Sara Ramirez
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Dear White People's 4th & Final Season Is a Musical For Some Reason

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This is how they do it, apparently. 

After a two-year-long wait, the highly-anticipated fourth (and last) season of Netflix's popular, queer-inclusive dramedy series Dear White People is finally on the horizon, and according to a 40-second teaser the show released on social media, it's going to be a...musical? (Don't worry, we're just as curious and positively perplexed as you are!) 

"Set against the backdrop of senior year at Winchester as well as a not-so-distant, post-pandemic future, Dear White People Vol. 4 finds our characters looking back at the most formative (and theatrical) year of their lives," reads the official description of the music-filled, fourth round of brand new, final episodes, which is set to premiere next month on the streaming platform. "Both an Afro-futuristic and 90s-inspired musical event, Dear White People Vol. 4 is a can't-miss, farewell experience with one pitch-perfect promise: sometimes the only way to move forward is to throw it back."

Based on writer-producer-director Justin Simien's award-winning 2014 film of the same name, Dear White People is notable for featuring Lionel (played by DeRon Horton), a gay character who is exploring and learning more about himself and his sexuality, in its main cast. 

"Lionel is like me in 2002," Simien, who came out as gay in 2014, said to Out back in 2019 about Lionel's continued journey when the show's third season was premiering. "I sensed completely and I felt so comfortable in my Black, gay body and the way I navigated the world. Because Lionel has just been dipping his toe in the waters of homosexuality. And the Black gays, they throw shade at him in that first season." 

"That's how I've always felt, but I [didn’t have the] opportunity to explore queerness and Winchester and how queerness intersects with whiteness and Blackness because Lionel has always been a bit at a distance from it," he continued. "And so, I just wanted to throw him in so we can really get into the meat. That's a criticism I got for the movie that I always wanted to make right. Because I always wanted to talk about it. It just wasn't character appropriate at the time for Lionel to take us on a tour of being gay. He barely knew he was gay himself when we first meet him."

Hopefully, we get to learn ever more about Lionel in this last round of Dear White People! (All while getting to experience some '90s throwback tunes along the way...)

The fourth and final season of Dear White People premieres September 22 on Netflix! 

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