Supernatural horror meets racism in new HBO series
On August 16, HBO premiered the ten-episode American horror drama series “Lovecraft Country” developed by Misha Green and executive produced by Jordan Peele. The series is based on the novel of the same name written by Matt Ruff.
“Lovecraft Country” follows the story of Atticus Freeman (Jonathan Majors) as he joins up with his friend Letitia (Jurnee Smollett) and his Uncle George (Courtney Vance) to embark on a road trip across the 1950s Jim Crow America. The young Korean War vet Atticus’ journey is in search of his missing father. His father, Montrose Freeman (Michael Kenneth Williams), has gone missing in mysterious circumstances on his way to Arkham, Massachusetts. This journey begins a struggle to survive and overcome both the racist terrors of white America.
Being “Black in America”
Jordan Peele’s inspired project displays a series of connected stories that follow these characters around and through the very real dangers of being ‘Black in America’. Lovecraft-inspired monsters and white racists make sure there is almost no place in “the heartland” that is safe for a black person.
Jurnee Smollett says the parts that terrified her the most were the scenes in which her character, Letitia, had to face racist white police officers with shotguns in their arms and hate in their eyes. “The moments in which I was put in the back of a cop car or searched by an officer, I think about friends, I think about my siblings, I think about stories that I’ve heard,” Smollett said. “I don’t have to go very far to pull from the source — it’s right here. We see that the systemic racism that this nation is built upon has yet to be dismantled.”
Even though the story takes place in 1954, it debuted during a time of reckoning on systemic racism in America in the wake of the killing of George Floyd by police.
“Lovecraft Country” airs on HBO Sunday nights at 9 pm. Check out the official trailer below.