“Snowfall” Season 5 Revealed

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David Bien-Aime, Copy Editor

After a year’s wait, fans were pleased when the FX Network officially announced Snowfall season 5 is set to premiere on February 23, 2022. Created by the late John Singleton, Eric Amadio, and Dave Andron, Snowfall is a crime drama that takes place in South Central Los Angeles, California during the height of the crack-cocaine epidemic in the 80s. The series follows Franklin Saint, played by British actor Damson Idris, and his life as an infamous drug kingpin. 

This show focuses on the devastating impact the crack-cocaine epidemic had on communities, more specifically African-American communities during this time period. It puts into perspective how poisoning and addictive crack cocaine was when it hit those communities.  The epidemic in the 80s led to a great abundance of addicts, gang violence, greed, mass incarceration, homelessness, and police brutality; the series highlights all of this.

 Snowfall also brings up some significant historical events like the CIA’s involvement in Nicaragua, the CIA’s fight against communism under Ronald Reagan, and their involvement in smuggling cocaine to the United States. There was even a Gary Webb-esque character (Irene Abe), who was very important throughout season 4. Gary Webb is a famous investigative journalist known for exposing the CIA for their ties to the cocaine epidemic. Similar to the character of Irene Abe, he also came close to exposing the CIA but paid the price for it. 

It has been confirmed that season 5 takes place in the summer of 1986. FX released an official trailer hinting at some key plot points for the upcoming season. One of the main plot points the new season will focus on is the death of Len Bias and how that impacted the War on Drugs, making it harder for Franklin Saint and crew to get illegal business dealings done. Len Bias was an NBA player who died of a cocaine overdose only two days after being drafted into the NBA on June 17th, 1986. He was a first-round, second pick. As you can imagine, the news of his death sent shockwaves across the sporting world. Len Bias became a token in the fight against drugs. The consequences of his death lead to a significant increase in LAPD (Los Angeles Police Department) policing. CRASH (Community Resources Against Street Hoodlums) was also more involved in the mass incarceration of people living in crack-filled communities. During this time, it seemed the only way to stop this epidemic was by brute force.

Franklin, his family, and his crew will face many obstacles, dealing with not only the increase of violence in the streets of Los Angeles but the overt hostility of policing as well.  They’ll have to find ways to navigate through their perilous lifestyle.