Here we go. In a move that I personally saw coming from the get, the religious right has slammed its clumsy fists down upon the prospect of Christ’s return…as a black man…in a satire…penned by Aaron McGruder. Son, there are so many things wrong with that last statement, it hardly warrants a deconstruction. McGruder’s Black Jesus has been a long time coming, and for Boondocks loyalists around the world (who watched their hopes for the final season crumble before their eyes in the very first moments of the season’s opener) this is some serious shit. Not ’cause McGruder’s hand is infallible, but because his voice and cultural commentary are the most cutting, most abrasive–and most necessary to a thriving progressive community. Apparently the bible belt, peppered as it may be with closet liberals, still has a tough time swallowing the whole biting satire thing.
The first of what we can assume will be countless complaints, petitions and shortsighted attempts to halt the show’s premiere has surfaced. Where else, but Shreveport, Louisiana? A Christian group has been protesting the show’s spin on the devout figure, claiming it “mocks and degrades who they know their savior to be” and that “Our Jesus is not an alcoholic. Our Jesus is not riotous and unruly.”
The only problem with that is that if they knew their Jesus as well as they claim, they’d know that he was, of course, all of these things, as reported on CNN, of all places.
In the book of Matthew we find Christ condemned for “drinking with publicans and sinners,” later accused of being “a drunken and a glutton, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.” The man was knocking back four glasses of wine with dinner for Christ’s sake (see what I did there?) As far as his riotous nature is concerned, I believe the Romans would find the peaceful characterization of Christ’s nature a bit off-base. I suppose the point is that McGruder’s depiction of this new Compton-based Jesus might be a more accurate portrayal than it seems and if the mere sight of the trailer (with its cognac sippin’, blunt burnin’ caricature of Christ) is taken as if it was presenting an infallible truth (as these Black Jesus freaks tend to take it) instead of the blatant attempt at analyzing the God-fearing mentality of poor folks and creating a farce out of that perception, then maybe y’all should just change the channel. Avert your eyes, as some would say.
Black Jesus lands on the little screen next Friday on Adult Swim, whether you’re into it or not. So buck up, or flip the clicker. Black Jesus cometh. Peep the hilarious trailer below.