The Boondocks

Season 3 Episode 4

The Story of Jimmy Rebel

Aired Sunday 11:30 PM May 23, 2010 on Adult Swim

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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out of 10
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  • "The Boondocks" - the Freeman family = a whole lot of racism

    Oh boy, what a difficult episode to tackle...

    This episode was all about Ruckus and his infatuation with a racist-country-western singer named Jimmy Rebel.
    Jimmy becomes famous in the 60's when he debuts at the local redneck bar, "Sh*t Kickers", in the southern city of Spokenhoke and becomes a hit. fast-forward to the present: Ruckus is Jimmy Rebel's biggest fan and sends him a letter saying so - as well as a song about keeping black people out of NASCAR. Jimmy Rebel and his record label like it so much that Jimmy Rebel comes to Woodcrest to meet the infamous Uncle Ruckus. Jimmy Rebel is put off when he first meets Ruckus. He likes Ruckus' attitude towards African-Americans but is alarmed at the color of his skin. Ruckus manages to hold him there by telling him he's Uncle Ruckus' faithful man-servant, Toby and that the real Uncle Ruckus is a proud white man who is sick with "Nigerian Monkey-Pox."

    Ruckus tells Granddad he met "someone special" and doesn't know how how far a relationship can go based on lies. Granddad thinks Ruckus is talking about a woman and asks how big the lie is which leads to the funniest and mist quotable line of the whole episode-

    RUCKUS: "I'm supposed to be a white man. Without re-vitaligo."
    (Granddad busts out laughing)
    RUCKUS: "You know what Robert, f*ck you and everybody who lives in your household."
    GRANDDAD: "Okay whitey."

    Ruckus and Jimmy Rebel bond over the day, but when Jimmy Rebel says he either has to speak with Uncle Ruckus today or go back to Spokenhoke forever, Ruckus is forced to tell Granddad everything (Granddad busts out laughing again) and beg him to pretend to be Uncle Ruckus. Granddad keeps the charade going pretty well as Jimmy Rebel asks him thru his bedroom door if he wants to go to Spokenhoke "and record beautiful racist music together", but loses his temper when Jimmy Rebel slides autographed copies of all of his CDs under the door with the most racist titles conceivable.
    Ruckus is forced to tell Jimmy Rebel the truth, but Jimmy Rebel admits that deep down, he's always known and doesn't care. Jimmy Rebel and Uncle Ruckus then head to Spokenhoke to record an album. The record label is very alarmed at the potential backlash they could receive by letting Ruckus join the label. Jimmy Rebel ignores their concerns and decides to premiere their new material at "Sh*t Kickers." But the crowd doesn't react kindly to Uncle Ruckus and a bar fight breaks out with Ruckus and Jimmy Rebel narrowly escaping in a limo that looks like the General Lee. Believing racists only have a problem with African-Americans because of their attitude, Jimmy Rebel becomes disgusted when he realizes his fans only judge people by the color of their skin and not their integrity. Ruckus runs away crying claiming Jimmy Rebel isn't the racist he thought he was. Ruckus returns to Woodcrest, but Jimmy Rebel follows him. Ruckus admits he didn't mean what he said to Jimmy Rebel. Jimmy Rebel decides to retire from racist music ("Hell there's tons things to sing about other than black people: Friends, love, beer, good times, all kinds of sh*t!") The episode ends with them recording a song about sending illegal mexicans back to Mexico.

    Easily the weakest episode of "The Boondocks" made thus far. The Freemans barely appear at all and too much effort is made to make Granddad and Ruckus appear to be friends, which really doesn't vibe with the rest of the continuity very well at all. Plus when you take the Freemans out of the episode you get a lot of blatant racism that really confuses just what all the messages in the episode were supposed to mean. Jimmy Rebel himself is a brilliant idea for a character, realizing maybe he's not as racist as he thinks he is and despising his fans for their ignorance ("I've realized something Ruckus - most rednecks are f*cking stupid. And I mean REALLY f*cking stupid.") But Ruckus is not a very sympathetic character and the plot doesn't do much to sway the audience's sympathy over to his side. In fact, the episode kinda paints Ruckus in a really bad light and transforms him from loveable racist into your typical, stupid racist that doesn't deserve to be given a mouth to speak. Throw that in with almost nothing but racist jokes that are very funny if you're in the right mind set, but very excruciating if you're not - and this episode almost stands as a total failure by Boondocks standards. 8/10. My lowest score ever for "The Boondocks." A brave and controversial idea that failed in execution and tried to shoehorn the Freemans into a scenario theyu would usually have nothing to do with. Even as little as they appear in this episode, their appearance seems forced, much like "The Uncle Ruckus Reality Show." although that was a MUCH better Ruckus-centric episode. Here's hoping the rest of the season shines with the brilliance of "It's A Black President, Huey Freeman" and "The Red Ball" or at least is as decent as "B*tches To Rags." And here's hoping the Freeman family will be the main focus of the season - because it just doesn't feel like "The Boondocks" without 'em...