Wow, comets return faster than that.
The NY times ran a piece pondering if Washington’s lead role represents a “new era of post-racial television where cast members are ethnically diverse but are not defined by their race or ethnicity.”
Hmm…post-racial TV, huh? Only took us 40 years to get another black female dramatic lead and now we’re post-racial?
In any event, it does raise some interesting questions regarding the type of roles and characters we should embrace in the 21st century.
Must they be good or moral characters like those on Cosby, especially given the media’s ongoing negative stereotyping of black life on screen? Or should they be more complex, both good and bad, more like Washington’s Olivia Pope?
Tell us if you want your 21st century black characters to be all good like Cosby or more complex like Olivia Pope and why.
I’ll leave you with this from Dr. Brittney Cooper, assistant professor of women’s studies at Rutgers University, on the unique character of Olivia Pope.
“She’s the most complex black female lead we’ve ever seen in prime time. You’re not getting an archetype, you’re not getting a stereotype, you’re getting a fully-fledged human being.”