RMU students react to HBO’s “Lovecraft Country”

“This is a story about a boy and his dream.”


Eli Joshua Ade/HBO

Sean Gilbert, Contributor

“This is a story about a boy and his dream” are the impactful opening words to the TV series “Lovecraft Country.” 

“Lovecraft Country” began as a 2016 dark fantasy horror novel by Matt Ruff, exploring the wild racist world of the original H.P. Lovecraft. Howard Phillips Lovecraft was an American writer for weird and horror fiction (Sci-Fi before its time), who was known for his creation of what became the Cthulhu Mythos.

Despite his successes as a writer, it was no secret that H.P. Lovecraft was belligerently racist. He wrote a poem called “On the Creation of N*ggers,” as well as featuring multiple racist depictions of minorities throughout his various works.

The televised series “Lovecraft Country” is about a group of African Americans living in the Jim Crow era on the South Side of Chicago. The story takes place in the Lovecraft mythos, which is full of ghosts, witches, monsters and demons.

Atticus Freeman is one of the leading characters, portrayed by Jonathan Majors, who had to make his way back to Chicago after getting back from the Korean War. He had to find his father, who had sent him a letter saying that he was missing finding their rightful family birthright.

Other characters included Jurnee Smollett as Letitia ‘Leti’ Lewis and Michael Kenneth Williams as Montrose Freeman.

“’Lovecraft Country’ is a beautiful piece made by Jordan Peele, which black history and fictional novelty intertwine for a bigger purpose,” said Jessica Abby, a senior at RMU. “’Lovecraft Country’ was amazing work and great for a young black creatives that feels like outcasts in their twisted fantasies, ‘Lovecraft Country’ is now the blueprint.”

This series included an abundance of laughter, pain, and sorrow. Despite the fact it told a fictional story, it added a lot of nonfictional facts. The story is based on The Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921, a massacre that spanned for two straight days in the killings of successful African Americans, Emmit Till’s murder in 1955, highlighting the effects of how the black community felt throughout the grieving of Emmit Till and Rosa Parks bus sit in of 1955 that led to the massive Civil Rights movements.

Izon Pulley is another RMU student who watched the show.

“I loved Lovecraft Country because it was different from all of the other typical storylines involving African Americans,” he said. “Story lines such as ‘black man gets shot,’ ‘making it out the hood,’ ‘or sports.’ This storyline is a game changer and I look forward to more work being done.”

Lovecraft Country is a one-of-a-kind TV series that covers all aspects of the true sci-fi geek with an abundance of black history to follow. Check out the show on the HBO network and HBO Max for the completed season.