TELEVISION: Extraterrestrial Segregationists

An HBO series brings the supernatural to black-white relations

In Day of Absence, Douglas Turner Ward's one-act play of 1965, a Southern town wakes up one morning to find that all its black people have disappeared. The result is so chaotic -- garbage piling up, houses left uncleaned, meals uncooked -- that the whites plead for the blacks to come back. Thirty years later, racial satire has taken a bleaker turn. In Space Traders -- one of three episodes of Cosmic Slop, an HBO anthology series from Reginald and Warrington Hudlin (who wrote and directed the film House Party) -- aliens arrive on earth with a modest proposal for the...

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