blackest thing, Featured, Pop Culture, Race & Politics

Viola Davis’s Emmy Win And Speech Was The Blackest Thing That Ever Happened This Week

How to Get Away with Murder is not a great show. It’s not a bad one, but the way it shifts from 40 minutes of “Eh, let me check and see what’s on the Travel Network tonight” to 20 seconds of “WHAT THE FUCK JUST HAPPENED???” every episode is so conspicuous that you consciously become aware how manipulative it is. Now, being manipulative isn’t a bad thing. All great shows do it to some extent, and we (the audience) expect and desire it. But with HTGAWM, the manipulations aren’t just foreshadowed or alluded to. They’re screamed at you. “OF COURSE IT MAKES NO SENSE FOR THAT GUY TO BE A MURDERER. BUT WE’RE MANIPULATING YOU RIGHT NOW, SO DEAL WITH IT.”

The show remains compelling, however, because Viola Davis’s Annalise Keating is unlike any character who’s ever existed on television. She frequently vacillates between scary and scared and laconic and lascivious and devout and devious and motherly and Lady MacBeth in the same episode. Sometimes in the same scene. There is no archetype for someone like her. Perhaps there will be, eventually, but it will be based on her. She is a wonder.

And she’s Black. But not the type of Black we’re conditioned to seeing and expecting on television. Especially not in this type of role. Let me put it this way: I’ve seen a lead character have her hair tended to by her mother. But I’ve never seen that happen when the lead character had the type of hair that made the same sound I heard as a kid when my mom was combing my sister’s hair.

That there was even a question about whether she’d receive the Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama is an indictment on Hollywood’s relationship with race. Black women, specifically. This was a surprise. But it shouldn’t have been. And it wouldn’t have been if this was Meryl Streep or even Robin Wright in this type of role. But although Davis put her whole entire foot into this character, the still very real reality of Black people having to surpass the standard just to receive acknowledgement for meeting that standard still exists. For Davis — or any other Black woman — to win, it couldn’t just be a great role amongst other great roles. It had to be some shit no one has seen before. And her speech, where she got up in front of all those White people and led with a gotdamn Harriet Tubman quote (!!!), alluded to that.

Also, anyone still doubting the Blackness bonafides of Davis’s win just needs to remember the following metric: Were any prominent White Tears shed?

If the answer is yes — and, after reading Nancy Lee Grahn’s tweets, the answer is a resounding yes — then it was appropriately Black.

Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a columnist for GQ.com And he's working on a book of essays to be published by Ecco (HarperCollins). Damon is busy. He lives in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes. Reach him at damon@verysmartbrothas.com. Or don't. Whatever.

  • I didn’t watch any of this but from what I’ve seen the hugs and props to and from her peers was big. I still think Regina King should have won an Emmy for Southland but a win is a win.

    • PaddyfotePrincess

      I miss Southland.

    • Epsilonicus

      Is Southland that good? I don’t know too many people who have seen it, that is why I ask

      • I liked it. Unlike most cop shows it was about the cops and not solving cases.

      • KMN

        Southland was EVERYTHING…I agree with Paddy…it should’ve never been cancelled…ugh

        • PaddyfotePrincess

          Yeah…I’m still salty.

      • miss t-lee

        Yes. Southland was awesome.

    • miss t-lee

      ALSO.

  • Jennifer

    Nancy Lee Grahn was the whitest thing to happen last night. Her figurative tears spilled from sea to shining sea — proving that Viola’s speech was hella correct.

    • cakes_and_pies

      White feminism at it’s finest.

    • Epsilonicus

      When Nancy Lee Grahn said: ” I feel betrayed by ppl I would’ve marched for” on Twitter I laughed. She sounded so butthurt that Black folks don’t bend and kiss her ring.

      • Jennifer

        Lord, but she was so sincere. I also wanna know what history book taught her that Harriet Tubman dug that Underground Railroad. Bless her heart!

        • Epsilonicus

          You didn’t know? The shovel is in the Smithsonian lol

          • Jennifer

            LMAO! Next to Dorothy’s ruby red slippers, I bet.

            • Epsilonicus

              And there is a piece of the railroad track from the Underground Railroad too! The one MLK conducted lol

        • JamesInstagram

          The one that Porscha Williams wrote.

      • WORD. I don’t even watch prime time TV, but I’ve seen that mindset a lot. If you’re marching for us just to get your a$$ kissed, then run off and join the Klan then. We don’t need you.

      • Yonnie

        And somebody was like “WE MARCHING RIGHT NOW?! WHERE YOU AT?!”

        • Epsilonicus

          Right?!?! She ain’t with us shooting in the gym!

      • HeyBooHey

        This really happened in 140 characters or less??

        • Epsilonicus

          Really. She really said that.

        • JamesInstagram

          And people were dragging her until the sun came up.

      • QuirlyGirly

        For that comment right there she deserved to be dragged by twitter and slung in the shut the h3ll up corner

        • Manny

          No she graced us with multiple tweets. Even said Viola never fac3d discrimination.

    • Cleojonz

      I hadn’t heard about this and just popped over to read what her deleted tweets said. Thank goodness for screen shots. This b*tch had the nerve to say that Ms. Davis had never been discriminated against? GTFOH! You talking about the saltiest of white tears right here.

      • Jennifer

        She had the unmitigated gall to accuse Viola of being a “Hollywood elite.” First of all, thanks for noticing! Secondly, why does she say it like it’s a negative thing? Finally, Viola toiled in theater and bit parts in TV and movies for over 2 decades before this moment (Antwone Fisher’s crackhead mama, anyone?). That special combination of luck and hard work are finally benefiting a black woman in Hollywood, and Nancy Lee is hating. But, her hate gives me wings. I feed off of it cuz it’s hilarious.

        • Cleojonz

          Sure Viola IS Hollywood elite now. She clealy had no clue just how long she’s been doing this. She makes it seem like she just decided to do this recently and miraculously gets all the roles she wants now. She graduated from Julliard in 1993. 2015 is a LONG time from then. Nancy Lee is just upset no one cares about soap opera actresses.

          • Sigma_Since 93

            “She clearly had no clue just how long she’s been doing this. She makes
            it seem like she just decided to do this recently and miraculously gets
            all the roles she wants now.”

            This tickles me how White folks think they’ve “discovered” us; they don’t know how long we’ve been grinding.

            • RewindingtonMaximus

              They don’t. Nothing we do means anything until they say “oooh gifted negro…your talents have caught my eye. Come, let me show you off to others”.

          • I’m just waiting to see what BS roles she took to pay the bills in the mid 90a. You know she did some foolishness right?

            • Cleojonz

              You know there is. I hope she never had a Coco from fame moment.

    • RewindingtonMaximus

      Funniest thing about white pride is how quickly it must come out to defend a stance that never wins simply because they don’t know how to read or listen properly.

    • Val

      I wish I had enough interest to go0gle ‘Nancy Lee Grahn’ because I have absolutely no idea who she is.

      • Jennifer

        Nobody but hardcore soap opera heads knew her until last night. Use your Google fingers for some sort of personal enrichment — it will be time better spent.

    • miss t-lee

      She’s still on twitter tryna clean it up…for like 12 solid hours now…lol

      • Jennifer

        Nancy Lee should just delete her page. She is NOT helping herself at all. Wave the white flag, girl!

        • miss t-lee

          It’s like poking a dead body with a stick at this point.
          Gotta know when to bow out.

      • Cleojonz

        She is, talking about THEY won’t stop. If you had left it at your weak a s s apology it might have seemed more sincere.

        • miss t-lee

          She dug that hole for herself, and now she’s upset that folks aren’t accepting her halfazz apology.

          Sheer comedy.

          • Cleojonz

            Some people should really only let their publicists use their public social media accounts because this ish is a regular occurrence now. Most of the time it makes no sense why they are coming for the people they are coming for in the first place. It’s like you do still want to have a career right? If you wouldn’t say it to that person’s face you shouldn’t type it in 140 characters either.

            • miss t-lee

              She mentioned last night that she didn’t have a publicist, I was like, that’s apparent…lol

  • Kim

    I agree, I caught an episode or two, turned the channel, nevertheless I was moved by her speech. White opinions are like herpes, they never go away.

    • TeeChantel

      F*ck that is too funny and oh so true.

    • *steals gif for future use*

    • miss t-lee

      This gif is killing me softly…lol

    • NomadaNare

      This gif tho

    • Mary Burrell

      Dead at “white opinions/tears are like herpes, they never go away” May i please borrow that please?

    • Missy

      I think i need to catch up on my Shakespeare

    • AngelMonique

      iCannot with this gif! Lol

    • brothaskeeper

      Greatest basketball player ever (yeah, I said it)….

    • maleka2120

      This gif just gave me all the life! I’m dying!

  • Cleojonz

    I love how Ms. Viola came to these here awards steeped fully in her blackness. She came sans wig in all her beautiful naturalness. She gave a speech quoting Harriet Tubman. I don’t even watch HTGAWM, but I lived for this win.

    • Illumina

      Yep. Miss Viola been rockin her hair on the red carpet for years now and always looks fabulous. That’s why I can’t stand Wendy Williams trifling azz to this day.

  • laddibugg

    HTGAWM isn’t a great show, but she is great in it. And I like that, for the most part, Annalise is a character that could have been played by an actress of really any race (though no one would be the Annalise we love). That is what equality looks like to me.

    • godizus

      I agree. She’s a black woman playing a role that didn’t have to be a black woman – and elevating it. In part because BLACK WOMAN.

      • Sigma_Since 93

        That scene with taking the make-up and wig off would not have been as powerful if a white woman did it.

        • Epsilonicus

          No where near as powerful.

        • godizus

          And the episode with Cicely Tyson combing her hair

          • Sigma_Since 93

            Paying homage to the GOAT

        • laddibugg

          …that’s why I said, “for the most part”.

    • My wife loves the show but I loathe every single character.

      • LehcarB

        Annalise is the only one with more than one dimension. You really have no sympathy for the others

        • LMNOP

          Most of them are also some really irritating and unlikeable characters.

          But that scene with Annalise’s mom combing her hair and talking about killing the uncle who molested her was my all time favorite 5 minutes of TV last year.

          • QuirlyGirly

            Yes!!

            Cicily Tyson came through and said “Sometimes you do what you gotta do, even if you only got a long match and a very flamable hootch.”

            She said it so plainly, so honest. If was like her saying “Yes baby, I knowd what he did and I took care of him for you.”

            Loved It!

            • Epsilonicus

              Thats the thing. The show can be messy, but when it has powerful moments, they are POWERFUL.

            • miss t-lee

              Yup. Mama handled that.

          • LehcarB

            When Rebecca died it was literally a sigh of relief.

            • Jennifer

              Girl! I might have yelled “hallelu!” when her death was revealed.

            • Manny

              I hated Rebecca and the way Wes was wirh her the ENTIRE time.

              • Jennifer

                The cape was strong with that one.

            • GirlMelanie86

              I hated Rebecca because she was so irritating and smart mouthed, and with her and Wes there was NO REASON for him to cape so hard for her- like he met her and instantly started protecting her. I was happy to see her go too.

        • JamesInstagram

          That might be why the show is a challenge for me. Each character has some dimension to them, but none worth caring about, compared to Keating.

      • miss t-lee

        You’re supposed to. They’re all terrible people.

        • I get that but they aren’t even interesting terrible people. Just regular terrible.

          • miss t-lee

            Indeed.

    • PunchDrunkLove

      I stopped watching……just too much for me on a Thursday….lol I agree though, she is fantabulous…..she’s a dern good actress.

      • laddibugg

        Yeah, I tried to do Grey’s–>Scandal—>HTGAWM all on Thursday, and it was too much. I usually watch Scandal live, and the other two over the weekend.

        • PunchDrunkLove

          I only do Scandal. Grey’s went out the window for me when they started doing creative writing.

          • Val

            I haven’t seen more than 5 minutes of any of Shonda’s shows. They just don’t hold my interest. Also, I long to see Black couples on TV and in her shows Black folks are always paired with White folks.

            • PunchDrunkLove

              The storylines aren’t really deep, but I try to hang in there to support my people :) Give Scandal another shot…..maybe? The season premiere is Thursday 9:00 p.m.

              • Val

                Lol Maybe.

    • TeeChantel

      TBH, I watched the show for Viola. She is such a phenomenal actress.

      • HeyBooHey

        I tried to get into it, especially cuz my 61yr old auntie swears it’s “bomb”. Viola sold me on her character but the show itself jumped around too much to hold me past the pilot.

        • TeeChantel

          It really did jump around a lot. I’m happy I stuck with it though…I could’t keep up with Scandal.

          • Manny

            The demise of Scandal breaks my heart.

          • GirlMelanie86

            I’ve actually been still good money with Scandal but I stopped watching HTGAWM for the same reason, and I watched the finale to catch up a little bit. Kinda terrible show but Viola is outstanding in it.

  • Viola Davis’s speech was everything! It was the perfect set of words to start off this week.

    Oh, and Nancy Lou Who can go jump into Lake White Tears.

  • Epsilonicus

    I watched the speech this morning and may have shed a tear at my desk. It was so succinct yet powerful. It said everything. I also loved how Taraji was so overjoyed for her. That love right there was authentic.

    • Sigma_Since 93

      “That love right there was authentic.”

      As much as the industry creates a hostile environment, I love how our women have always been united. It reminded me of how Halle’s win was a win for all sistas.

      • KMN

        Meh…I might be by myself but I NEVER considered Halle’s win a win for us…I mean congrats and ish…but the role that she had to do in order to get it…(Denzel’s also)….I’ve never been that happy about that. But that’s just me…

        • Cleojonz

          No, you are not alone in that. I felt some type of way that THAT was the role they chose to recognize. Especially when really she is a terrible actress.

          • KMN

            “Especially when really she is a terrible actress.”
            ~drops mic~

            • laddibugg

              She’s not the WORST ever, but she really isn’t great. She has no real range.
              Now I did just finish watching the full run of Extant, her show on CBS, and while I liked it, she *was* one of the weaker links.

              • KMN

                I’ve never seen that show…Hell I’ve never heard of that show lmao…but I believe it…she just got lucky IMO…

                • Cleojonz

                  There certainly is a right time right place element to any awards given. Look at Jon Hamm. He could finally prosper because 1. The Emmy’s love to award last seasons and B. There was no more Walter White for him to go up against.

              • Cleojonz

                She is the reason why I could not make myself watch that show. The premise seems really interesting but I just couldn’t see her pulling it off.

              • sharitaatx

                I watched season 1 and I too thought her acting was flat. For it to be a SciFi futuristic show she could have done a lot more. I found myself yelling at how many bad decisions were being made.They have a season 2 on Amazon Prime but I taking my time getting to it because her acting could be better in a show that is centered around her.

            • LadyIbaka

              Lol, tell us how you really feel KMN.

              • KMN

                LMAO I’m just saying…every broke clock is right twice a day lol….she had her moments but for the most part…meh. I mean Catwoman? Queen (yeah I LOATHED her in queen miss I’se a negra rofl girl gone). I’m done now lolol

                • blogdiz

                  Yep Her acting and accent in Queen and Monsters Ball made me cringe, had to actually look away from the screen due to second hand embarrassment
                  In Boomerang/Dorothy Dandridge she was basically playing herself

                  • KMN

                    seriously…I can’t even remember her in boomerang…and I agree with the DD movie…she was playing herself…

        • I’ll disagree with Denzel because Training Day was probably the most compelling villain I’ve ever seen in a movie. He wasn’t a bad guy as much as a bad PERSON, who was fully fleshed out. Also, he got Tom Cruise in such a panic that he went out and did Collateral… And got Jamie Foxx an Oscar. No matter how you slice it, it’s a win.

          • Epsilonicus

            “I’ll disagree with Denzel because Training Day was probably the most compelling villain I’ve ever seen in a movie.”

            Agreed.

          • Sigma_Since 93

            The issue here is range. Tom is showing his range by being a villain…Denzel…well let’s make him the face of crooked cops and have the White guy stand up for truth and justice.

            • Epsilonicus

              But pre-Training Day I had never seen Denzel as an out and out bad guy. I was nervous he might not pull it off.

              • Sigma_Since 93

                He wasn’t a nice guy in A Soldier’s Story but that took place waaay before he got his movie mojo going.

                • He really wasn’t a nice guy in Glory or Philadelphia either but he exhibited affable traits by the end of the films.

                  • Sigma_Since 93

                    He was the killer in A Soldier’s Story.

                    • Oh, I know but I don’t know if killing MSgt Waters was such a bad thing.

                    • Sigma_Since 93

                      It wasn’t LOL! Shug Avery pee would have offed him faster.

                    • brothaskeeper

                      The day of the Geechie was over….

            • “Denzel…well let’s make him the face of crooked cops ”

              For some the face of crooked cops is a black one.

            • I don’t see how it’s an issue of range. This was the first time Denzel played a bad guy, and perhaps the only one if you don’t count American Gangster, since it’s a biopic. That’s part of what made it compelling going in. Plus, it’s not that Black and white a situation between good and evil. It isn’t obvious who is good or bad until the last 20 minutes of the movie.

          • It’s sad that black art has to encompass every part of our experience in every role. It doesn’t allow for range for black actors and actresses.

            It’s like when Viola and Octavia set Tavis Smiley after “The Help” .

            • KMN

              I can get down with this…I don’t like Halle…she just IMO can’t act…but it’s how they waited so long to give them awards…I thought she was pretty good in Raising Isaiah…and Denzel DEFINITELY should’ve won for Malcolm X…

              I agree we need to be diverse…but damn did the first one have to be for “make me feel good?”

              • st george doesnt exist

                I just pretend she got for Dorothy Dandridge. Now that was a good movie..

            • RewindingtonMaximus

              Morgan Freeman had to portray a pimp to get his first Oscar nomination.

              Didn’t stop him from being one of the best actors of all time. Facts are facts, feelings aren’t. You don’t know the overall reach of an action just because you’re looking at it from the temporary standpoint.

              • QuirlyGirly

                “You don’t know the overall reach of an action just because you’re looking at it from the temporary standpoint.”

                #TRUTH

              • LuckBALady

                That was his first nomination. He won for Million Dollar Baby.

          • KMN

            OK I’ll give you that (it’s sad I still haven’t seen Training Day)…but like Cleojonz said…Denzel can ACT…Halle…well…:-|

            • Go see it. The great part of the movie is how non-obvious who everyone is until the final act. He won that Oscar fair and square.

              • KMN

                I will…I might holla at that this weekend when the kid is sleep

            • Andie

              I haven’t either!!! I think I am going to watch that today.

            • Siante

              Halle’s definitely not the world’s best actress, but she has a vulnerability that makes her relatable.

          • Sigma_Since 93

            Second time. A Soldier’s Story was the first time.

            • Thaymay

              Actually, he won the 1st one for Glory. That single tear as he was getting whipped locked up that trophy.

              • Sigma_Since 93

                We were talking about roles where Denzel was a bad guy. He was an azz in Glory but not a bad guy..On second thought, he wasn’t an azz; he just wasn’t drinking the “things will be better Kool Aid”

          • Its honestly what Will needs to do if he ever wants that Oscar

            • #facts And even more so since he hasn’t had the complicated characters Denzel has had over the years.

            • JamesInstagram

              There’s something very perplexing about the thought that black A-list actors like Washington or Smith would have to play a complex, villanous character in order to win an Oscar. But for a white actor like Leonardo Dicaprio, the thinking is the opposite.
              http://thedissolve.com/features/honorable-mentions/350-for-leonardo-dicaprio-always-a-golden-globe-never-/

              • Val

                I think they just like to move the goal posts when it comes to us being acknowledged.

                • JamesInstagram

                  YUP! My middle school math teacher — a Native American — taught me that. He used to say that the rules of the game change when you start winning.

          • blogdiz

            Yep i I hate when People put Training Day and Monsters Ball in the same category.For one Denzil can act and has proved himself ten times over/
            Also Before Training Day , Denzil was caught up in the Sydney Poiter play book of “credit to my race ” good guy roles. His character in Training Day was complex , villainous and well played, he deserved that Oscar its just that he could have easily won for Philadelphia and Malcolm X as well

        • PunchDrunkLove

          “…..but the role that she had to do in order to get it.”

          Exactly

        • menajeanmaehightower

          I think your feelings may have to do more with the way Halle has been accepted by whites because she fits the acceptable black woman. Halle can act (she did great in Queen and Dorthy Dandridge). It’s different seeing someone win where she played a woman on tv whose mama greased her scalp while they had a come to Jesus moment. Viola’s win just felt more powerful. It felt like we could all be accepted and not just some stereotype of how acceptable black women should look (light and right). I feel the same for Kerry and Tariji too. They are encapsulating all of the sisters out there not just the ones that whites are comfortable with accepting.

          Not knocking your comment or Halle by any means but feel that there is more to it than just her win and the role she played.

          • KMN

            I agree with what you said for some people…But I very rarely enjoy anything that she’s in…she’s over acting or underacting IMO…now she’s had her moments…but I just think she’s not that great of an actress…but I respect what you said :)

            • RewindingtonMaximus

              You remember the phrase Good, Better, Best, from the Bearenstien Bears Books?

              Halle was Good. Viola is Better. Now sit back and wait for the Best to show up.

              Everything has to start SOMEWHERE.

          • menajeanmaehightower

            Also, accepted isn’t correct. I should have said “it felt like we could all just EXIST…”

          • Sigma_Since 93

            +1

            She played the heck outta that crack head in Jungle Fever and the rachet role in BAPS. I couldn’t see Gabby, Viola, or Lynn doing BAPS.

            • MsSula

              BAPS is physical comedy and that’s a real skill to have.

              • TeeChantel

                I recall her catching a lot of flack for BAPS though.

          • Jennifer

            Viola’s win feels powerful now, but Halle’s win had me crying at a Jamaican resort in 2002. Yeah, I remember where I was and what sarong I was wearing. I did not like “Monster’s Ball” but it was a big moment for Hollywood at a time when big moments happened more sporadically (they’re still too sporadic, IMO). I’ll never discount her win. In that moment, regardless of her acceptance by White Hollywood, she still invoked the names of the black actresses that came before her and her contemporaries who were unsung at that time. That was sincere.

            • menajeanmaehightower

              I’m definitely not going to knock Halle’s win. Personally, she can act. However, I believe that some aren’t too keen on her specifically for the reason I mentioned above. Others just really don’t like her acting.

              • Jennifer

                Noted.

              • brothaskeeper

                Her best role was in “Boomerang”…

          • Val

            First, Hiya, Mena.

            *waves*

            And, meh, just because you say it with conviction doesn’t make it true.Lol Halle is a mediocre actress, well except when she’s playing a crackhead. She’s good at that.

            • menajeanmaehightower

              Why are you so salty today? LOL

              Hey girl! How is Cali treating you?

              • Val

                Lol Me salty?

                We need rain! Other than that I’m good. I hope you’re enjoying your pre-fall.

          • JamesInstagram

            My mother grew up at a time where a dark-skinned black woman could not been seen in public with her natural hair, red lipstick and a white dress. Viola did all of that, while accepting her award, and rattled off a Harriet Tubman about.

            • Simone-Elise Charles

              All the truths in that statement.

      • PunchDrunkLove

        Except for Gabrielle Union. She’s not down for other black women. She admitted herself in an interview with Phylicia Rashad, Viola Davis (and someone else….can’t remember), how bitter she was when Kerry Washington beat her out for Olivia Pope. This particular sit down/black woman chat and her admittance that she was pretty much a hater was a display of redemption (I guess) for her, that she can be happy for other folks and bask in their sunshine…..so she said.

        Plus she’s a thief….she steal husbands

        • “Plus she’s a thief….she steal husbands”

          As foul as it is you can’t steal anyone who wants to be taken.

          • PunchDrunkLove

            Yep, I agree.

            • Gabby is an admitted mean girl right? Dwyane also is culpable in his marriage’s demise too. Yes, his ex may be nutty but he played a hand in some of it. Not all but some.

              • Yeah. During that OWN chat with Phylicia Rashad nem, Gabby talked about how she was pretty much a hateful wench. Her girl, AJ, (is that her name? The one from House Party?) had to be like, What is wrong with you? before she finally got her act together.

                • AJ Johnshon. aka Jody’s mama.

                  • Yes! AJ Johnson. Thank you!

                • RewindingtonMaximus

                  The aura I get from her is Black people treated her like s h i t from her childhood, so she just grew up not liking Black people all that much, but knowing she had to deal with them.

                  I totally relate to that

                  • Val

                    She was raped when she was young. I think that may have shaped her overall attitude toward people.

                    • RewindingtonMaximus

                      Ahh, that explains some of it then. And I have an idea of how that warps everything.

                  • blogdiz

                    White Kids are mean and sh1tty to each other ALL the time, how many of them grow up to hate white people ?
                    Being a bitch or a sh1tty person is apart of the human condition they exist in all races not everyone is a result of black people dun me wrong syndrome

                    • RewindingtonMaximus

                      As an adult, I’m sure you think that makes sense, but if you understand how the mind of a child works, you’d understand, none of that is actually true.

                      Everything that happens to a kid is the entire world to them, because they have no frame of reference. Now if a white kid gets harassed for a long time by other white kids, that sucks, but in the end, that kid is part of the majority, and is taught that his group, while it can be troublesome, isn’t out to destroy him because of how he looks. So he can move ahead.

                      Try saying that s h i t about any other racial group in America. I mean it…try doing that. You know it wouldn’t be true.

                      And yes, not everyone holds on to the self hate scenario, but everyone has a story, and those stories are the key to why some problems last longer for some people as opposed to others. You can’t just dismiss it just because it doesn’t sound like it makes sense.

                    • blogdiz

                      That may be be so but it cant always be the the go to defense for everything
                      Gabby grew up middle class went to predominantly white schools , always had black friends boyfriends .She gives off a more spoiled princess mean girl competitive vibe (which isn’t peculiar to race )
                      Sometime we get so caught up in attributing negative behaviors to race , we forget we are human

                    • PunchDrunkLove

                      “Gabby grew up middle class went to predominantly white schools , always had black friends boyfriends .She gives off a more spoiled princess mean girl competitive vibe (which isn’t peculiar to race )”

                      This ret here….no excuses for trashy behavior.

                    • blogdiz

                      Dont get me wrong I actually dont Mind Gabby and great for her if she has grown.I just really have a problem with the premise that all our human flaws are a result of other mean black people.

                  • My understanding is that she grew up in some pretty white a s s towns (first in Omaha then in the Bay area).

                    It might have been that OWN interview or another where she talked about always liking Black guys and them being a rarity where she grew up. It wouldn’t surprise me that Gabby felt some competition toward other Black girls because they were so few in these lily white places. Like, I feel like that’s where some of the mean girl stuff came into play. Her girls now are Black, so clearly she managed to work through it in some capacity.

                    • RewindingtonMaximus

                      I’m also sure once she emerged from these areas and tried to link up with other black women, she was not always positively received, especially if she talked differently than others, may have been smarter, etc.

                      That just creates a breeding ground for resentment, but at 40+ she better have it together, I’m sure she does not plan to live the rest of her life angry, so its good she found closure.

                    • JamesInstagram

                      We’re also forgetting some crucial information in our speculation: Gabrielle Union was the victim of rape at a very young age. The assailant was someone who broke into her part-time job and raped her in the back room. She was very open about this in a PBS segment, “Half The Sky.”

                      Rape victims often carry a lot of self-loathing. And that can manifest itself in anger toward others.

                  • JamesInstagram

                    Not so sure. She plays Mary Jane Paul like someone with real compassion for her character and her community. Instead, I think Gabrielle Union comes off like someone not looking for white approval or black approval. You can do both. You can be deeply rooted in pride for being who you are without feeling beholden to anyone else’s standards of acceptance.

                • Question

                  But she’s being honest about it? I’m not arguing that anyone like Gabrielle Union, because I don’t care for her breed of acting, but I don’t get why people are holding her honesty AND her personal evolution against her.

                  Lets be real about Hollywood…when Hollywood writes roles for Black women, they overwhelmingly write them with a specific person in mind. Gabrielle is breaking her neck with her b-list acting skills to have her name be included in that consideration set. That’s hard.

                  • I do actually like Gabrielle Union.* I’m just talking about how she describes the kind of person she was for a long long time–one who would tear down other women at parties, etc. because she was lacking something in her own life.

                    *I admit that the Gabby I liked was the one who I knew very little about until maybe a few years ago.

                    • Question

                      I don’t like or dislike her. I just think its interesting that folks are mad at her for being real about what she’s feeling. But we’re mad at Gabby for admitting that she had to be checked, check her own attitude and feelings and grow as a human being?

                      I dunno…

                    • QuirlyGirly

                      It seems to me like she is always talking about how she used to be, not how she has grown in to a better person.
                      It would also be nice to see her support the other black woman. I don’t see that from her too much.

                    • Question

                      Or it could be that because she was open about her past thought processes, its all people seem to want to ask her about.

                      That said, Gabby does strike me as someone who isn’t supportive of other women.

                    • QuirlyGirly

                      True true

                      I like Gabby for the most part. I would love to see her support other black women because a strong network of women is a benefit to all.

                    • JamesInstagram

                      It would be nice if Kanye West and Terrence Howard sought a psychiatrist and were prescribed regular meds.

                      It would be nice if Zoe Saldana didn’t agree to play Nina Simone.

                      It would be nice if Angela Bassett was at least considered for the part of Storm instead of Halle Berry.

                      We can’t always get what we want.

                    • Epsilonicus

                      Or she could be supportive but it is behind the scenes. I know when people help me, I hate when they make it a huge public spectacle.

                    • Amber

                      Right. Viola could’ve been thinking thanks and girl sit down and let me have my moment lol

                    • Simone_was_taken

                      Exactly.. To me it doesn’t come from a sincere place if you need too.

                    • PunchDrunkLove

                      Terrence had me questioning his mental state when he did the season finale of LL’s lip sync show. He was dressed like Rick James, gut showing, and yelling b!tch as if he had turrets, and singing a song by a different artist. Mary J. was there to support Taraji but she moving away from him like he had a plague or something.

                    • Kema

                      Never thought of Angela Bassett as Storm. That would have been interesting!

                    • dmcmillian72

                      “It would be nice if Angela Bassett was at least considered for the part of Storm instead of Halle Berry.”

                      Wouldn’t this be the most awesome-est thing EVER?!?!!!!!

                    • GirlMelanie86

                      I like Gabby. She did say she was a “mean girl” but she also said in that same speech that she’s changed now because she knew she was hella wrong. I’ve heard her talk about it only a couple times.

                    • PunchDrunkLove

                      I don’t think anyone is mad, certainly not I. I’m none the better or worse for MENTIONING her. Having said that, don’t folks get discussed all the time here for their behavior? Why or when did that become a bad thing? She said, she admitted to it, she said she was shallow and bitter. She don’t get no cookies for saying she needs to do better.

                    • Question

                      “Mad” was used loosely. Ain’t nobody on either side of the table losing sleep over Gabby Union.

                • JamesInstagram

                  A.J. Johnson! That’s the one! I imagined it was Regina King, because homegirl gets down like that.

              • PunchDrunkLove

                That goes without saying. Dwayne and his wife are responsible for the demise of their marriage. I can’t find an appreciation for making that chick look crazy. I’m sure they had issues, but squeezing her out from her kids, trading up? Nothing right about that. I’m not sure of the timeline, but Gabrielle was in the pic. I won’t call his wife all kinds of nutty because I’m sure it was heartbreaking. I empathize with her. He took his money and bought the best legal service and got rid of her. So nope, Gabby ain’t crapness for sitting by and watching that entire scene play out plummets her character, in my view.

          • Epsilonicus

            Exactly. If she got him, it is because he chose to leave.

          • Spouses don’t play defense.

        • Jocelyn

          I saw that show. Gabrielle embarrassed herself. Her current role on “Being Mary Jane” is the only reason Viola threw her in as an afterthought. But still, Viola’s speech had me in my feelings and the hug that she and Taraji shared was on that Nettie/Celie level.

          • PunchDrunkLove

            This! I thought the same thing when I heard Gabrielle’s name thrown in. Me too, I love that she knows given the opportunities, there’s enough shine for all black women. She was great in that interview.

        • Val

          I didn’t know Halle was up for Olivia Pope. She would have been perfect. She wouldn’t have had to act. Lol

          • Not Halle, Gabby was. Then she made Mary Jane because damn if she will not get to be a sidejawn on tv

          • PunchDrunkLove

            LOLOL…True, Halle being perfect for the role. Actually, it was Gabrielle that auditioned and didn’t get it.

          • LadyIbaka

            Hehee!! Stop it, Val!!

        • Damon Young

          “Except for Gabrielle Union. She’s not down for other black women. She admitted herself in an interview with Phylicia Rashad, Viola Davis (and someone else….can’t remember), how bitter she was when Kerry Washington beat her out for Olivia Pope. This particular sit down/black woman chat and her admittance that she was pretty much a hater. ”

          I actually don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. It’s great to be gracious and supportive if a peer is chosen instead of you, but it’s also very human to be salty about too.

          • PunchDrunkLove

            It’s human to be salty….true.

          • JamesInstagram

            After all, we are 90% salt water.

          • Cleojonz

            I agree with this. I don’t see anything wrong actually expressing you are disappointed. Why would you not be if you feel like you deserve an accolade as much as the next person.

            • PunchDrunkLove

              Why would you take a jab if you didn’t get it? That’s par for the course with anything. It’s not specific to acting.
              I was in the top four for a position a few months back, but this woman I’ve chatted with a few times got the position. Why would I hate on her for edging me out? That doesn’t mean I’m not good, that doesn’t mean she’s better, that means she had all or more of what they wanted than I did. I’m still good, she’s good and we’re good. I speak and we have casual convo in passing. No need to hate tho.

              • Cleojonz

                My comment isn’t in defense of Gabby at all. I just hate the idea that we are supposed to be so gracious all the time and never let it be seen that you actually are hurt or disappointed that you didn’t win or missed out on an opportunity. Trying to tear someone down because you didn’t prosper though? No, I don’t condone that.

              • LadyIbaka

                I love your take on corporate Amerrucah. Love how you handle yourself, #class.

                • PunchDrunkLove

                  Thanks!

        • Question

          But isn’t her response a natural one – considering how few roles there are for Black women in the first place? I feel like sometimes we beat people down for being honest.

          • PunchDrunkLove

            Taking shots at another sister (an admission out of her own mouth) for beating you out is not natural. Emotional, but not natural.

            • Question

              Agreed.

        • JamesInstagram

          Maybe I’m still a little naive about this. I thought she and Wade were dating right after he left his wife, and they were going through that ugly custody battle. I remember news about Wade saying his now-ex-wife was basically holding the kids hostage, and he had to file a restraining order on her. Then I read about he and Gabrielle Union dating. Again, I could not have the timeline right.

          I saw that interview you mentioned. Another black actress (I’ll imagine it was Regina King) gathered her and said, “How does wanting another black actress to lose make your life better? Is there more money in your account? Is your house better?” I think Union has sufficiently acknowledged how unproductive her bitterness was. Knowing that, I can at least enjoy “Being Mary Jane” with some assurance.

          • PunchDrunkLove

            I could be off as to when they hooked up, I admit that. I’m just not feeling that whole scene.
            As far as the interview goes, it wasn’t Regina King, it was the chick, her coworker that’s BMJ with her. There was some other “iconic” actress….I think. My recollection may be off a bit.
            My point was as Viola displayed such grace by wanting all black women to get their shine on, and not overlooked, someone commenting that that’s how all the sisters are…..embracing one another, um I was just saying not Gabby. She gets no chill because she’s been in the business long enough to know FOR HOLLYWOOD, there’s usually a shelf life (which ain’t right), that the discrimination and needing work is just as real for the next black woman, that if Hollywood is hating on black women and RATIONING out jobs we don’t need all that extra (i.e. hate), lastly she ain’t no spring chicken…..she’s too old for that kind of behavior. She knows better.

      • blogdiz

        I too am basking in the glow of Violas win and the support from her peeps but at risk of messing up this vibe , I just cant let it slide Nope Halles p0rno win was not a win for all sistas.

    • TeeChantel

      When they moved the camera over to Kerri Washington I let out a big yell. There was a beautiful moment between Viola, Taraji and Keri – the white folks didn’t get it (I noticed some of the blank stares in the background) – but yeah, we felt it.

    • st george doesnt exist

      i love how she named everyone who is doing the non typical things right now. Even nicole beharie got love in it( with her fine self, but her show eh.. not so good)

      • RewindingtonMaximus

        Aye..Sleep Hollow fell off but she got to be a Black female lead on a adventure/sci-fi series.

        Now all of a sudden Megan Good gets to be on Minority Report.

        Always respect the leader so you can watch the followers.

        • JamesInstagram

          And she was also in “American Crime,” a movie I think is a great companion to “Fruitvale Station.”

      • I like Sleepy Hollow but it started dragging when it stopped being about Abbie and Ichabod. All of the extra characters have tied the show down a bit.

        • Illumina

          There supposed to be going back to more of the Seaon 1 formula. We’ll see.

          I went to the Sleepy Hollow panel at DragonCon and both Tom Mison and Nicole Beharie were there. They really seem to get along off-stage. They kept complimenting each other’s talents and such.

          • st george doesnt exist

            i hope so. I just wanted a simple freak of the week with a loose over arching story. I say they should treat it more like the super hero shows, than whatever season 2 was. I am going to finish the rest of season 1 since it was short. I think they need to shorten down to 15 and get that crazy flow that the first 5 episodes of season one.

      • Manny

        Please give it a chance. The mistake 2nd season was her not gettibg screen time and them focusing on he Cranes. The witch is dead now. There’s hope

  • Sigma_Since 93

    I’m actually surprised that you hadn’t written about how Matt Damon dismissed Effie Brown’s concerns about diversity on a project. MHP said something during her show that resonated with me. White folk continue to marginalize our success by saying “that’s a black film” and not truly realizing that a good script + good actors = dollars and it can be done with Black people as the lead.

    It’s all a history lesson about the struggle of Black actors that many don’t want to hear. I’m happy that folks are writing good product and we are getting a chance to truly show what we can do. Kerry’s been killing it, Don’s been killing it, Idris’ been killing it. Hoping the trend continues.

    • I watched “Fury” this weekend and thought this could have easily been four black dudes in this tank and the movie would have been the same but Hollywood doesn’t see that. It would have been a “black war movie”.

    • Especially today when black people are probably at its most diverse as far as culture and interests. Black kids today like anime, comics, and edm as much as we grew up with hip hop and basketball.

    • facts!

  • TeeChantel

    I didn’t watch the Emmy’s last night but now I really wish I had. I watched this morning and I broke down at my desk. Her speech, her skin, her hair, her lipstick, the moment…. simply incredible. What an incredible moment for us all. I won’t even comment on Nancy Lee Graham’s tweets because she is irrelevant to me.

  • I’m sorry but I’m just here for the Nancy Lee Grahn shade. For one, her mere existence is the reason why my last name gets misspelled like hers. My last name is in ever supermarket in America, but nope… It’s spelled Grahn according to some people. LOL

    Two, the black twitter dragging was classic. Like I swear she was paid to do this. No one can be this sincere and this dumb at the same time.

    Thanks for the moment Viola

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