There have been plenty of tributes to Prince since he died more than two years ago, but few are as much fun, or as fanatical, as Tuesday’s episode of “Black-ish.”
The celebration kicks off when the show’s twin tweeners walk in on the rest of the family goofing around to a recording of “Let’s Go Crazy” while drying the dishes.
“Who was that lady singing?” says Jack (Miles Brown), making it painfully clear that his musical education is limited to what debuted on Spotify right after breakfast.
The grown-ups are mortified.
“That’s worse than Kanye saying slavery was a choice,” says grandma Ruby (Jenifer Lewis).
The Johnson family quickly assembles in the living room for an emergency meeting — and an excuse to reminisce about how Prince affected their lives.
Pops (Laurence Fishburne) recalls how he quit a dead-end job in a factory after Prince accused his record label of treating him like a slave. Ruby credits “When Doves Cry” as an inspiration for getting her kids out of Compton.
Oldest daughter Zoey (Minneapolis native Yara Shahidi, whose father used to work as a Paisley Park photographer) claims “Sign o’ the Times” turned her on to social activism. Parents Andre and Rainbow (Anthony Anderson and Tracee Ellis Ross) insist that their first date would have ended in disaster if “Erotic City” hadn’t bolstered their confidence.
The trip down memory lane is illustrated by re-creations of classic videos — hits (“Purple Rain”) and lesser-known gems (“7”) — as the more-than-game cast gives the costume department a workout. It’s the funkiest post-Halloween party of the season.
“Black-ish” has tackled more ambitious subjects during its five-year run, but it’s hard to think of a time the actors were ever this giddy.
You will be, too.