular, were pretty good, especially with the running commentary on them provided by the Freemans.  It also had a surprisingly sweet, if rather bleak ending, and some really top-notch animation.  There were few slow spots, plenty of great lines, and the focus was diffused enough that it didn't leave the Freemans entirely in the background.  Overall, a real winner!  Next week, a Jack Ryan be-alike arrives in Woodcrest to prevent a terror attack possibly spearheaded by Huey Freeman.  They're still advertising this as the season finale and not the series finale, so maybe we'll get lucky, but either way, I hope y'all will join me.

Rating:  A-

Stray Observations:

- "She gonna be dead in a few seconds, just you wait."

- "Frolic your ass to the store and get me some beer, nigga."

- Uncle Ruckus' brothers are named Darryl and Darrell.  Nice Newhart reference.

- "George Washington Carver was the man responsible for more peanut allergy deaths than any man in history."

- "I ain't gonna cry because that's gay, but it is real sad."

- "I'll leave when I'm dead.  Ain't y'all got any food in this raggedy-ass fuckin' mansion?"

- "You think you impatient?  I been waitin' to die since you were born, you worthless bastard."

- "Is that what you've accomplished with your life, boy?  Being a Mexican?  You don't even gotta speak English to be a Mexican.  Whose fault is it that you became a professional Mexican?"

- "Yes!  Now I can marry my white lover!"

- "Maybe it was time for me to stop hating the black man, and start sympathizing with him for his obvious inferiority to whites."