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TV Series Review

They say you can't go home again.

That's not literally true, of course. You can go home again, unless your home's been torn down and replaced by a 7-Eleven, or you're legally barred from entering your country of origin, or you come from Atlantis or something. It's just that home—the intangible feeling of home—might've up and left before you returned.

That's the case with Tray, a petty drug dealer who spent the last 15 years in the Big House.

Back in his day, Tray's neighborhood was a vibrant, gritty, crime-ridden urban paradise for a man like him. Everything was conveniently located within a four-block radius: He could deal drugs on the corner, crack wise with pals on the sidewalk, then walk across the street and watch the first season of American Idol with his boo, Shay. What more could a guy want?

Well, maybe an actual, legal job. Police expressed significant dissatisfaction with his current one.

You Wanna Buy Some Hummus?

But live and learn, right? Fifteen years later, Tray's ready to do right by society. Show the young, wayward punks in his old neighborhood a better way of doing things. Tell Shay (who, strangely, hasn't visited him in the slammer even once) that she did the right thing by waiting for him all those years.

But … wait. What are all these white people doing in his 'hood? What's with all the smoothie shops? Is it a legal requirement to carry a selfie stick now?

Sure, American Idol's back, so that's nice. But it seems Tray's old haunts have all been gentrified, sporting more hipsters, health goths and carefree Millennials per square foot than a Trader Joe's parking lot.

And Shay … seems like she's gentrified herself, too. She's now with a pasty Caucasian named Josh, who's apparently helping to raise Shay's twins. Twins who just happen to be … 15 years old.

Yep, you can go home again, but there's no guarantee that the home you knew will be there when you arrive.

"I feel like Rip Van Winkle," Tray says, "and I don't even know who that is!"

Dirty Rock

TBS's The Last O.G. (the two letters stand for the hip-hop slang phrase "Original Gangster") is the latest vehicle for comedian Tracy Morgan—his highest profile effort since he was nearly killed in a car crash in 2014.

But as talented as Morgan is, he's never exactly been a family-friendly sort of comic, and The Last O.G. might be one of the last things you'd want to flip on with kids in the room.

The show is littered with profanity (The basic cable version may censor the worst of it, but both f- and s-words were unbleeped in the streaming version of the show I watched). Tray and his cohorts mine sex acts and inclinations for a host of jokes, making it a veritable minefield of problematic content. And while most sitcoms tend to go easy on violence, The Last O.G. can have some jarring moments of slapstick mayhem—all played for laughs, of course, but enough to make you suck in your breath before you exhale a giggle.

But even laughter seems hard to come by on The Last O.G. It suffered a difficult birth: Its original cable home, FX, changed its mind while the show was still in development. The pilot was completely rewritten before it found a soft landing spot on TBS, and showrunner John Carcieri bolted after filming wrapped on Season 1. Have all those changes helped? Well, secular critics have been mixed thus far, despite the show's well-regarded cast.

You can't go home, they say. But if The Last O.G. manages to find a home on TBS over the long term, you'd be wise not to visit, either.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements

Conclusion

Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles

Profanity/Violence

Kissing/Sex/Homosexuality

Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews

June 4, 2019: "Fight the Power"
April 9, 2019: “Git Up Git Out & Git Something”
The Last O.G.: Mar. 31, 2018 "Pilot"

Credits

Rating

Readability Age Range

Genre

Comedy

Author

Cast

Tracy Morgan as Tray; Tiffany Haddish as Shay; Allen Maldonado as Bobby; Cedric the Entertainer as Mullins; Ryan Gaul as Josh; Taylor Mosby as Amira; Dante Hoagland as Shazad; Joel Marsh Garland as Big Country; Gino Vento as Gustavo; Daniel J. Watts as Felony; Derek Gaines as Jaybird; Cedric the Entertainer as Mullins; Natalie Carter as Ruth

Director

Distributor

Network

TBS

Performance

Record Label

Platform

Publisher

Released

On Video

Year Published

Awards

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