Aretha Franklin isn’t called the Queen of Soul for no reason. So, it’s especially impressive to watch Grammy and Tonywinning actress Cynthia Erivo bring the entertainer to life in this Nat Geo bio-series. As with other bio-anthologies in the “Genius” series, Aretha dramatizes the pivotal moments that helped shape this brilliant innovator. There is plenty of fodder—her life as a child musical prodigy, getting pregnant at age 12, her championship of civil rights and a complicated relationship with her father. A standing ovation to Nat Geo for taking Genius—the first two seasons of which focused on Albert Einstein and Pablo Picasso—to new heights.

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