Roots Part 4 Recap

Roots Finale Recap: How Will History Remember the 2016 Remake?

In the fourth and final chapter of History’s admirable Roots remake, Chicken George at last was able to return to the States. But any sort of a happy ending was still a long ways off for Kunta Kinte’s lone grandchild and his family. Read on, and after we follow the treacherous path he was forced to travel, you can grade the miniseries in TVLine’s poll and share your thoughts.

FAMILY REUNION | Although Sir Eric swore that, once George had won him enough cockfighting money to pay back Tom’s gambling debt, he’d free the slave, the Englishman didn’t honor his vow for more than two decades. When finally George was permitted to head home to the Lea farm, he discovered that his mother had passed away, and, rather than free Matilda and the children as promised, his father had sold them to a North Carolinian by the name of Benjamin Murray. As soon as George arrived at the Murray plantation, Benjamin’s son, Frederick, made his cruelty plain by telling Matilda that she could get reacquainted with her husband only when the workday was over. Even when the couple was allowed to reunite, sadness cast a shadow over them: Three of their kids had been sold just weeks after they’d arrived at the Murray plantation, and son Tom, a gifted blacksmith, accused his father of living “the sportin’ life” instead of looking after his family. And things were about to get worse: Rightly fearful that, the moment Frederick could, he would re-enslave George, Matilda made the heartbreaking decision to send him away.

Roots Part 4 RecapBATTLE SCARS | Ordinarily, Tom did his damnedest to stay out of trouble. However, after wife Irene was raped by white men during the Civil War, he began working to help the Union with fellow Murray plantation slave Jerusalem and Frederick’s fiancée, Nancy, who was secretly a spy for the North. When their plan went awry, Frederick hanged Jerusalem and, since Nancy wouldn’t name any other accomplices, he hanged her, too. Meanwhile, George and fast friend Cyrus joined the Union army and barely made it out of the massacre at Fort Pillow, Tenn., with their lives. When the war ended, a bittersweet celebration erupted at the Murray plantation: Matilda and her family were free, yet she was understandably haunted by the loved ones that she’d always miss. Later, after Cyrus showed up at the plantation with George’s hat, Matilda charged Tom with the task of bringing his father home safely.

Roots Part 4 RecapTHE NEXT GENERATION | Two weeks later, Tom — with a little ancestral guidance — tracked down George near the Tennessee border. Alas, the war’s end didn’t mean that they were out of danger. On their way back to the Murray plantation, they were attacked by bushwhackers and, in the wake of Lincoln’s assassination, turned away by a disgruntled Union encampment… temporarily, that is. Thanks to George’s talent for winning over a crowd, he was able to convince the soldiers to let them stay by talking up Tom’s skills as a blacksmith. Back at the Murray plantation, Benjamin offered his former slaves a deal to stick around and work the land, but it was a deal of the raw variety, so they passed. Frederick, of course, couldn’t let George and Matilda leave peacefully, so he picked one last fight. Literally, his last — George shot him dead. On the trail to a new life, George invited Cyrus to become what he really already was — a member of the family — and Tom asked his father how to name his and Irene’s newborn daughter “the right way.” Though the infant was Tom’s first child not born a slave, he noted, she’d still need to be a warrior like Kunta Kinte in order to stay free. So, in the end, Tom kept up the traditions of his ancestors, traditions that later inspired his great grandson, Roots author Alex Haley, who we saw (as played by Laurence Fishburne) with his forebears as the miniseries drew to a close.

So, what did you think of History’s Roots? Vote in the poll below, then hit the comments with your review.

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15 Comments
  1. Cef says:

    I really loved watching it..it had me so anxious it was a grwat sequal and insider of the life of kunta kinte what really happen to kunta after kissie was sold the world may never know i guess

    • DakotaS says:

      I loved it too but if you read the history (& criticism) of Alex Haleys book (which he eventually admitted was ‘faction” or a’ historical novel”), this was not a totally factual story. Research shows a lot of dates didn’t match up plus he plagiarized parts of the book (& settled a lawsuit). That part was unfortunate but stories like this SHOULD be continued to be told because it’s AMERICAN HISTORY & it’s important for blacks & whites to see. If you liked ROOTS, I strongly encourage you to watch the WGN series UNDERGROUND. Its another way to tell the slave narrative through the slaves perspective & shows slaves efforts to escape

  2. Ugonna Wosu says:

    Loved it loved loved it. Every night of this was amazing . The last few moments with Alex Haley and his ancestors and other slaves was moving. They seemed to say both “welcome ” and. “Thank you” with their eyes.

  3. kaliber says:

    Absolutely no idea. I had set all of them to record and was planning to watch them all at once, but Dish Network’s Hopper continues to be a complete and utter failure. Every single one of them had the recording interrupted for 30 minutes at some random point in the middle, then continued recording the rest of the episode. Didn’t lose my signal at all, and nothing else was wrong, just Roots, every night.

    I guess I’ll have to catch it when it comes to Netflix or Amazon.

  4. Liza says:

    It was fairly well-done, but not necessary at all. The original Roots was/is a powerful and iconic masterpiece!!!

  5. Pete says:

    A+ they did a great job updating it and honoring original. The cast was fantastic. Don’t recall every seeing Rege-Jean Page (Chicken George) in anything prior to this but I expect to see him in many more things, he was really good.

  6. Ninamags says:

    Having never seen the original, I decided to watch this dutifully. Don’t know how far off the book they got but it was compelling.

    The actors portraying Kunta and Chicken George were great.

    • Stev says:

      Well the book had a lot of made up stuff so just enjoy it for what it was. A TV show with some historical elements. Check out wgn underground too

  7. APFW says:

    I was for the most part captiveally entertained and at the same time sickened by the attitude of the times. The strong performances of actors Malachi Kirby, Anika Noni-Rose and Rege-Jean Page really kept me glued even when the story lagged. The forth episode in, my opinion, was not on par with the first three episodes.

  8. Max says:

    I only hope more than 5 million Americans watch this.

  9. I thought it was a awesome remake and the actor who portrayed Chicken George was magnificent. I really liked how the serious shows George revolving as well as Tom coming around.