Banned ‘Boondocks’ bashes BET
There’s nothing like banning something to ensure it gets seen everywhere fast in viral form.
“The Boondocks” is the latest example, with two completed episodes of Aaron McGruder’s late-night animated satire fated not to be seen during the show’s current season in Cartoon Network’s adult swim block ("Boondocks" airs Monday nights at 11:30 and midnight).
BET cable executives take the brunt of it in unaired clips now making the rounds on YouTube and other streaming sites. Strangely enough, one of the most mocked folks, BET’s “super-duper smart Harvard-educated president of entertainment” Reginald Hudlin, is also credited as an executive producer of “Boondocks,” a result of his helping get the original pilot made for Fox before the Cartoon pickup. Hudlin’s cartoon parody self is mostly concerned with making sure BET is the place for black viewers to see every “[crummy] black version of an MTV reality show” presented as simply as possible for "the monosyllabic demographic."
BET chief executive Debra Lee gets the worst savaging, as a Dr. Evil character named Debra Lee-vil, dedicated to trying to “accomplish what hundreds of years of slavery, Jim Crow and malt liquor couldn’t — the destruction of black people!” — while “suckin’ up [N-word people’s] money,” of course.
McGruder’s show has frequently courted controversy with touchy racial epithets and would-be Martin Luther King Jr. scenarios since its 2005 debut. But directly attacking another cable network in personal terms? Apparently a no-no, which seems to have shortened the second “Boondocks” season from a planned 15 episodes to 13.
But the BET trashing is nothing new or surprising for the 33-year-old McGruder, who’s always had it in for what he sees as the channel’s sleazy racial stereotypes, as widely demonstrated in his Boondocks newspaper comic strip.
Of course Advertising Age speculates the episodes’ ban might feed into another nifty viral feat — a DVD marketing campaign — when it comes to the future release of the second-season “Boondocks” set.
Here is the full clip of the BANNED episode that BET doesn’t want you to see.