The fourth season premiere of ABC's black-ish will celebrate Juneteeth, the holiday devoted to the abolishment of slavery in the United States. And it should be a treat for fans of Hamilton.
According to the Los Angeles Times, creator Kenya Barris was inspired by both Hamilton and common misconceptions about Christopher Columbus while writing the episode. "I've seen Hamilton a ton of times," he told the paper. "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 added that he can thank his son for the episode's storyline — which will see Dre (Anthony Anderson) hiring Aloe Blacc to create a Juneteenth song after seeing his twins perform in a Columbus Day school play — because he pointed out the historical inaccuracies of Columbus' story.
"He was talking to me about Columbus and said, 'Dad, you know Columbus never actually set foot in North America?' ... 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," Barris told the Times.
"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 ... The idea of honoring the end of slavery gives us something that brings us together as a country."
black-ish will return to ABC for its fourth season on Tuesday, October 3rd at 9/8c.