Black-ish wasn’t afraid to address sensitive cultural issues during its first year, with episodes like “Crime and Punishment” exploring the notion of whooping children as a means of discipline and “Martin Luther Skiing Day,” which addressed people viewing Martin Luther King Day as a vacation. It’s ability to paint a unique tableau of a modern Black family while remaining accessible is the biggest strength of the series and Barris’ best quality as a writer.
“I’m psyched to be able to call ABC Studios, the place that made my dreams [and my show] come true, my home for the next few years, and hopefully many more,” said Barris. “I can’t wait for [ABC Entertainment Group president Paul Lee] to bring me my diamond-encrusted ABC medallion’d gold chain so I can proudly wear it to the Emmys… or one the 17 Straight out of Compton screenings I plan on attending.”
Barris seems to already have an idea of his first new project for ABC, working on a potential new series based on the marriage of singer John Legend and model Chrissy Teigen called, Ordinary People. In an interview with Buzzfeed.com Barris stated, “It’s inspired by them — they’re both super creative and super effusive and I’m just fans of them and everything they stand for. I’m really excited about it.”
Barris’ comedic voice is making him the go-to guy for reboots on a couple of Black-centered properties. He’s attached to write Sony’s film adaptation of Good Times and he’s also writing the script for a reboot ofShaft.
Barris has shown the unique talent of navigating through the gridlocked and dangerous intersection of race and stereotypes using articulate and honest humor as his GPS. It takes a certain type of boldness and belief to pull this off without crashing but Barris keeps rolling, breaking no sweat as one of the hardest workers and writers in show business.