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Boondocks Reboot - What We Know So Far

From 2005 to 2014, "The Boondocks" animated television show offered smart, funny, topical social savvy, and plenty of kung fu-style action over 55 episodes and four seasons. In fact, ShackNews called it "one of the greatest American animes ever made" (although not all critics on Rotten Tomatoes loved the show). Now, the series based on a comic strip from creator Aaron McGruder is getting a reboot. There have been numerous delays getting this new project off the ground, making its release date something of a moving target, but fans are now hoping the launch of the new cartoon series is coming soon.

The satirical show, which has never shied away from controversy, follows the Freeman family — Riley, Huey, and Robert Jebediah (aka "Granddad") — residing in a white suburban neighborhood. Back in the day, the series was almost prophetic in the way it predicted events like, oh, a pandemic in "The Fried Chicken Flu." This time around, "The Boondocks" promises to bring its unrelenting, in-your-face brand of political commentary and Black cultural criticism into the current political atmosphere, making it a bold and welcome addition to today's TV landscape. Here's what we know about the reboot of "The Boondocks" at this time.

When is the release date of The Boondocks reboot?

It's been a couple of years since Sony Pictures Animation announced it was bringing "The Boondocks" back, and a year since HBO Max listed it as part of the streaming service's upcoming slate. The COVID-19 pandemic apparently delayed the return of the show, although it's uncertain if the delays come from production issues or schedule reshufflings.

Initially, "The Boondocks" was meant to return in fall 2020 with two 12-episode seasons on HBO Max, plus a 50-minute special to launch the first season. Then, in January, TVLine wrote that it looked like the series would return later in 2021 — a rather large and vague launch window. However, fans who check out the bio section of "The Boondocks"' official Instagram page can see that the reboot is now coming in 2022.

Hopefully, that's a more solid date than viewers have gotten in the past, and "The Boondocks" is indeed on its way back to television screens next year.

Who is in the cast of The Boondocks reboot?

The good news is that McGruder will be back running the series. He had sat out the fourth and final season of the original "The Boondocks" TV show, making a statement over Facebook (via Shadow and Act) that was completely unclear about why he was leaving. "The Boondocks pretty much represents my life's work to this point," he wrote. "Huey, Riley, and Granddad are not just property to me. They are my fictional blood relatives. Nothing is more painful than to leave them behind. To quote a great white man, 'Hollywood is a business'. And to quote another great white man, 'Don't hold grudges.'" IGN reported that the split came over production scheduling issues.

As this new series is a reimagining, you can probably expect a brand-new cast. Regina King played both Riley and Huey in the original series, while John Witherspoon voiced Granddad and Gary Anthony Williams played Uncle Ruckus. It was actually Witherspoon who spilled the news about the return of "The Boondocks" in an appearance on "The Joe Rogan Experience" in May 2019, which made people wonder if he might be involved with the new series. However, he died later that year, so it's sadly impossible for him to reprise his role.

What is the plot of The Boondocks reboot?

The plot of the original "The Boondocks" had Riley, Huey, and Granddad settling into the suburb of Woodcrest when Granddad becomes the boys' legal guardian. There, they fight the rules instituted by Uncle Ruckus and his neo-fascist community government. In this re-imagining, the anime- and manga-inspired look of the series gets an update but the story seems to remain the same — Granddad and kids move to a suburb in Maryland and try to survive under Uncle Ruckus' bizarre rule. Basically, you can imagine a similar narrative but updated with the kind of current events that the original series foreshadowed. 

"There's a unique opportunity to revisit the world of 'The Boondocks' and do it over again for today," McGruder told Deadline in 2019. "It's crazy how different times we live in are now — both politically and culturally — more than a decade past the original series and two decades past the original newspaper comic. There's a lot to say and it should be fun."

"The Boondocks" is currently available in its entirety on HBO Max if you want to watch the original series before the reboot hits.