‘United Shades of America’ is an American documentary television series that airs on the CNN Network. The show first premiered on April 23, 2016. The series is presented by comedian and political provocateur W. Kamau Bell. It sees Bell traveling to far corners of America and plunging into various cultural controversies and racial issues. He also explores various communities and discusses problems like incarceration, racism, immigration problems, political freedom, and more.
‘United Shades of America’ has been critically lauded and won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Unstructured Reality Program, at the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards as well as the 70th Primetime Emmy Awards. It has seen a total of four seasons until now. Here’s everything we know about its next season.
United Shades of America Season 5 Release Date:
‘United Shades of America’ season 4 premiered on April 28, 2019, on CNN. It ended with its eighth episode on June 16, 2019. Given the popularity of the show, we were not surprised when the show was renewed for yet another edition. ‘United Shades of America’ season 5 will premiere on July 19, 2020.
United Shades of America Season 5 Host
‘United Shades of America’ is hosted by W. Kamau Bell, a sociopolitical comedian who has other shows with similar content. These include the criminally short-lived comedy series on FX and FXX titled ‘Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell’. He also has a standup comedy special on Netflix called ‘Private School Negro’, and is known for having directed the critically acclaimed documentary, ‘Cultureshock: Chris Rock’s Bring the Pain’. Apart from this, he has hosted three critically acclaimed podcasts ‘Kamau Right Now!’, ‘Denzel Washington is The Greatest Actor of All Time Period’, and ‘Politically Re-Active’. As is evident from Kamau’s previous and current works, his comedy has a very distinct political flavor and he brings exactly that to ‘United Shades of America’. He will make a comeback in season 5 as well.
What Can United Shades of America Season 5 be About?
‘United Shades of America’ follows W. Kamau Bell in his journey to understand the diverse cultures and problems that exist within the USA. Some of the instances include him traveling to the border between the U.S. and Mexico and meeting with people who live there. He asks them about what is it like or how they are surviving at the border. In another episode, he visits the Sikh community that lives in America. He tries to shed light on all misunderstandings and stereotypes about the community through his conversations with them as most Americans confuse them to be Muslims.
In another episode, Bell meets an African American community that is also known as Gullah or Geechee. This community is spread all over the coast of Georgia and South Carolina. The most unusual thing about them is that they have their own language, tradition as well as culture. This community is somewhat similar to the Creole-speaking people.
In yet another episode, he discusses how physically disabled people are seen as a burden and how badly they are treated by the government. He also explores ancient black universities and colleges to see if they are seen as an important part of the education system or not. It is Bell’s belief that to truly know America, one must cross over to the other side, into territories they might not be comfortable with. This is perhaps why his show’s name is a play on the very nation’s name, vis a vis, United States of America.
Bell uses humor as his weapon and gets into awkward situations that include a hate-mongering Ku Klux Klan session, attending a cross-burning, and odd likes. He loves to explore different parts of America and study colorful and diverse communities. Perhaps the message is that white conservatives should attempt to do the same, cross over to the other side and see how they live.
From an effort to understand rises compassion, instead of creating a notion of the ‘other’. Bell puts this across hilariously, as he often says highly ironic things with a deadpan expression, thus escaping the comprehensibility of the person he is interviewing. Some of the voiceovers of the show also display the comedian’s sharp wit that holds the political issues presented, in a manner that the audience cannot get enough of.
Hopefully, in the upcoming season, the show will grow even bolder as the political climate becomes more heated in America. It is shows like these and people like Bell who form a line of defense in mainstream media and preach a message of inclusivity, and basic human rights, something that the USA was built on and has tried to champion, at least within their own borders, from the time the nation was formed.
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