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FX’s Atlanta is a show that’s not afraid to pull off a high-concept episode or spoof another format. With the episode “The Goof Who Sat by the Door,” the series hit another high-water mark in its impressive run which came to an end last week after four seasons.

A complete one-off that can be enjoyed without any knowledge of the show or its characters, “The Goof Who Sat by the Door” is a 35-minute mocumentary about Thomas Washington, a fictitious Black animator who is mistakenly made CEO of The Walt Disney Company and uses his newfound authority to make “the Blackest movie of all time,” Disney’s 1995 fan favorite A Goofy Movie.


Featuring an absurd conceit that requires an incredibly long Michael Eisner sabbatical, the untimely death of a doughy interim CEO, and a case of mistaken identity, the episode’s candid delivery and spot-on imitation of overly dramatic Hollywood history documentaries make for a truly immersive experience that had some viewers questioning if at least some of the story was real.

A healthy portion of authentic early-1990s archival film is intermixed with fabricated footage and modern-day interviews with era-appropriate celebrities including Brian McKnight and Sindbad, who give extremely convincing straight-faced performances in their interview scenes.

Far more than just a slapstick retreat from the main Atlanta storyline, “The Goof Who Sat by the Door” offers a poignant criticism of race relations in the United States in the early 1990s that feels completely contemporary.

The episode offers up alternative interpretations of many of A Goofy Movie’s most iconic scenes which are sometimes hilarious and sometimes heartbreaking. By the end of the episode, it’s hard not to feel deep sympathy for Washington and the people who loved him.

Of course, the episode is complete fiction and a far cry from the real story behind A Goofy Movie, which was documented in a 1995 “Making Of” special on Disney Channel but which is nowhere near as entertaining.

Atlanta episode “The Goof Who Sat by the Door” was written by Francesca Sloane and Karen Joseph Adcock, and directed by Donald Glover.

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Jamie Lang

Jamie Lang

Jamie Lang is the Editor-in-Chief of Cartoon Brew.

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