'Black-ish' Hamilton-inspired Season 4 premiere will celebrate Juneteenth, take shots at Columbus Day
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'Black-ish' Hamilton-inspired Season 4 premiere will celebrate Juneteenth, take shots at Columbus Day

ABC’s black-ish will debut its fourth season on a new day and time this fall, and it’ll continue to push the edge on social commentary.

The season four premiere, which will be inspired by the hit musical, Hamilton. “I’ve seen ‘Hamilton’ a ton of times. The thing that got me about it is the idea of a historically contextual piece that speaks to what an American story is. That’s what ‘black-ish’ is. It’s a contemporary piece that speaks to the texture of what America is,” Barris told the Los Angeles Times.

The episode will see Diane (Marsai Martin) and Jack (Miles Brown) in a school play about Columbus Day, and Dre (Anthony Anderson) will become outraged at how the holiday is portrayed. After this, Dre will enlist in real-life singer Aloe Blacc for a campaign done by his ad agency to highlight Juneteenth.

Barris said this was inspired by a conversation he had with his son.

“He was talking to me about Columbus and said, ‘Dad, you know Columbus never actually set foot in North America?’ I looked at him and said, ‘I think you’re mistaken, son.’ I thought he had just read the books wrong. But I started researching it, and I was blown away. Not only did Columbus not step foot in North America, he wasn’t the person who discovered the world wasn’t flat. His name wasn’t even really Christopher Columbus.”

He continued,  “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. 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.”

Like Hamilton, the show will employ a musical element.

Black-ish, Season 4 will debut Tuesday, October 3 and 9 p.m.

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