By Bageot Dia
From out of the cotton fields and the big house ran a grief-stricken yet determined set of seven slaves, who were like needles in the haystack their master called society. They existed but were not visible, until they grabbed their destiny.
While escaping the brutality of slavery, their group now short a few martyrs asked: What is freedom? How can one achieve purpose in the face of social leprosy? More specifically, what can one do when society employs every measure of subjugation for the sole purpose of dehumanizing you?
These questions — those of existential importance — are asked and answered by WGN America’s UNDERGROUND, which returns for a second season on March 8th.
Headed by Misha Green and Joe Pokaski, UNDERGROUND exhibits the Black American as he once was, beaten down and stricken of humanity in the eyes of the Western world, but with unending courage and tenacity to survive.
UNDERGROUND explores the 19th Century racial tension as the escapades of freedom fighters, slaves, abolitionists, and bounty hunters play out on screen.
The skillful artifice of the series is potent. It speaks with people, with tragedy, with melancholic fervor that booms across the mind like a roaring lion. It’s a fantastic fictionalization of history, because the content is composed with such fluidity, that the ethos of slavery continues to reverberate, even in the 21st century.
The series’ first season was met with critical acclaim, thanks to compelling writing and top-notch acting from Jurnee Smolett-Bell, Aldis Hodge, Jessica De Gouw, Alano Miller, Christopher Meloni, and Amirah Vann. Relishing in numerous NAACP Image Awards, and landing a “fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes, it wasn’t hard to justify a season 2. Are you surprised?
The story of the Black man in America is not often a happy one. Yet people continue to deny that he was once considered subhuman. Some choose to believe this because it is less painful than the truth and doesn’t acknowledge the debt American society owes to the Black man and woman. But the truth pervades everything. For as long as there exist people, there will exist those who thrill on silencing the hero. UNDERGROUND refuses to let slavery die a happy death. Rather, it will continue to seek and depict the truth.
Season 2 of UNDERGROUND lands in March 8th at 10 p.m. on WGN America.
Keep clicking for images from UNDERGROUND season 2 …
[Image: WGN America]