Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Here's Why Atlanta's Season 3 Premiere Upset Some Fans

After four long years of waiting, "Atlanta" fans finally got some new episodes this week with the much-anticipated premiere of Season 3 on FX. But while most expected to see creator and star Donald Glover, along with Brian Tyree Henry, Lakeith Stanfield, and Zazie Beetz, in the opening episode, that was surprisingly not the case. Instead, Episode 1 of the new season focused on a new, never-before-seen "Atlanta" character: a Black boy named Loquareeous (Christopher Farrar) who finds himself adopted by two white foster moms after being removed from his parent's home. 

Loquareeous' foster moms, who have three other Black foster children, are neglectful and exploitative. While living with the women, things grow increasingly worse for Loquareeous and the other kids, and the abuse is eventually discovered. This prompts the couple to try and carry out a murder-suicide mission by launching their van into a river with the children inside. However, Loquareeous — whom they've renamed Larry — is able to escape just seconds earlier by jumping out the back. 

The episode and story itself may seem like something conjured up by the mind of a Hollywood screenwriter, but in fact, it was heavily inspired by true events. And it's because of this that some "Atlanta" fans were upset and extremely disturbed by the Season 3 premiere.

If you or someone you know may be the victim of child abuse, please contact the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453) or contact their live chat services.

The real-life tragedy that inspired the premiere of Atlanta Season 3

The Season 3 premiere of Atlanta appears to have been directly inspired by the tragic story of the Hart family. On March 26, 2018, Jennifer and Sarah Hart, along with their six foster children, were killed when their car went off a cliff in California. Authorities later determined that the fatal crash was most likely caused on purpose (via CNN). 

Upon first watching the "Atlanta" Season 3 premiere, it seems clear that the narrative draws heavily from the Hart family tragedy, with the only difference being Loquareeous' ability to escape before suffering the same fate as the others. In real life, the body of 15-year-old Devonte Hart — whom the Loquareeous character is speculated to have been based on (via Oregon Live) — was never found. However, a judge wound up signing a death certificate in 2019 (via People Magazine). Knowing the truth behind Episode 1 of "Atlanta" Season 3 has had many fans feeling extremely sad and upset after watching it.

"I just REALLY REALLY HATE the story of the Hart Family Murders, so this #Atlanta is making me very anxious," wrote one viewer on Twitter. "It's extremely uncomfortable to watch for me," they added. Another user said, "It was hard to sleep after watching that s**t tbh." Meanwhile, @BigBadTay tweeted, "Atlanta got my heart hurting right now. The hart family case was so sad." And @5Deuce4Tre7 said, "Even w/ the good twist ending, was hard to watch."