My partner and I have been re-watching Black-ish, and every time we do, we are reminded of its unique power and importance. Black-ish is a comedy that doesn’t shy away from getting deep and real about life, specifically for black people in America. And no, it’s not just the obvious things. If you’re not black, you might be surprised by the many things that are different, or worse, or important simply to the culture of black people, as explained on the show.
So here are some reasons why I love it and why you need to watch Black-ish too!
I’ve cried (or came close) watching so many episodes of Black-ish. Why? Because it’s not afraid to tug on your heartstrings with profoundly moving monologues about life as a black man. About black history. About life in general. If you don’t cry at injustice and inequality, then maybe this show isn’t for you.
You will learn so much from this show. Bring a notebook with you if you have ever wanted to learn about black history but didn’t know where to start. American history, black history, the justice system, all of it is found here in detail in just 20 minute episodes!
As I said, this show doesn’t hide away. It doesn’t tiptoe or briefly mention things and then walk away like other shows. It goes all in, guns blazing, not caring if you’re uncomfortable. Because you should be. Uncomfortable conversations are important. Vulnerability is important. It bridges connect and opens a dialogue for understanding, empathy, and progression.
Granted, Dre (the main character, the father) is a bit much. Actually, he’s totally EXTRA and it can get annoying! But you know why when you watch the show, because he’s the one causing the drama, as well as demonstrating the importance of speaking out and speaking up, yadda yadda…
But he’s also so funny. There isn’t one single character (maybe the twins?) who stands out, it’s just the family dynamic that makes you laugh and cry in one episode. You laugh at Charlie, Dre’s work mate and co-black guy in a white office. You laugh at the ridiculous but sadly real stereotypes and comments that his ignorant colleagues make.
You just laugh, I promise! As heavy as the show many sound from this post, it’s not. It has a magical way of balancing the heavy stuff with humour without being too much or too insensitive. It’s masterful!
Topics they cover that are important:
- Systemic racism
- Institutional racism
- Postpartum depression
- Kids coming of age
- First period
- Going off to college (or not)
- Mass Incarceration (and what happens when you get out)
- Father-son relationships
- Black history (duh!)
- Gun ownership
- Homosexuality and marriage
Representation and Black stories
And lastly, you need to watch Black-ish because it is a show that has given a home to black actors, writers, and stories. They have clearly allowed the cast to actively participate and tell their own stories. From young to old, poor to rich, all walks of life come together to tell important black stories that tug at the heart.
We need more and more shows like this, so that young people can grow up seeing themselves on the screen looking beautiful and important and being heard! I love Rainbow’s (the mother) and Zoey’s (the oldest daughter) hair and clothing style. It inspires me and you don’t know how important that is unless you are Mixed or Black, too.
It’s so important, so yeah, let’s keep these stories on the screen.
Check out Black-ish on Amazon Prime (UK) or wherever you can get it. Trust me, it’s worth your time.