ABC will rebroadast landmark ‘black-ish’ episodes ‘to say enough is enough’
ABC will rebroadcast two groundbreaking episodes of “black-ish” tonight in observance of Blackout Tuesday, an initiative urging members of the entertainment industry and beyond to pause and reflect on how to better support the black community.
On Instagram, “black-ish” showrunner Kenya Barris announced Tuesday ABC will air reruns of “Hope,” a second-season episode addressing police brutality, and “Juneteenth,” the fourth-season premiere commemorating the end of slavery in the United States.
“It’s been more than 4 years since we made ‘Hope.’ An episode that was inspired by conversations I was having with my own children about the countless examples of systemic oppression happening around them,” Barris wrote in a statement.
“It’s been 1,562 days since we first shared that episode with the world, and it breaks my heart on so many levels that this episode feels just as timely as it did then and eerily prescient to what’s happening to black people in this country today.”
Barris’ announcement comes as the police killing of George Floyd has spurred protests across the country demanding justice for Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and other victims of racial violence.
“This is more than one night of television,” Barris continued. “This is about coming together as a country and as a humankind to say enough is enough. Black rights are human rights, and this continued injustice impacts all of us.
“So while we hope these episodes can bring your families together in watching and learning, the real hope is that it inspires you to join us in demanding liberty and justice for all — once and for all.”
When “Hope” debuted in February 2016, Times culture columnist Mary McNamara praised Barris for “deftly using the terrific comedic chemistry of its cast and writers to address issues of race and culture in a way never seen before on any screen.”
ABC’s “black-ish,” the acclaimed family comedy about an upper-middle class African-American family living in a predominantly white neighborhood, has taken on more than its share of provocative topics, including a debate over the “N-word,” police brutality and President Trump.
In 2017, Barris told Times TV reporter Greg Braxton that “Juneteenth” was influenced by a discussion the writer-producer had with his son about Christopher Columbus and the ways in which history is rewritten.
“All these things we had been told in a false way. Why is it that we have a holiday for this guy? I started thinking about Juneteenth, being an American and acknowledging that slavery happened,” Barris said at the time.
“There’s never been one person prosecuted for slavery in the history of the country. So we never got a reset button. It was like, ‘OK, it’s over.’ So morally, we understand that slavery was wrong as a country, but there was no criminality put to it.”
“Hope” airs tonight at 8 p.m. Eastern and Pacific on ABC, followed immediately by “Juneteenth” at 8:30 p.m.
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