The ABC sitcom Abbott Elementary has continued to garner praise since its December 2021 debut. And on the Season 5 premiere of The Shop: Uninterrupted, the show’s creator and star Quinta Brunson received even more accolades in-person from fellow creative and multipotentialite Childish Gambino a.k.a Donald Glover.
“Sometimes I watch something that’s like ‘good,’ but I’m like ‘Yeah I wouldn’t have done that,’” said Glover. “Watching [Abbott Elementary] I was so jealous cause I was like ‘This is a good show.’ And it’s hard to do that on network television. That’s hard to do — doing it on a big stage like that and not pulling punches and understanding yourself enough to get it through, that’s really hard.”
Those words of admiration meant a lot coming from Glover, who has previously called most new entertainment “boring” and “not that good” because people are afraid to take risks anymore.
Brunson didn’t just accept Glover’s compliment, though. She went further and gave Glover and Issa Rae their flowers as well, acknowledging her peers’ work as instrumental in carving a path she and others could follow.
“It is hard,” Brunson replied to Glover. “But then what helps make it possible is what you’ve done with Atlanta, what Issa’s done with Insecure, what even the smaller shows like Flatbush Misdemeanors — those things all equate to finally all the puzzle pieces coming together.”
However, Abbott Elementary hasn’t only been a hit with TV critics and fans. In fact, one of the show’s biggest enthusiasts is Ms. Joyce Abbott, Brunson’s sixth-grade teacher after whom the series is named. And she appeared on an episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live! last month to surprise her former pupil.
Kimmel set up Brunson, who was his guest, by asking her when was the last time she saw her former teacher. “The last time I saw Ms. Abbott was probably sixth grade,” Brunson began her statement. But before she could continue, Ms. Abbott appeared on the large screen behind the two, and Brunson was overwhelmed with tears.
“Quinta was an awesome student,” Ms. Abbott shared with the audience. “When she came into my class she was really shy, timid, but as I challenged all of my students, we had to speak in complete sentences. I built their confidence that whatever you want in life you can do it.”