The Season 3 debut, after four years, goes to new areas with a familiar confidence.
Season 2 of FX’s drama series came to an end in 2018. Even for a series that has always operated with its own sense of time, this was a long break.
Since then, there has been a pandemic, an attack on the Capitol, and the racial reckoning following George Floyd’s murder, all of which repeated a topic of this wonderfully rendered show: what life is like for Black Americans like the show’s characters, whose fate can shift in an instant.
Earn Marks, an artist management, and his rapper cousin, Alfred “Paper Boi” Miles, cope with diverse situations while navigating the hip-hop scene in the titular city in ‘Atlanta,’ a comedy-drama series produced by Donald Glover (‘Community’).
The series returns after a long absence with its third season, which brings our favourite characters outside of Atlanta and to Europe. The season 3 opening, however, takes a detour rather than reconciling us with characters like Earn, Alfred, Darius, and Van.
It follows Loquareeous, a troubled young boy who has a series of increasingly disturbing personal experiences. The abrupt shift in narrative dynamics and the unexpected focus on Loquareeous will undoubtedly leave viewers with unanswered doubts about the young boy’s story’s conclusion.
In that case, here’s everything you need to know about the season 3 episode 1 premiere of ‘Atlanta‘!
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD!
Must Read: ‘Atlanta’ Season 2 Recap and Ending Explained
Recap of Atlanta Season 3 Episode 1
‘Three Slaps,’ the first episode of Season 3, opens on a boat in the middle of a lake. A white guy and a black man discuss how a person’s race or colour influences their viewpoint. The picture then turns to a classroom, hinting that the dialogue was the dream of Loquareeous, a middle-school student.
The administrator calls Loquareeous’ parents after he disrupts the class with his prolonged celebration of the approaching field trip.
Loquareeous’ mother, on the other hand, is not pleased with the call. Loquareeous is disciplined by her, and his grandfather slaps him three times. The issue is noticed by Loquareeous’ sympathetic white guidance counsellor, who labels it as abuse.
She dials the number for Social Services, who arrive at Loquareeous’ home. Loquareeous’ mother is furious with him, and despite the child’s protests, he is placed in foster care. Loquareeous is placed with Amber and Gayle, a couple who are foster parents to three other African-American children.
Loquareeous tries to acclimatise to his new circumstances, but his new moms’ behaviour quickly turns him off. As Amber and Gayle’s self-aware and knowledgeable deeds of caring toward their children begin to reeks of cruelty, the situation grows increasingly frightening. Loquareeous tries but fails to flee his foster home.
A black social worker shows up at the family’s door to see how the kids are doing. Gayle, on the other hand, takes charge of the matter, and the social worker is never seen again. The family leaves the next morning for a road trip to the Grand Canyon, but Loquareeous is worried that something bad may happen.
Was Earn Dreaming About Loquareeous in Atlanta Season 3 Episode 1?
Amber and Gayle feel the pressure of raising the four children in the last seconds of the episode. Amber crashes her car off a precipice and into a neighbouring lake on the way to the Grand Canyon.
Loquareeous, on the other hand, manages to get out of the car just in time and saves himself. Loquareeous returns home, much to the delight of his mother. Loquareeous watches the news as the other orphans are rescued by social services. Loquareeous, on the other hand, tunes out the news and tunes in to cartoons.
The episode emphasises the differences between a white and a black household’s upbringing. Loquareeous’ mother is severe, yet she loves her son and wants the best for him. She sees herself as preparing her son for the more difficult life fights that come with being an African-American in the United States.
Amber and Gayle, on the other hand, are more concerned with how their acts as parents will be seen by society than with the welfare of their children. Loquareeous is ultimately saved from certain doom thanks to his mother’s tough love upbringing.
The episode examines how racial minorities see the behaviours of racial dominant groups and remarks on how privilege influences a person’s lifestyle regardless of colour or race through Loquareeous’ struggle.
Loquareeous stares at the camera in the final minutes, implying that his entire event may have been a dream similar to the one he had in class. The scene then cuts to Earn, who wakes up in a hotel room, further complicating the situation.
Earn was dreaming about Loquareeous and his troubles the entire time, according to the finale. The dream can be interpreted as a projection of Earn’s insecurities and concerns as a black guy.
Furthermore, if Loquareeous’ experiences are a dream, the narrative may deal with a complex and sensitive storey of racism, childhood abuse, motherhood, and brutality without sounding heavy-handed or insulting. Loquareeous is, in the end, a figment of Earn’s imagination, born of his insecurities and fears about the society in which he lives.
As a result, it offers a distinct perspective on Earn’s interactions with those who are significantly more fortunate than him.
— AtlantaFX (@AtlantaFX) March 24, 2022
Watch Atlanta Season 3 Episode 1 ‘Three Slaps’ on FX Networks only.