So, for some of you this may be old news, but I like this story….
On August 24 – 24, an event called KCON took place in Los Angeles at LA Memorial Sports Arena. This venue accommodated a doubling of attendance from last year to around 20k.
G-Dragon performed his new single Nilira with Missy Elliott. The history-making aspect being she’s the first and only, so far, non-Asian to perform at this KCON. Although she’s not the first black woman artist to do a song with a K-Pop star. Lil Kim did one with Se7en. I think Amerie did one with him as well. There may be others.
See how black women roll?
From what I’ve read, G-Dragon and Missy Elliott are mutual fans. He asked her to collaborate with him. What makes it work is that they have a similar style. They mesh very nicely – in sync, in rhythm and flow.
Spot Check: Controlling That Narrative About Beauty
I’m not the biggest fan of the man, based on his performance in office, but the shrieking and howling by the media is hilarious.
All I notice is that the biggest complainers of the President calling Kamala Harris, “The best-looking Attorney General in the country,” were white women in the media.
Folks, some people hate it when others are the center of attention. These white women, who claim to be feminists, but are really white women supremacists – in other words, everyone must worship them – just hate it when they are not the queen bees, beauty queens or objects of (sexual) attention for every man on the planet.
They complain too much about it for anyone to find them believable.
And it ain’t about sexism. That’s a phony cover. What actually made the comment objectionable for those white women complainers is that the President (who in their eyes is a black man) wasn’t doling out that delicious “Hotness Factor” to them. I can bet that if he said that about a white woman in the same position, none of these chicks would be whining about “sexism”.
Cause I’ve yet to see one of them get as bent out of shape and indignant when other men, celebrity or otherwise, talk about how they are the absolute finest women around. And that’s regardless of whether it is true or not about a particular white woman – as long as her hair is bleached blonde.
Jealousy doesn’t look good on these people.
Poor President Obama. He told the truth (from his perspective) about a black woman (yes, I know she’s mixed) and the liberals, progressives and feminists who are supposed to be his best buds turned on him.
Don’t forget now, the biggest group of voters who didn’t support Obama the second time around were white women, but you’ll never see that in the mainstream media. They have a narrative to push. I’m surprised they didn’t try to turn his complimentary remarks into hate speech – against them.
Well, I suppose it is, once the man uttered the word, “Best-looking”, they heard nothing else.
Ever see that kind of nonsense run amuck for any other group of people?
Yeah, yeah, I know all the parties in question are mixed, but I’m going with a bit of social grouping here. This is for when you ask yourself, Why does a very famous, incredibly powerful and wealthy black man have to apologize for calling a black woman good-looking?
Update: Faith (actsoffaithblog.com) has written a very compelling and incredibly insightful post about the show. This is in regards to Star Jones trying to dictate via twitter to Shonda Rhimes (executive producer / writer / et al) who she wants Olivia Pope to be partnered with.
Did I happen to mention that the analysis is awesome? Please, check it out:
Apparently, for the first time in eons a black woman (with two black parents) had a show of her own on network television. I love soaps. I love the drama. The crazier the better. This show moves much faster than I expected. And what beats the most powerful man in the world being “wide open” for a black woman? Very stimulating. 😀
I was initially worried that Shonda Rhimes was going to bury her main character, Olivia Pope, behind all those “special” white women on the show. She did not, and does not, do that. What I love most about this character is that she is: petite, elegant, beautiful, smart and vulnerable. Yeah, she’s not superwoman. She cries, but when she’s ready – her mind gets to work and she runs a superb game. I love any show that brings on a woman as a “fixer”, but not someone physically pushing her weight around, cursing and screaming at anyone, or doing anything stereotypical. Not an eye roll, neck twist, lip smack, or hand-on-the-hip in sight.
It’s a fine line, presenting a black woman with this amount of complexity, but this show rides it nicely. And I like that with this character, there’s much more to learn about her. Every couple of episodes peels back another layer to that mysterious onion. Wonderful.
So, I want to thank you, Shonda Rhimes for making this show, and letting the world revolve around Ms Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington).
I like Columbus Short‘s character, Harrison Wright, as well. I’ve seen him in a few movies. I like the way he speaks, his careful delivery of lines. He really looks like one of the few actors who enjoys himself and gets immersed in his role. I think what I’m trying to say is, I can’t recall if he’s ever played a thug. He seems able to avoid falling into stereotypical “black guy” roles most other black actors get by default.
Maybe, unlike the others, he’s found a way to move beyond those roles….
Low and behold on NCIS: Los Angeles they found out that LL Cool J‘s character Sam Hanna is married and a father! Not only that! She’s a real two black parent black woman! I am shocked. Shocked! I tell you. Usually, when a brown skinned actor like LL is cast with a woman, she’s skim milk black with a teaspoon of chocolate.
She’s darker than him!!! Sorry, but the credo with color casting in the media is always a black guy who’s charcoal and a woman who looks half white. It’s racism against dark-skinned black women and lighter complexioned black men. So, it was nice to see something different for a change.
And the plot of the show? I don’t know. I had stopped watching NCIS: Los Angeles, because I was getting tired of all the other characters having a life whilst LL Cool J did not. I will have to catch up to the season. All I know is that Sam Hanna’s wife, played by Aunjanue Ellis, is an undercover agent going by the name of Quinn. From what I see, I like how she rolls.
Part of me is afraid to see the next episode, because of what Hollywood usually does with black families….
Overall, I really like the NCIS shows. My longtime favorite is the original. Mark Harmon has aged well. Still a handsome man. The formulas for these programs work.
Update: Almost forgot there was an NCIS episode (Season 10, Episodes 10) that featured Rose Rollins as a Navy Lt Commander married to a former military officer who happened to be white.
As I said to my girlfriend, “They killed off Shane (Jon Bernthal), why I need to watch it now?” The show follows the novel / comic book sorta closely. I heard they deviated from killing Shane off earlier, because he had a fan base. Why not keep him around indefinitely? Oh, well.
Apparently, a show with so many characters needed to make room for one of its centerpieces: Michonne (Danai Gurira). She’s a samurai-sword wielding warrior kind of woman. Keeping everybody safe from zombies. All right now!
I’m all into zombie, science fiction, action and mystery stories / movies, so I’m thrilled about this.
And I saw that trailer for World War Z with Brad Pitt. I cannot wait!!!
Eureka – Salli Richardson-Whitfield and Tembi Locke
This was the last season for the show. I love how it ended. I never saw the first episode, but it gives it a nice loop, which make the show self-containing. If that makes any sense.
I usually dislike (hate, hate, hate!!!!) it when the main characters of a show are required to fall in love. I know that’s what the fans usually demand. And 9 times out of 10, that will kill off a good show. It’s like, once the writers throw them into bed, they’re depleted of new material, and go, “Now what?”
I have to say that the chemistry between Salli Richardson-Whitfield (Allison) and Colin Ferguson (Jack) worked. It felt genuine. I wanted them to be together. And when they did, it didn’t get lame like we see with most other TV show couples. They seemed like a perfect fit. I think because they were really really good friends that respected and loved one another. Being “in love” was another aspect to their relationship. And goodness, I wanted to be in a couple like theirs!
Even though their erotic tension was muted, it wasn’t primary, like we see with most other shows, where everything goes flat the minute they get together. The failure with other couples (Moonlighting) was because the sincerity wasn’t there from the beginning. Other couples worked (Cheers?), because the tension never goes away, sometimes it intensifies.
And breakups are fine even after they get together, that shows the writers know how to work their material.
Update: Crazy of me to forget Tembi Locke. She played Grace Monroe, the wife of Joe Morton‘s character Henry Deacon in the alternate universe. She was a major character on the show as well.
Person of Interest – Taraji P. Henson
This is the first program I can recall where a black woman had the top billing on a network program, I mean as a major character, not just part of an interchangeable ensemble. And this show preceded Scandal – timewise – by a country mile. I enjoyed POI immensely. I love shows with intricate plots. But I lost track when CBS pulled the online plug. So I have to wait for it via DVD or some other method to catch up with it.
I liked the chemistry between Taraji P. Henson and Jim Caviezel. I don’t need for them to get romantically involved or hot and heavy (hmmm, maybe though). I liked their dialogue. When I started watching, the show gave me the feeling of a modern day revamping of Batman as a former special forces soldier (Jim Caviezel) with Catwoman (Taraji P. Henson) as a cop. Don’t know if anyone else feels that way, but that’s just my take.
Deception – Meagan Good
Brand new show. And if I’m not mistaken, will be the second major network show with a black woman as a lead character. Wow. If it’s fun like Revenge with the quality of Scandal, it should last. Haven’t seen it yet, so I cannot judge.
What’s also interesting is how Hollywood can now locate beautiful two black parent black women to star in TV shows. Were they hiding somewhere before?
Anyway, hope the show does well. I’ll try to catch up and see it.
Warehouse 13 – CCH Pounder as Mrs Irene Frederic, Genelle Williams as Leena
The character of Mrs Irene Frederic is still going strong. Although she doesn’t appear in as many episodes. The character Leena, played by Genelle Williams, “died” in episode 10, Season 4. Not sure what happens after that. I heard a new character – a black woman – will be joining the show. We’ll see.
Suits– Gina Torres as Jessica Pearson
I love this show. The dialogue is witty and silly. It doesn’t lean too heavy on the lawyerly (is that a word) stuff, but deals more with problem solving before they reach the courtroom. The show manages to make chasing clients down and dealing with sheets of paper for court filing seem exciting. That takes talent.
And I don’t care how bad a show is, if Gina Torres is on it I’m watching. Yeah, I’m a fan. Did you know she’s Laurence Fishburne‘s wife? I had no idea. I only ask that she cut back on cooking for him: he’s gonna explode any day now.
Yes, Mark-Paul Gosselaar (Mr. Saved By The Bell) has a show with two – count ’em, two – beautiful black women (with two black parents). And the show is already into it’s third season.
I think that’s a TV network record.
Parenthood – Joy Bryant
I’ve never watched the show. Unfortunately, I never had the time, and I didn’t realize it was still on and running. Maybe I’ll catch it one of these days. I don’t think I ever saw an ad for the show. Interesting.
It’s been on for a good number of seasons. Good for them.
Parks and Recreation – Retta
Community – Yvette Nicole Brown
I get these two shows – P&R and Community – mixed up. Although I shouldn’t. I honestly thought they were the same program. And like Parenthood, I haven’t seen any advertising for P&R.
Last, Last, Last! Update:
Grey’s Anatomy – Chandra Wilson
After Isaiah Washington left, tried to hang in there. Couldn’t. But glad to know Ms Thing is handling her business on the show. I read somewhere that they found her character a man. Hmmm.
Glee – Amber Riley
Years ago, I watched the first episode. Never went back. Although, good for her that she’s still there. She can sing. I don’t know about the others.
Sonja Sohn is in the following six episodes: Over the Line, Down & Out, Best Laid Plans, Odd Man Out, You Can Run and Game Change. Really enjoyed her performance. She needs her own show. Having her as a one-of-a-kind black woman Federal Marshal or Military Official hunting down someone would be FANTASTIC.
Like I wrote before (re: Scandal), love to see it when they have a woman doing this kind of thing. As long as it has tension and good drama, it will work.
Although I see Burn Notice as having run it’s course 2-3 seasons ago, I still check it out. Don’t know how they do it, but every episode gives me anxiety attacks. They just know how to rack up the insanity.
Love Sci-Fi / Fantasy / Cop Drama Genres
But the following three shows have gone beyond jumping the shark:
Vampire Diaries – Kat Graham
Fringe – Jasika Nicole
Bones – Tamara Taylor
True Blood – Rutina Wesley
Been trying to get started. One day I’ll grab the DVD collection and see what’s up.
Emily Owens MD – Aja Naomi King
Smart, as well as beautiful; apparently, a Yale graduate too. Haven’t watched the show. I guess it’s a funny Grey’s Anatomy?
I had no idea she was there from the beginning, but yeah, episode 1, she’s there when it all begins. I like her character. Although my true favorite is Nolan Ross played by Gabriel Mann. He’s the guy with the best lines.
Nice campy drama. Doesn’t take itself too seriously.
I wanted to watch this show, but I think the Fox network has been moving it around. I hope it stays around so I can check it out. GMR is from a short-lived black (married!) spy couple show on NBC a few years back.
And thanks to all of you who reminded me to add these shows in the comments section. I appreciate it very much! 😀
Special Mentions: No Black Women Starring, But Enough “Color” to Be Interesting
The CW TV Network – Kristin Kreuk and Nina Lisandrello
I’ll give the CW props and much credit for having shows with black women. I watch the new Beauty and the Beast, and although the two mentioned above are not black women – I like Kristin Kreuk, and Jay Ryan is extremely easy on the eyes – it may be the first show I’ve seen with two minority women as cops in the lead.
Interesting show. And fun to watch.
The CW TV Network – Nikita – Maggie Q
I watched this show when it first came on. I have to give them credit, there was a black girl (Tiffany Hines) in the first season and partially in the second. There were a few more on the program, but since I lost track of it around season three, I couldn’t tell you who is in the current lineup.
As Faith says in the comments, this is the first time an Asian (or half-Asian) woman had her own show on a network. Not bad.
I love this show. I also like the growing relationship between Jonny Lee Miller (as Sherlock Holmes) and Lui (as Watson). I’m a fan of Lucy Lui. I’ve always liked her “coolness” in the roles she plays. The show doesn’t rush the plot(s), although some episodes are a bit predictable, but I like that they refrain from constantly chasing after and shooting at people. I find that to be a waste-of-time filler on a number of cop dramas.
I mentioned in the comments, that by episode 5 – called Lesser Evils,Anika Noni Rose plays Lui’s best friend. I very much liked that, because I cannot recall the last time I ever saw a black and Asian woman portray friends, of any sort, on a major network TV show. Usually that role is filled by a bubbly blond with big teeth, head and a perfect disposition.
It was really nice to see a difference for a change. Sometimes I get the impression from TV programs that black and Asian women can only have white women as best friends. And that’s not a normal or healthy reality for the media to promote. As far as I’m concerned, anyone and everyone can play someone’s best friend.
Here’s the top 20 grosses of 2012 (grabbed from boxofficemojo.com):
Marvel’s The Avengers
The Dark Knight Rises
The Hunger Games
The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2
The Amazing Spider-Man
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted
Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax
Ice Age: Continental Drift
Snow White and the Huntsman
21 Jump Street
And special mention to the following:
Battleship (2012) – Rihanna as Petty Officer Cora ‘Weps’ Raikes
Immortals (2011) – Ayisha Issa as High Priestess #4
And yes, it’s awesome to see another black woman in a big box office hit. See Hollywood? Including black women doesn’t hurt your bottom line at all. So, stop lying about how our lovely, dark-skinned faces cost you people money with the overseas market (and even domestic). I mean, if I can even see black women in Korean dramas speak a few lines, what’s the excuse for Hollywood besides racist sexism?
I confess that I haven’t seen Skyfall, yet. I will when it hits Amazon, Netflix or on a DVD at some point. I’ve cut back on going to the theaters.
You know the main reason I don’t see movies? Unless it’s an action film where I don’t care for the dialogue, I find that 90% of the time, I have no idea what characters are saying. When I watch something via Amazon or on DVD, I put the close caption on. And it turns out people are saying things completely different from what I expected.
I think that’s why I prefer classic old films, I understood what everyone said. Today, most of what comes out of an actor’s mouth is unintelligible. Not paying $10 plus to hear somebody mumble.
The Hunger Games – Amandla Stenberg as Rue
I don’t have much to say about this film. I didn’t see it. I have no plans to see it. I think there was an online ruckus, because white liberals admitted that they are indifferent towards the death of “innocent” black girls, don’t believe they exist or something to that affect. Please DO NOT explain the deal to me in the comments: I don’t care. I guess people were surprised by the blatant racist sexism hatred or something.
Hey, I grew up in NYC, capital of white liberals. Folks finding out that they don’t regard black girls and women as human beings is no shocker to me…. But, oh well … gotta find out the truth at some point, I guess.
21 Jump Street – Holly Robinson Peete as Officer Judy Hoffs
I had loved this show. This is where I became an early fan of Johnny Depp. I always hoped there would be something to that something between his character and Holly’s.
Didn’t see the movie, so I don’t know how much screen time she got. But it’s nice to know they remembered she was on the show. It was rare to see a black woman in a role like this one.
I’d give you more, but I’m exhausted. I’m happy there was a lot to include.
And if people remember other programs I may have missed, please list them, minus the Tyler Perry stuff.
So, Was Hollywood Good to Black Actresses in 2012?
I’ll give them a B. Was I too generous? Well, I’ve definitely seen an uptick in two black parent black women, even in commercials, so I’ll give them credit for remembering we exist. There are some movies or TV shows I wont watch if it seems like a waste of time, whether it has a black actress or not.
I always want to support the good, quality works that have black women in it. Like it or not, the media is an incredibly powerful image tool. If we look good / great, people do treat us accordingly, it’s conscious and subconscious.
So, I don’t mind if we’re invisible sometimes, I’m not looking for blind inclusion each and every time. It’s when we are included and look a hot dysfunctional mess that gets me upset.
Happy New Year. Let’s see what 2013 brings.
Prayers go out to all those who have lost loved ones. May we all find more love, forgiveness and peace in the coming year.
I sense folks want to talk about many different subjects.
Links as usual are welcome.
Happy Sunday. 😀
Added: Thursday, August 9, 2012
Apparently, U.S. gymnast McKayla Maroney didn’t win a gold medal. Hence the scowl. Check the tumblr site satirizing her. Wee bit funny.
So, who is Lolo Jones and what was the hype all about?
The media has 2 memes: their chosen “winners” – the Maria Sharapova types, and then there are others who have to prove themselves and win a la Gabby Douglas. One gets the money upfront for having a certain “look”, the other has to break world records to get some cheddar.
Douglas was part of a US Olympic squad that hadn’t won a gold since 1996. She won gold in the all-around, becoming the first gymnast in American history to win the gold medal in both the team and all-around.
She had to earn it first to get the fame and money, but you know how it is. It’s alright though.
She has the best attitude.
Grabbed this image from – blackyouthproject.com – hope they don’t mind.
… And is the Olympics over with yet? Seems endless at this point. Should be a couple of sports, not judged by people, but scored by time and points only. Would be over within 3 days or less.
Serena and Venus Williams Continue to Break Records
No surprise there. They play tennis so fierce, they make it look easy. Soon they’ll have enough medals, trophies and awards to fill a museum.
They have four gold medals each, more than any other tennis player in Olympic history. If they can come back and get more, no one else will ever touch their record(s).
You go girls.
Message For Black Girls and Women
Get out of Blackistan. You cannot succeed or achieve your dreams surrounded by toxic people. The only folks you need are familial or reliable Gladiators. Serena and Venus had a Gladiator in their dad. I hope the people around Gabby Douglas step up and fill in that role. Young black women need more protection from the vampires out there. She, and others like herself, still need more time to mature before they get exposed to the “real world.” She’s just a teen, not a young adult. There’s a time and place for the interviews, social media and face-time with the blood and soul suckers.
To become successful, join the mainstream, and find a safe haven. That means integrating with the rest of society. Social, environment and emotional segregation is a dead-end.
Focus. Don’t let the haters distract you, or you wont be able to get the gold. In this case, literally. I think a number of US failed just because of the distractions. Part of the battle will always be mental.
Your mind must go there first, before your body follows.
Don’t be afraid to dream big. And don’t tell certain people your plans – unless you are looking to be talked out of it.
Sometimes it’s best to do your thing and not talk about it first (or at all). It’s like waiting for permission. You shouldn’t give that kind of control of your life to anyone. They don’t deserve it.
Spike the ball. It’s okay to gloat once you’ve done your thing. Bragging is the best revenge. Yes?
Humility has it’s time and place. Sometimes you need to rub it in people’s faces just how awesome you are.
The following link is an article from oneasianworld.com: Mauika Hicks makes K-Pop history by being the love interest and lead dancer for Jay Park (he’s American of Korean descent).
Some excerpts – the rest you’ll have to read at their site. It’s quite an informative interview.
Paulette:How does it feel to be the first African-American female lead dancer and love interest in a Kpop (Korean pop) music video (MV)?
Mauika Hicks: It’s such an honor and blessing. I’ve received so many positive messages from young African-American girls and people from all races telling me how much I have inspired them. To inspire people is all I could ever ask for. I feel so proud to be a part of history in a sense.
Paulette: When you got the part, were you aware that you broke the glass ceiling for a black woman to be in a Kpop MV?
MH: Not really. It came as quite a shock.
And this …
Paulette:Jay Park is a pretty big star. He was the lead singer in 2PM, opened for Ne-Yo, performed with MusiqSoulChild, just finished his first sold-out U.S. tour, appeared in a couple of films and the list goes on. Were you familiar with his work before being cast in the MV?
MH: I didn’t know Jay before the video. Once I booked the job, I did a little research online and realized just how big of a star he is!
Paulette:You and Jay have this amazing, off the chain chemistry in the MV. How was it working with Jay?
MH: Thank you! It was very easy working with Jay. He was very down to earth and hands-on in every aspect of the video. Sometimes it can be a challenge working with artists, but not with Jay. He was very professional and just amazing to work with!
Mauika Hicks appears at the 2:07 mark.
He’s Famous And Fearlessly Included a BW
You know how it goes in the US, when someone wants to eventually become famous – they put a couple of black faces in their videos or music. When that success has been achieved, we’re the first faces gone. Everything fades to white.
I wanted to highlight something about Jay Park: he’s already a big star. Yet, he didn’t shy away from bringing a BW into his music video – even in Korea (a country not known for embracing or being a multicultural society, obviously). He didn’t use any “scare away the fans” excuse for excluding a BW, unlike some of the hypocrites and phonies over here would.
Good on him.
Remember, Hollywood and the American Media loves to claim that our black faces will make people – around the entire world! – avoid their crappola media content if we’re front and center.
Call bull dung on it. It is their bigotry at work, not the international folks. And people will always criticize the content – that’s a given.
Last Note: How White Women Roll
We have a famous actor – from Europe – being stalked by crazy white supremacist women (along with those horseface online and print magazine editors). He dares to publicly be in a relationship with a black woman, while he is incredibly hot and rich. It is not happening before he’s famous, and he’s not hiding her like a dirty secret either.
And I bet it will not affect his career one whit.
He’s being criticized by these same Neo-Nazi bitches who will chime in “love is colorblind” on every IR forum, but only if the chick is a white woman. Otherwise, they will wonder what’s wrong with the guy, denigrate the black woman’s looks and basically go bonkers. Because every man must find them attractive, or the world is off-kilter.
Always remember these are the same people who run the media. That’s why you rarely see uplifting images of black women in a positive, attractive and alluring manner, because these people want it that way.
I started watching these shows, since Hulu added this category. What’s interesting to me, is that I’m beginning to understand what the characters are saying in Korean. Words are floating around in my head, because they’re repeated so often. I can read a few words in some languages, but I’ve never picked up a language as fast as this one. I’ve always viewed myself as foreign language impaired. I’ve had Spanish in school. I’ve listened to Spanish for years, and I still cannot make heads or tails out of most of it.
In the Korean Dramas, the people speak slow enough that I can tie the English subtitles to the spoken words. The dialogue isn’t complex, very long or involved. On occasion, some characters that supposedly spent time in the US, or are Americans, make a determined effort speak to English. Although badly. Nearly everyone mumbles words they need to enunciate.
Media Image is Everything
Since watching these programs, I’ve come to realize that they aren’t made just for a Korean audience. They are created with an awareness that the rest of the world will be paying attention.
These shows have given me a different impression of Koreans, as opposed to the ones I’ve been acquainted with here in the USA. Do I see the portrayals as realistic? I don’t think that’s the point of the programs. Whatever images there have been of Korean men, have been modified, if not overhauled, by these shows.
In recent years, the wild success of male celebrities from South Korea — sensitive men but totally ripped — has redefined what Asian women want… Gone are the martial arts movie heroes and the stereotypical macho men of mainstream Asian television.
…Yoshimura signed up last year with Rakuen Korea, a Japanese-Korean matchmaking service, to find her own Korean bachelor. And she is hardly alone. More than 6,400 female clients have signed up with the company…
In part, the new allure of Korean men can be traced to a larger phenomenon known as the “Korean Wave”…
…the number of foreign tourists traveling to South Korea leapt from 2.8 million in 2003 to 3.7 million in 2004. The bulk of the growth, South Korean tourism officials say, stemmed from Korean Wave-loving Asian women. Partial statistics for 2005 indicate the feminine tide has not yet let up.
For the South Koreans — who have long suffered discrimination in Japan and who have hardly been known as sex symbols — it all comes as something of a shock.
Entertainment industry leaders in Seoul credit the phenomenon to good marketing coupled with an uncanny response throughout Asia to the expressive nature of the South Koreans — long dubbed the Italians of Asia. A hearty diet and two years of forced military duty, industry leaders and fans insist, have also made young South Korean men among the buffest in Asia. Most important, however, has been the South Korean entertainment industry’s perfection of the strong, silent type on screen — typically rich, kind men with coincidentally striking looks and a tendency to shower women with unconditional love….
Throughout Asia and other countries, women are watching TV shows and movies to such an extent that they have become enamored of the fictional representation of a specific group of men. So here we have proof that there is a direct connection between a positive image of a group and the corresponding response to it.
What Some of the Guys Look Like
I find some of the Korean male actors smoking hot, some cute and others moderately good looking. Although I find the “fashion” on the shows rather odd looking, but hey, I congratulate men who aren’t afraid of being edgy.
Positive propaganda: is enhancing imagery to increase the desirability of a group.
The entertainment industry, basically the media, alone is responsible for the complete overhaul of the image of Korean men, so much so it has made the men hot commodities for the women who travel the country looking for one as a husband. It’s overturned reality and made such an indelible impression on women just from watching Korean Dramas.
In case you ever wonder why black women have negative, degrading stereotypical images, always remember to thank Hollywood and our media. Think about it the next time you think it’s important to embrace the “othering” of black women with those “keeping it real” negative images.
If anyone really wants to improve the desirability, popularity and increase of desire for black women: the best looking have to be highlighted, the most sophisticated has to be highlighted and the most engaging, lively and lovely ones have to be embraced.
Otherwise, we’re just shooting ourselves in the foot.
So, think about who you are embracing if the only thing they highlight about black women is constantly negative or off-putting. Those people aren’t doing you any favors. They’re deliberately sabotaging you.
Update: Korean Men Marriage Rates
I was asked to provide some data, so I dug up some stats. If they seem funky to anyone, please put up the correct numbers.
Throughout the world, more males than females are born. This imbalance is natural. However, in Asian countries it is exasperated by female reduction from sex selection in the womb (abortion), export adoption of girls, and other extreme methods. The result is a population of males outnumbering females. Based on the gender imbalance in Korea, social changes, population movement to urban areas, there are more men than women available and interested in marriage.
So, whom do Korean men marry? Funny enough, it turns out they marry all women. Although black women are a miniscule portion of the population in Korea, there are likely marriages between the two. With the USA having 1.3 plus million Koreans, it turns out that they are the East Asian men black women are most likely to marry. Certainly not in significant numbers overall, but it does happens.
And I’m just as surprised as y’all are by that information.
I found it bizarre that this was in the The Wall Street Journal*, just like I thought it was bizarre there was a similar article about black women in The Economist** several months (maybe a year?) ago. To me, it reeks of “let us observe these strange creatures known as black women,” similar to zoo animals.
Plus, the author’s subtext is disturbing: more black women should marry out, to potentially improve the rates of black marriage. To me, marriage is a non-sequitur in this context, particularly given that some serious cultural issues aren’t magically repaired by marriage (i.e. ability and desire to provide, being an effective father, knowing HOW to maintain a relationship). I mean, I’d hate for a black woman to have her black man propose primarily because he’s afraid of her being taken off the market rather than….wait for it, actually wanting to be married and prepared for that stage. Not to mention how unfair it is for a non-black man to be a consolation prize because a black man isn’t available or willing to marry. But hey….as long as they’re married, I guess.
I get the supply/demand, economics side of it: more black women date out, fewer are available to black men, black men step up their game. Which is fine, for future generations, I suppose. But for the women NOW who want the best partner for them, it’s entirely possible that even willing black men aren’t the best partners because of the aforementioned cultural issues.
I also give the side-eye to any author who misuses statistics, which the WSJ author did in a major way. That 70% of unmarried black women? Includes widows and the divorced. It is also includes age 15 and up. You would think a law professor would either dig a little deeper with the stats or be more more precise in using them.
Now, I’m not denying cultural differences between whites and blacks with the marriage rate. But it’s certainly convenient for these article to throw out that 70%, as if nobody wants da po’ black woman. Not to mention using the quotes of THREE black women as representative of the majority. And when you correct for college education, the marriage disparity between black and white women is significantly smaller.
Thank you for the contribution and sparking this post, Daphne. 🙂
That article does have an air of “What can we do about these black women no one wants?”, right? 😀
As far back as the 1990s, perhaps even earlier, the NY Times periodically ran articles about the large number of college educated unmarried black women without children along with the high rate of out-of-wedlock births of single black women.
The angle changes somewhat, but it still has the familiar reek of: Black women’s relationships are a problem for society. Although I suspect they really mean, Black women’s existence is a problem for society.
But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Breaking It Down
You did a terrific job of nailing what’s wrong with the WSJ article. It’s not doing us any favors, but it wasn’t meant to anyway. This article insults a number of people, but the main recipients are black women and white men.
Imagine if there was a shortage of marriageable partners for white men, and black women were offered up as the last choice,second rate hope for them, because it would improve their group’s prospects with other, or the same race of, women? Even though they purportedly have a white woman shortage.
Say, what kind of logic is that?
Logic that reinforces a negative image of black women. So, no surprise a black man wrote that article for a major newspaper that reaches around the world. Anything for a couple of dollars to denigrate black women is not a hard task for some black men. Regardless of how well meaning he thinks is.
The logic is to continue presenting black women as racially, socially and bizarrely backward thinking: we’re worried about our HAIR, the complexions of our children, and our inability to be comfortable with non-black men. Oh, what superficial, silly, non-normal, non-female creatures we are. We are still “othering” ourselves. Those selected black women presents an image of people living in a self-imposed prison who lack any sense to free themselves of it.
The logic used is a sneaky backhanded method of blaming black women for the lower rate of black marriage compared to other racial groups. The author cannot directly say that black women must do the asking, since to a mainstream audience it would be outside the norm and viewed as ridiculous. Instead, he indirectly makes the case for marrying non-black men, again like we could make them marry us somehow, to prompt black men into asking.
The key ingredient missing from the entire WSJ article is, What makes a black woman happy? What would make her feel good? What are the ways to approach her if she appears socially remote? Examples of their femininity, their normalcy, or exotic allure, would be enticing to the non-black men reading the WSJ to look at black women positively. It would peal away at least one thin layer of separation between black women and non-black men.
However, making black women attractive, approachable and normal was not the intention of the article.
As you’ve noted, Daphne, the actual purpose is: How do we eventually get black men to do X, Y, and Z? Because it always has to be about them, beginning, middle and ending. People need to let that go and forget about closing the barn door. The horse that ran out is now a great-great-grand mare to her offspring. Black men cannot be cajoled, conned or bribed into marrying black women, especially when they have no desire or interest to do so.
Black women have to be happy on their own terms. I’d respect the mainstream media if there were more articles pertaining to black women, without the insincere hand-wringing, making their own decision to integrate intimately with non-black men: by working with, making friends with, dating and marrying them. And solely for their own benefit.
I’ve been meaning to do this list for a while. These are shows in which a black actress gets to say more than two or three words a scene. Oh, and yes, some are mixed, a few are foreign born, etc. etc.
The TV programs aren’t listed in any particular order.
A town full of geniuses, where weird things happen. I started watching it two seasons ago, I stopped because the character Fargo got on my nerves. It got really interesting this past season, as it finally developed beyond near-miss awkward on the relationship between Sheriff Jack Carter (Colin Ferguson) and Allison Blake (Salli Richardson-Whitfield).
She plays a nice, smart, easy going woman. Not only that, her character is central to the show. If I’d known about this program I would have watched it from day one. I always thought she’d be hidden away. Nope. They put her front and center. Props to the creators of Eureka.
About two vampires in love with the same woman who looks exactly like her vampire ancestor. That’s all. Nothing more. Although there’s a smoking hot guy on the show who plays a werewolf, Mason Lockwood (Taylor Kinney). Pant. Drool. (Damn, they just recently killed him off.)
The tiniest black woman on television is on this show. Her name is Katerina Graham. She plays a “witch” (insert eyeroll here) on the show. She’s so petite, the other little girls look like Amazons next to her. She sorta reminds me of Stacy Dash.
This is a new program. It has a very strong Homicide, Hill Street Blues and other cop dramas, aura to it. Does it really take place in Detroit? Dunno. But wherever they’re filming, everything looks authentic. I’ve never watched the Sopranos, but the lead actor is Michael Imperioli, who I saw in a guest role as a Detective on Law & Order.
I like this show. The boss of the detectives is Lieutenant Maureen Mason, played by Aisha Hinds, who I last saw on the dreadful, waste of brain cells show Dollhouse (yes, I watched every episode to the bitter end). She didn’t have much to say on that show, but I admire her “look.” She does the baldie quite well.
Law & Order: Los Angeles
I am a Law & Order fan girl. I am someone who can watch the first few minutes and know whether I’ve seen the show before or not. I’ve watched every single L&O and L&O: SVU episode. The only shows I’ve missed are the Law & Order: Criminal Intent episodes without crazy Vincent D’Onofrio as Det. Goren. He was as fun to watch as the psychos he badgered.
I was pleased to see Regina Hall as a District Attorney Assistant. They’ve already moved one actress off the show, and the DAAs don’t hang around for long. But it’s still nice to see her play a straight role. In case you don’t know her, if you’ve ever watched the Scary Movie parodies – that was her with the ditzy blonde (Anna Faris). They had nice synergy on screen. 😀
I remember Tamara Taylor as the woman from Party of Five (never watched the show, but the ads for it were memorable). The main characters are a woman with a goofy voice Dr. Brennan (Emily Deschanel) who’s supposed to be a “genius” and Angel (David Boreanaz) as Special Agent Seeley Booth. I enjoy the program for its humor and I like mysteries.
Tamara Taylor plays Dr. Camille Saroyan, who is the boss of the scientific investigative group (sorta like a CSI / CSU). She also plays a nice, smart, well dressed, professional woman at work. I like her character a great deal, and during the first year she and Angel used to knock boots. Alas, that didn’t last long. She’s been man-starved ever since. I get irked when a show lets all the unattractive women have a man, and the beautiful black woman has nobody. Spare me.
This is a Jerry Bruckheimer production, so every week expect something to blow up and many people to die a gruesome death. The lead woman is a Becky The Vampire Slayer type. What do I mean by that? Ever since that show, nearly every tiny, little, rail thin blond / brunette / Asian (see newNikita)/ Latina can fight a muscular guy nearly twice her size and beat him. She can ever buck him off her of her, when he’s sitting on her and she’s flat on her back. It’s funny, because male characters will be beat using the same method of fighting, and their combatant is an even match in size.
My Dad says I have to remember to suspend disbelief when I watch these shows: I think I also need to be drunk or high.
Anyways, it’s a new show, and the cast includes Rose Rollins. The men are easy on the eyes, especially big blond buff Cole Hauser.
This show has been on for a while, third season already. It has the Captain from Firefly. The “Brown Coats” know who I’m talking about. He’s gained a lot of weight on this show. Dude is getting wide. The girl who plays his daughter is so pretty. I love red heads.
I like Castle. Nice cast. Very amusing. Tamala Jones plays the medical examiner. Nice to see her in a steady role.
This show features the venerable C.C.H. Pounder as Mrs. Irene Frederic. She’s not there every week, but I believe her character is integral. She has a special link to Warehouse 13. One of the main characters of the show is the mysterious Leena, played by Genelle Williams.
I like the show. It’s sci-fi.
I’ll admit, she wasn’t given much to say, or do, in the first season. Yet, Astrid (played by Jasika Nicole) has been in every episode since the first. Love her hair. I think I love the Alter-Astrid more. Having her do those probability calculations is rather awesome. Nice to see a woman doing mathematics so quickly.
Apparently, this show is still on. I stopped watching it around season 2 or season 3. Mindless gore gets boring after a while. I’ll probably catch up via DVD later on. The boss of the police squad is the very very ambitious Lt. Maria Laguerta, played by Lauren Vélez. I will say I missed the angry black guy who was her best buddy. There’s one season where she gets rid of a competitor in the most devious way…. Unbelievably good.
Outside of a few YouTube clips, I haven’t seen the entire show yet. I will. I love to catch up to cable shows on DVD. This show, as nearly everyone knows is produced by and stars Mrs. Jada Pinkett Smith. You go on with your bad self, Mrs. Smith.
Why do some shows start off boring, and then dive right into overwrought? I’ve missed a few seasons. This show is … I keep looking for someone to like. For some reason, the pilot aired with Merrin Dungey as Dr. Naomi Bennett. I think I know who should play Mrs. Obama in any future film. Actually, she should be the wife of Blair Underwood on The Event, but don’t get me started.
Audra McDonald takes over, managing to look like the most miserable black woman in America, episode after episode. You try to like her, but one has to give into the dislike for her character. After all, that’s what the Shonda Rhimes wants. And dutifully, we shall obey.
Law & Order: SVU
Sometimes they even give her a story line: Tamara Tunie. She’s the medical examiner. I’ve noticed that for many years she wore her hair dead straight, then one day BANG! There were the curls. Lovely.
I hate this show, and all the characters on it. It’s been crap since they got rid of Isaiah Washington. Why are there ninetyelevenhundredthousand unattractive white women (I’ll make a half exception for two) on the show, and one barking hyena (you know, the one they used to call “The Nazi”) that’s supposed to be the only woman who can’t get or keep a man?
Buncha idiots. They should kill fire everyone and start fresh. I meant the writers, not the cast. Nevermind.
Feel free to add any I may have missed from BBC, BBC America, and all the rest are welcome inclusions. I don’t watch cable shows until I get the DVDs or start with Netflix again.
** Updates **
Thanks for the feedback, ladies! I have a few more shows to add.
It is new this season on CBS, and it might not last long. It has the bubbly, smart and lively Jurnee Smollet as new associate Lisa Tyler. The show has Jim Belushi and Jerry O’Connell. I like this program. They give a good amount of time to Ms. Smollet, and her character is shown a healthy amount of respect. Nice.
I don’t know if I can fairly say that the black woman, Gina Ravera (as Detective Irene Daniels) on this show ever got to say more than two or three words. From what I’ve researched, she’s no longer on the show. She was characterized as “difficult” and was dating the only black male officer on the show. ¿Por qué? Why?!
I thought she made a better couple with the latino officer, Detective Julio Sanchez played by Raymond Cruz. The romance with the black officer created lots of drama, interfering with their work. She became the black drama queen. Everyone else could have drama, but hers was unforgivable.
Anyways, I’m giving her a head nod.
Haven’t seen it yet. This show is on its 2nd season already! Wow. Out of the massive white cast there is: Joy Bryant as Jasmine Trussell, and Tina Lifford as her Mother, Renee Trussell.
According to Truth P.: “She plays Jasmine. A single mother who is co parenting and I believe is rekindling a romance with the white father of her child. (rolls eyes at the fact the couple isn’t married and at the fact the son is 5 and has just met his father.)”
Tina Lifford and Alfre Woodard could play sisters.
I searched to see if it’s returning. We’ll see if it happens. Jazine reminded me of this program: “…for a hot sizzling minute there were sparks between Timothy Olyphant and Erica Tazel in the F/X series Justified. They never got together romantically, but the sexual tension and chemistry between them was palatable in one particular episode.” Yes, girl. Lots and lots of undercurrents in that scene. Whoo.
And we can see why, she’s pretty and cute.
Now, I’m someone who likes cop dramas. I didn’t check this out, because I thought it was going be a version of Becky The Vampire Slayer in Blue, a variation on a theme of which I find highly annoying. Another heads-up by Truth P.: “Euneka Okuma of the show “Rookie Blue”. She is a main character on the show AND there is also another black woman on the show named Melanie Nicholls King.”
Still waiting to catch up by DVD. And thanks to Truth P. for reminding me of this program: “…Can’t forget about Rutina Wesley. She stars on the hit show True Blood.”
Gotta give a special shout-out to the producers of this show. I’ve read the books. There is not one black woman in any of the books who is a central character. So thank you very, very much for that addition. As we all know, when a black actress gets work, she puts her heart and soul into the role, ’cause she knows it may be a couple of years, before (and if) she gets work again.
My bad for not even mentioning this one the first time. Special shout-out to Boris Kodjoe, J.J. Abrams, and Josh Reims for even entertaining this concept.
I mean, let’s get real here. His character has a black wife. Y’all know for yourselves, if this show starred some of the other negroes out there, he wouldn’t push for a black actress. He’d get to play, I dunno, a Cuban or something, even if he’s the darkest negro on television, and would be truly eager to have a white actress as his wife. He’d pretend he has no power to push for a black actress to get a few guest starring roles, ’cause he doesn’t have that kind of power.
Or he’d be happy to be a star in a program, in which show after show includes other black male actors guest starring, his co-stars having past loves / entanglements / romances, but he’ll be satisfied as the only character without any relationships. At all.
Law and Order: UK
As mentioned by Tyco: “Law and Order UK is now airing on BBC America. It stars Freema Agyeman.”
Thanks to everyone for mentioning these programs!
And a special, special thanks to the producers, creators, and writers of these programs for giving us such wonderful, professional, smart, hardworking, attractive, and interesting character roles for black actresses.
Flashpoint has been on CBS for four years! Where have I been? I don’t own a TV, so I don’t keep up with all the new or existing programs. Since I have to shift through Fancast, Hulu and Netflix, it’s hard to know which shows are still running and which have been canceled.
I’ve actually found a real black actress (of West African ancestry) on a prime time show! Wow. That is amazing.
It is actress Olunike Adeliyi as Officer Leah Kerns. Her character comes across as rather normal. I love the fact she wears a short natural. She isn’t strident, loud, angry, obese, fat, cheeky, overly sexy, or in any way stereotypical. She’s down-to-earth and speaks well. I appreciate seeing a black character like her on a cop drama.
The show is produced by an army of people, but I’d like to thank them for adding a respectable, dignified, and mature woman of color to their program.
Can I tell you how cool it is to see a black female cop? I wanted to be a cop at one time until I realized I might be trigger happy. I think I would prefer to be a detective. I like solving puzzles.
According to IMDb she’s in only 6 episodes. Right now, these are the ones I happen to be watching. It is wonderful to see someone with her looks (yes, I went there) on TV. I see so many beige and question-mark race women on TV, I wonder what’s going on. They have the right to get work, but I don’t want anyone pretending that that is what black women look like. Okay?
Flashpoint had me confused at first. I knew it was filmed in Canada. I watched the skylight for the show, but I’ve yet to hear them mention that it’s Canada. They don’t specify the city. Maybe I’ve missed it. It still has a very NY feel to it. All the accents sound regional like Chicago and NY to me. Very broad and very deep.
The show moves very fast, and even though it seems to involve characters issues, they aren’t deep or integral to the storyline. It’s the protagonists (new distraught gun wielding person every week) who sets things in motion, and it is the job of the police to diffuse the situation and/or neutralize this person by any means necessary. They work hard try to understand the protagonist’s motivations, issues, trigger points, family ties, and only use deadly force as a last resort.
I like the show, and I will try to watch it for as long as Ms Adeliyi is on.