You must be living under a rock if you haven’t heard about Atlanta. It’s okay, I got you. Let me shed some light on this greatness. Atlanta was created by Donald Glover and takes place in the titular city. It premiered in 2016 and it’s back for season 2 after a year-long hiatus.
For those who don’t know what Atlanta is about, it’s actually kind of hard to explain. At its base, it revolves around the life of Earnest “Earn” Marks (played by Donald Glover). He is a Princeton dropout who is down on his luck. He has no money, is practically homeless, and is struggling to maintain his interpersonal relationships with his friends, family, and estranged ex-girlfriend. However, when Earn realizes his cousin Alfred “Al” Miles (played by Brian Tyree Henry) is on the rise of breaking into the local rap scene, he jumps on the chance to manage Al in hopes of getting his life back together.
But once you get past the overall scope of the show, you realize it’s a lot more than that;or maybe even nothing. The truth is, no one really knows what’s going on, but events are happening and you can be sure to relate to some of them.
Have you ever gotten questioned for ordering a kids’ meal even though you are clearly not a kid and there isn’t one next to you? Have you ever escaped to the bathroom to call your friend in a panic to have them spot you $20 because the date got a little too expensive? Have you ever tried to act like you’re part of a group just to fit in because it’ll make you look better in comparison?
Atlanta plays out these scenes in the most realistic ways that will have you laughing and thinking, “Damn, now if this ain’t me.”
The biggest appeal Atlanta has to its viewers is how abstract it is. It has these moments where you think it may not be possible and yet, you kind of just go with it because the rest of the characters do. No one knows what to expect from life in the same way you don’t know what to expect from Atlanta. It’s full of mystery and intrigue and it’s genuinely real even at its most absurd moments. To sum it up, Atlanta is about life and all the pleasures and struggles it gives us.
Now I will admit, I am a bit biased towards this show because I love everything about Donald Glover. I consider him a modern day renaissance man and a personal role model. He is a person of color that is achieving his dreams and excelling at it. He is an actor, rapper, writer, comedian, actor, director, and producer. Glover won two Emmys and two Golden Globes for the first season of Atlanta and was regarded as one of the best comedy shows of 2016 . It is truly groundbreaking and paving the way for more stories to be told from people of color. The world is ready for more shows like Atlanta and I’m glad Donald Glover is the pioneer for it.
New episodes of Atlanta air on FX on Thursdays at 10 p.m. The full season is available on Hulu for streaming and for your binge watching needs.