When it bowed back in 2018, the HBO show Random Acts of Flyness immediately stood out as visionary, unique television — a kind of sketch show that was described by its creator, Terence Nance, as a “fluid, mind-melting stream-of-conscious response to the contemporary American mediascape.” Among its subjects was race in Trump-era America (including this very funny/scathing fake commercial starring Jon Hamm). And since a lot of films and shows about African-American life has been made free in the wake of the Black Lives Matter protests that have filled the country’s streets these last three weeks, it was only a matter of time before it joined the pack.
And so it has: As per Deadline, Nance’s show — which runs a mere six episodes, and should only take you a little over three hours to watch in full — can now be streamed on HBO’s YouTube Channel, through June 26.
Nance — whose shape-shifting 2012 feature An Oversimplification of Her Beauty is well worth tracking down, and who wound up dropping out of what would have hopefully been a wonderfully bizarre sequel to Space Jam — released a lengthy statement about the show and its relevance to what’s happening right now.
“It seems like everyday people ask me if and when Random Acts of Flyness will come back,” Nance wrote. He then suggests one reason is because, over the last two years, he and his creative team have been absorbing the countless things happening in the culture:
I don’t speak for the wonderful group of artists who made the show but I hypothesize that we were working to process and heal through the constant acceleration of the violence we survive – centering our body-spirit(s) and our swarms in the doing. Heal how? Heal by using the tools we are given by our ancestors, our progeny, and being(s) whose nature we have no words for: movement, touch, stories, our time, vibe, irresolution, rest, folly, and fun.
Nance wound things down by saying that he hopes “the show can help us heal in real time – from the violence: the misogynoir, the transphobia, the white supremacy the socialism for whites that we misname capitalism.” Concluding, he wrote, “I hope it can be a part of the understanding, the reading, the feeling, the healing. I intend this on behalf of my ancestors, backward and forward in spacetime, Season II coming soon.”