The Boondocks comic strip turned cartoon penned by Aaron McGruder which is known for sticking a big middle finger to the “establishment” debuted Sunday on The Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim
The cartoon stars Huey Freedman, voiced by Regina King, a pro-black, angry, self-righteous 10-year-old. Huey’s little brother Riley, also voiced by King, who is obsessed with everything hip-hop and their Granddad, Robert, voiced by John Witherspoon, a cranky, old school black guy. The cartoon starts where the comic strip did, when Huey and Riley move from Chicago‘s South Side to the suburbs the “boondocks” with their Granddad. The kids aren’t happy with the move.
Those who aren’t familiar with The Boondocks will be shocked. The cartoon wastes no time with insulting everyone including what some might consider “off limits” topics including race and religion. Fans of the strip will immediately recognize elements from the strip and appreciate them being brought to life.
In the first three minutes we are presented with three n-bombs (a frequent occurrence in the strip and show) and Huey’s ideologies, “Jesus was black, Ronald Regan was the devil and the government is lying about 9/11.” Other seemingly shocking elements were a black manservant by the name of Uncle Ruckas, who represented an Uncle Tom type character. He happily performed a song about the Freedman’s that went “Can’t trust those new n—-rs” at a garden party. Huey found himself stumped when while trying to rile up garden party guests about 9/11 and Jesus. Instead of reacting the guests complemented Riley on how articulate he was on how well he speaks.
This episode was an introduction to Huey’s world. New fans will be drawn in to see how far this cartoon will push the envelope. McGruder is known for going over the edge causing his strip to be pulled from newspapers several times.
The only negative of the cartoon was King’s voicing of the two main characters. Although it is common practice in the cartoon world for women to voice young boy characters, Riley sounded too much like girl. King’s voice may be too familiar to fans to distinguish between the person and the character.
For the next episode, fans will be happy that the vague ‘I’ve seen this episode’ feeling will go away.
You can watch The Boondocks Sunday’s at 11pm. Look out for “mini” commercials where the network answers fan mail. They are almost as hilarious as the show.