Aaron, you outdid yourself this time bro. But in a good way.
If you're reading this article, you have the same question that millions of American christian citizens have as well. Is Aaron McGruder's 'Black Jesus' a Blasphemous hit TV show? Is it appropriate? Should it be banned from TV? Yeah, everybody has their opinions and beliefs - especially questions. The answer? ... Well, nobody knows that. Not even us.
“Black Jesus” is a new comedy from “The Boondocks” creator Aaron McGruder and the season premiere aired Thursday night (Aug 7) on Adult Swim. The show finds 'Jesus' (Gerald “Slink” Johnson) living in present day Compton, CA on a daily mission to spread love and kindness throughout the neighborhood with the help of his small but loyal group of downtrodden followers.
Honestly, before watching the first episode titled, “Smokin’ Drinkin’ And Chillin,” I didn't know what to expect. We all know McGruder creates controversial shows, but nothing as stirring as this. After the episode was finished, my stomach was in knots - and not from sickness, but in pain from dying laughing. I couldn't help myself but to roll on the floor to let my abdomen muscles stretch out to comfort the tension. I couldn't believe what I just saw, so I watched it again. And once again, I lay on the floor holding my hurting stomach.
I went online to see what others thought, and as expected, the world is in an uproar. There are millions of people, including big organizations (American Family Association, One Million Moms) trying to 'ban' the show and get it pulled off the air. Isn't this what Rev. Al Sharpton tried to do to McGruder's animated series, 'The Boondocks' - for the obsessive usage of the 'N' word? Yeah, it sure is. People are heated about Black Jesus, which is trending on many major websites (Huffington Post, TIME, Twitter, etc;) But then, there are websites like us who look past the surface.
McGruder's artistic iteration of a black Jesus is his opinion and perception, period. I myself am a believer in Jesus Christ and Christianity. However, I wasn't offended at all. Yes, McGruder's creative depiction of Jesus smokes weed, drinks liquor and uses profanity. He rolls with a bunch of thugs, criminals and low lives. He turns water into Hennessy. He does pickups for drugs. I get why many across the world are upset, I truly do. But folks, you gotta understand that we live in America - and every person has the freedom to express themselves. Including McGruder.
Christopher House, Ph.D., who writes for the Huffington Post states: "Rather than simply dismissing the show as being blasphemous, maybe we should continue to watch with an awareness of contemporary issues and a strong sense of irony. To do so, would ask us to consider what then does it mean to have a black Jesus living and moving in impoverished black spaces?" Honestly, I think the millions of people should consider this point. Maybe McGruder's objective in 'Black Jesus' was to show the various problems in our urban societies, and to bring humor to these issues from a religious standpoint relatable to those who live in impoverished areas. But at the same time, familiarizing the idea that Jesus is omnipresent.
My opinion? I see the underlying messages in the show as being 'ironically' educating. It seems that the world feels the show is a disgrace, but my perception is in agreeance to Christopher House, Ph.D. We should look beneath the surface at the real point being made. As of now, it's too early to see the full picture - at least not after just the first episode. We should watch with our eyes and minds open, knowing what we all personally believe in, and just be entertained.
Let's ease up off of McGruder and not 'Judge' him. That's what Black Jesus would say.