In 2018, we reported that ABC and Black-ish creator Kenya Barris had “mutually agreed” to shelve an episode of the hit sitcom over “creative differences” between Barris and the network—the official story being that neither party was “happy with the direction of the episode” and that everyone involved thought it would be best to keep it on the shelf. That, obviously, seemed like bullshit, so it wasn’t particularly surprising at all when Barris left regular TV for a $100 million Netflix deal a few months later.
The episode in question, “Please, Baby, Please,” was originally supposed to air in November of 2017 and was based around Anthony Anderson’s character reading a bedtime story to his young son during a storm. As it goes on, though, he starts giving up on the book so he can air out some of his anxieties about life in modern-day America, including an argument with his oldest son about athletes kneeling during the national anthem. The episode also apparently contains some comments about Trump that the network (and its bosses at Disney) were uncomfortable with, but as we’re approaching 200,000 people dead from the coronavirus in the U.S., it seems downright absurd to give a fuck about offending Trump.
So, finally, Barris has managed to convince Disney to release “Please, Baby, Please” on Hulu, explaining in an Instagram post that he was and still is “incredibly proud” of it (so much for mutually agreeing that it was better to not air it) and that he hopes it inspires “some much-needed conversation” about how we got to the moment we’re in and how we can move past it. The episode is currently available to stream under the page for the show’s fourth season.