THE CLEVELAND SHOW “The Blue, The Gray and The Brown” Review

THE CLEVELAND SHOW The Blue, The Gray and The Brown Season 2 Episode 16 (4)

THE CLEVELAND SHOW “The Blue, The Gray and The Brown” Season 2, Episode 16 – Having been a fan of drive-in theaters myself, I could totally relate to Cleveland’s distressed rampage through the town after being told about the fate of the local drive-in on tonight’s episode of The Cleveland Show.

I probably wouldn’t go as far as Cleveland did to save the drive in – mostly because I couldn’t write a two minute song about small town life – but his efforts landed him on an elite Stoolbend historical preservation board which leads to him discovering the racist history in his beloved town. The preservation society is a bizarre group that is determined to save their racist roots although they don’t seem to think there’s anything wrong with having Cleveland help them in their mission. Cleveland doesn’t realize he’s being used of course until he hears their bigoted anthem while he’s chained to the statue of a slave owner.

Motivated by Donna’s encouragement, Cleveland decides to rewrite Stoolbend’s history and get revenge on the preservation society though the town’s Civil War reenactment. He rallies his friends together to shoot blanks at one another, “like the ones that killed Brandon Lee” and it seems everyone is in for the fight. I loved Lester’s reasoning for fighting for the South and not joining up with Cleveland though, going to Robert E. Lee elementary, middle and high school are quite the credentials to fight for the South in a civil war reenactment.

Once everyone was at the Civil War reenactment, I kept thinking of the episode of South Park, “The Red Badge of Gayness,” where Cartman is determined to change the course of reenactment history by bringing victory for the South. Both the episodes of The Cleveland Show and South Park also featured Civil War style letter writing and the main character trying to change history through a reenactment. Obviously Cleveland had significantly better intentions than Cartman did in his episode, but it was difficult to avoid drawing comparisons between the two shows.

I thought the scene with Cleveland and his friends running down to the library in costume and reading the historical account of the Battle of Stoolbend was pretty funny. Of course all the other actors at the reenactment are already aware of what is going to happen at the battle, but it’s funny watching them stick to the set rules of play fighting and die when they’re shot at even if it means they don’t stick to the script. My favorite death scene was when Tim was shot though – I loved that he took off his coat so he wouldn’t get his hair dirty when he laid down on the floor.

I was actually not expecting Lester to jump in at the last moment to save Cleveland from an imaginary bullet. I had totally forgotten that Lester was even there, but it was nice to see him come in the way he did. I also liked the follow up after the reenactment was won by Cleveland which showed everyone getting hammered and vandalizing the statue that Cleveland was used to save. The fact that they had to pay a fee to repair something that was going to be demolished just days before was a nice touch.

The story tied up pretty nicely in the end, although looking back, I probably would have liked it if the two musical segments of the episode were trimmed a bit since they seemed to go on just a little longer than necessary. I think the lack of a subplot actually worked really well since there was enough in the main story line to keep everything moving fluidly, but some of the comedy that comes from a random b-story was missing. Overall, this wasn’t a bad episode of The Cleveland Show, but it probably wasn’t one of my favorites either.