It has taken time to reach our screens (the last episode premiered in the United States in November), but we already have season 4 (and final) of ‘Atlanta’ on Disney+. the great comedy of Donald Glover returns with his surrealism to say goodbye. And she does it big.
having the season 3 so unusually recent (barely six months, compared to the four-year hiatus) it is curious how the already notable contrast between the installments of this second half of the series grows.
I mean, if the batch that we saw last July (in Spain, I mean) led to the quartet incarnated by Glover, Brian Tyree Henry, Lakeith Stanfield and Zazie Beetz for Europe while we practically interspersed “anthology” episodes without them in between, this season 4 is more… “classic” in this sense.
More “classic” than unconventional
“Classic” but within the universe of the series that simply means that we have our protagonists hanging around Atlanta again trying to get on with their lives, undoing wrongs and so on. Because, of course, they have not lowered for a single moment, hallmarks from the series. She is just as surreal and determined to humorously deal with issues of the black experience in America as she was from the start.
I would even go so far as to say that the season opener, with Darius trying to return an air fryer, It is one of the funniest momentss of the entire series (and the biggest laugh I’ve released this 2023 to date). However, although I have enjoyed it, it is true that the peculiarities of the series play against it a bit.
It is not easy to enter ‘Atlanta’ and, in fact, it was difficult for me. But once you get inside, its eclecticism and experimentalism is quite rewarding. The pity is that this causes, in a certain way, the feeling that the characters have not had a real arc throughout the four seasons. Yes, evolution is seen (the first episode goes a lot about it), but also strange decisions and aspirations on the part of the quartet.
Actually this is not at all important, because this comedy has never gone from what we say in the synopsis: the careers of Paper Boi, Earn and company. they have always been in the background and, in fact, the best episodes are the “stand alone”, the anthology ones in which they are not (or are only slightly) present.
Although I believe that they have not lowered the bar in their proposal, they have not managed to surpass themselves either… and sometimes you can see that attempt to stay fresh that remains just that: attempt. Seen in episodes like ‘Born to Die’whose powerful premise doesn’t end up coming out quite right (at least D’Angelo’s part) or in a certain repetition of chords.
So well made that it doesn’t matter that they don’t finish
Although this can be somewhat frustrating, the point is that the series is so well done that these little squeaks remain almost anecdotal within the weird and peculiar character breathed by Donald, Stephen Glover and Hiro Murai (the main architects) in their otherwise marvelous and surreal exploration of the world around their characters.
We could even say that ‘Atlanta’ says goodbye to ‘Atlanta’ as always with an excellent finishing touch that closes what, without a doubt, is one of the most peculiar comedies of the 21st century so far. As funny as it is deep and even enigmatic, we are going to miss the foursome.