problem I’m happy not to have
Rosa Parks passed on Monday.
On Monday, Newsweek published an interview with Boondock’s creator Aaron McGruder, on his upcoming Adult Swim show. In the episode they preview, Rosa Parks is a character. Not just a character, but…
At one point, a spandex-sporting woman hits Parks in the head with a chicken leg. “Sit down!” she yells at Parks. “That’s what you’re known for anyway.”
It doesn’t read like Parks is the one being ridiculous, but in an insane situation. (Then again, in Boondocks, everyone’s acting ridiculous or being ridiculed in some manner.) Being so after her death, there will be those angry with McGruder for even associating her with people acting foolish, regardless if her character acts similar. (Then again too, there always are people angry with him.)
In the article, it’s pretty clear McGruder was hoping for a loud backlash to the cartoon, as proof people are watching and are reacting to his messages. Parks’ post-mortem inclusion will provide the response he’s looking for in a way a forbidden 6 letter expletive could not, and there will be pressure on him between now and the air date to make some sort of change. McGruder seems very much to be the type who’d not make changes because his decisions were unpopular if he believed in them in the first place. If Rosa Parks made sense in the cartoon 12 hours ago, she’d still make sense 3 weeks from now.
Then again, I’m always a little creeped out when I catch the Bebop episode with space shuttle Columbia saving the day. That’s more because of the tragic circumstances surrounding Columbia, but just like how I’m momentarily taken out of the dramatic save*, McGruder risks people missing the point while watching the show, and not doing it in a way he intended.
I’m not sure what to make of it; I don’t know exact what to do. I’m sure McGruder won’t budge, there’s going to be pressure on him and Adult Swim to make him budge (greater than there would’ve been just on the content of the show alone), and I don’t know how it’s going to turn out. It could turn into something the news networks latch onto and spiral out of control, or it could just be the sort of controversies which swirl in the mind of someone who’s tired but can’t sleep at 1:30 am.
* – they get me back every time with “Blue Sox fans never leave the game early!” I know, but it works.