Give Donald Glover an Award Right Now for Playing Mr. Chocolate on the Latest Episode of Atlanta

The first season of Atlanta saw acclaim and awards heaped on Donald Glover and company and rightfully so. The shape-shifting comedy series has broken so much new ground with form, narrative, tone, etc. on top of being one of the sharpest satires ever, when it comes to the black experience. It’s almost a modern day version of Ralph Ellison’s long celebrated Invisible Man, but done through the lens of a stealthily absurd comedy series.

Now, in its fourth and final season, Glover is still showing he has plenty more up his sleeve to surprise us all. This latest episode “Work Ethic!” might be one of the series’ very best moments as Donald dons a fat suit, a robe, and a coffee mug of grits to play Mr. Chocolate, a thinly veiled dig at the entertainment titan that is Tyler Perry.

Perry’s success has proven controversial as much of his work wheels and deals in broad stereotypes of both black and white people, but is often free from criticism due to his commitment to employing so many black creatives and laborers on all of his productions based in Atlanta. From top to bottom, every bit of the Tyler Perry subgenre (including the Madea franchise and every other property that begins its title with “Tyler Perry’s”) is searingly dissected and sent up in this episode in “Chocolateland” (a parody of real life Tyler Perry Studios). Glover shines a floodlight on the notion that the studio’s efforts are so much “for the culture” that provide enough cache to make up for its exploitative content and practices.

Leave it to Donald Glover to play a character that seems half Tyler Perry, half The Architect from The Matrix Trilogy in such damningly hysterical piercing of the mythos propping up Perry. Without question, it is and will be one of the funniest performances on a screen of any size this year. As said above, give it awards ASAP.

Enjoy a bit of that performance here, then watch the whole episode on Hulu now.