Atlanta’ shows off the multi-talented Donald Glover

By Ivan Mateo

Donald Glover emerged to display his talents during his early days as a member of the Derrick Comedy troupe. The group made random, funny YouTube videos and an equally random and funny short movie, “Mystery Team.”

Glover has continued to showcase his multifaceted talents throughout his young career as a writer, actor and rapper. He wrote for the show “30 Rock,” starring Tina Fey and Alec Baldwin. In addition, he acted for sitcoms such as the hilarious, fan favorite, “Community,” as Troy Barnes, a goofy, overly dramatic but cool former jock.

Glover also demonstrates his musical ability as a rap artist under his pseudonym, “Childish Gambino,” where he has lyrics ranging from heartbreak to cartoon characters from “Dragon Ball Z” and “Rugrats”.

Glover’s stardom continues to grow brighter and rise higher, so it was only a matter of time before he received his own television show.

Audiences knew Glover could rap, write and make us laugh, but “Atlanta” mixes all these characteristics together, showcasing to the world just what Glover can do. “Atlanta” lets Glover loose, because this is his vision and he is sharing it with the world.

The premise of “Atlanta” follows two cousins trying to make a name for themselves in Atlanta, Georgia: one as a rapper, the other as his manager.

Glover plays Earnest “Earn” Marks, a quick-witted young man working a dead-end job to provide for his daughter and girlfriend, Vanessa “Van” Keeper (Zazie Beets). When Earn sees the opportunity that his cousin’s success might bring him and his family, he jumps at the chance.

Earn’s cousin, Alfred “Paper Boi” Miles (Brian Tyree Henry) could possibly be a drug dealer, but proves to also be a musical talent when he releases a rap mixtape that quickly becomes an underground hit in the local community. Earn sees the opportunity for a better life for his daughter, so he talks to his cousin to help manage his possibly burgeoning rap career.

Keith Stanfield plays Darius, Paper Boi’s right-hand man and planner for the future. The chemistry between the threesome of Earn, Paper Boi and Darius is undeniable, especially when they have their little interactions while simply hanging out.

“Atlanta” explores the life of having a child, having a job you probably hate and trying to make a better life for oneself, while also looking at the interconnecting relationships we have with everyday people.

“Atlanta” showcases itself in a very real, down to earth manner, but also presents itself in a creative, almost surreal way.

One episode might solely focus on comedic timing and laughter, while another episode hits you in the face about the gravity of race, while another episode the main characters barely make an appearance.

Glover and FX are trying something refreshingly different. More often than not, television today is formulaic and by the books.”Atlanta” seamlessly blends together the real and the magic of what makes good television, albeit in a weird way at times.

The show is quite easy to dive into because of the less than 30 minute run time. “Atlanta” will seem strange at first, but audiences will enjoy it quickly because of the comedy and wit.

Glover’s musical prowess and appreciation also fully displays itself in the show.

With any television show, a commitment to viewing two to three episodes to give the series a fair try is recommended, but “Atlanta” proves to be an easy show to love with the various topics each episode tackles combined with comedic timing and excellent writing.

In addition to his existing successes, Glover was just named to star as Lando Calrissian in the untitled Han Solo film, thus audiences should get used to hearing his name. His star will only continue to rise, along with the other actors starring in “Atlanta.”

“Atlanta” airs on the FX Network on Tuesdays at 10 p.m.

Atlanta television show poster

Courtesy of 20th TELEVISION

Atlanta television show poster

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