Singer Brandy Norwood in September 16, 2010.

The Angry Black Female

Black Attack: BET’s “THE GAME

For the past four weeks I have been watching “The Game”; however, each episode left me somewhat confused and uncertain as to what the writers had in mind. The first episode made me feel as if I were on mental pop rocks. You know, the candies that kids put in the mouth and it starts popping, making your mouth feel like it is going in a million directions at once? That’s how I felt after watching the first, second, and third episode.

But, as a die-hard “The Game” fan (seriously, I watch YouTube episodes of the show in my spare time) I continued to watch the episodes and despite what I am about to post, I probably will continue to watch the show because there are few and far in between shows that have an all black cast and I’m trying to show my support for black actors.

 BUT, the play on stereotypes has to STOP or at least slow down a bit.

Last night, I was disgusted by Chardonnay’s character (played by Brandy Norwood). Since her introduction to the show, Chardonnay has always been the stereotypical loud, ghetto, no holds barred black female, but this episode took it to another level. Here she is in a movie theatre and not only did she bring in her own food(which is not allowed) but when the movie begins she yells at the screen and seems to have no concern that she is ruining the movie for others. Her justification being (and I paraphrase) “I paid for this movie just like anybody else, so you shhhhhsh!”

Furthermore, let’s even talk about the name “Chardonnay”…really BET?  You couldn’t have given her a less stereotypical name.

I can’t take any more neck rolling, eye rolling, teeth sucking, finger snapping stereotypes of black women. Come on, Tasha Mack’s character (played by Wendy Raquel Robinson ) was enough for one show.

Instead of focusing on the colorism concept (which seems to be the overall theme for Chardonnay and Jason Pitts (played by Coby Bell ) relationship), it becomes diluted when there is a surplus of stereotypes from one character. The newfound understanding that Jason Pitts character has of his own culture becomes lost in the stereotypes. But it is not just that character. Melanie’s (played by Tia Mowry) comment of “I’m all for the ghetto. I buy barbecue once a month” (paraphrase) also irked my nerves, but I digress.

No, all black women are not angry.

No, all black women aren’t named after cars and liquor.

No, all black women don’t wear weave and pat their heads.

No, every black women does not regard Steve Harvey’s book, Act like a lady, think like a man as the gospel.

I know that these realities do exist, but in a world where the representation of black women has, at times, been less than par, having only these representations of black women can be disastrous.

For example, while interning abroad a woman was kind of rude with me over the phone. I told my coworker (a white male) what the woman had said to me and before I could continue the story, his immediate response was, “I know you got all ghetto on her didn’t you, sista girl…” as he snapped his finger and rolled his neck.

*pause*

CLEARLY, he had me confused and even if I wanted to “get all ghetto” it would not have been with the woman on the phone but with him for having the audacity to act in such a way that showed me his perception of not only me but my race.

Yes, I have my Chardonnay moments but don’t we all? Don’t we all get upset and angry at ceratin situations? And yes, I can take it there but to think that I do not have tact and know what is personally and professionally proper due to your stereotype of a certain race of women is downright rude.

I have been to several movie theatres domestically and internationally and never have I seen anyone act in that behavior—black or White or Spanish or Asian. Just saying.

For reasons that I’m sure are surface and subliminal, I was offended by the movie theatre scene of “The Game.” And although there was another scene of another black female with Jason Pitts’ character at the movie theatre and the women did not bring her own food or yell at the screen, for me, the damage had already been done.

Some people may think, but it’s just a tv show. You are taking it too seriously.

To that I say that the media in general not only reflects but impacts culture as well and sometimes, the tv representations are the only “real” interactions we have with people of a different race/ethnicity.

Some people may think, but other races are stereotyped as well. What about them?

I never said that was appropriate either, but in a world where the minorities are less represented in many forums (particularly media), it is necessary that the representations we do have are positive ones that show the many faces of black women.

Food for thought.

What are your thoughts?

Advertisements