First Impressions: ‘Atlanta’

Atlanta, FX

Paperboy is a great rapper name.

Going into Atlanta, I was really excited. Besides the amazing reviews, the premise looked interesting, and I like Donald Glover.

After just watching the first two episodes, Atlanta is pretty good. Donald Glover makes for a captivating lead and is backed up by a strong supporting cast. Paperboy being one of my favorites. The environments feel pretty authentic and puts you into a world that’s clearly been lived in, even though the audience is just being introduced to that world.¬†The 1st episode set the stage well for a show with clearly a lot of potential.

Reincorporation is also used to great effect in the pilot. If not done well, reincorporation can be pretty embarrassing. The filmmakers either come off nowhere near as clever as they think they are, or the reincorporation is just terribly obvious about what it’s alluding to. Thankfully, it’s done well here. When the moment you were introduced to earlier comes, that tension is really felt. The handling of the aftermath of that moment was also really smart. There was a certain way I thought they’d handle things, which would’ve been really cliche. Thankfully, they didn’t go that route.

This won’t really be a problem for anyone who watches the show without commercial breaks, but they should’ve had the last segment connect to the previous part of the first episode. The way they actually cut the scene for commercials made that segment come off a little awkward, even though it was a perfect ending. This is probably just coming off as nitpicking, but it was off-putting.

The 2nd episode is where things sorta slip. It’s not bad, but that episode really feels like it could’ve been cut in with the 3rd episode. The episode did a great job of really putting the audience into Earn’s mindset of really being in that situation but just felt dragged out. That seems, however, to just be just be a stepping stone as the rest of season looks to have more of the momentum that the first episode had.

Overall, I really liked Atlanta. Despite its problems, the characters are intriguing, and I’m eager to see how their journeys play out. Earn trying to order a kid’s meal in the promo for episode 3 already gets me excited.

Atlanta airs Tuesdays at 10 p.m. on FX.

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