Sunday, May 17, 2009

Your Game Commentary


The other night my parents and I were watching television together when a commercial came on advertising the new season of Meet The Browns. Innocently enough, foolishly, I made the remark I thought neither it nor the show that spawned Browns, House of Payne, were all that funny. Simple enough statement right? Wrong. Oh Lawd! My parents done gon' on a trip, and got defensive! And real quick.

"Why because it's BLACK?"

Huh? What? Umm, nooooooo. What does that have to do with the price of oil in Saudi Arabia?

Skipping over the conflicted race messages in my family, save that for another post, I just don't find either House of Payne or Meet The Browns humorous. They're cheap imitations of comedy entertainment, based on a "Three's Company"-esque style, watered down and spoon fed to the African American community. Love it or leave it. Leave it! I've never found stupid sitcoms particularly entertaining. I don't care both ventures are backed by Tyler Perry. For the same argument folk have over the Madea movies, I have for black television programming today. It's same old, stereotypical, tired gags, line, and routine reminiscent of Stepin Fetchit. Harsh opinion, but so true.

Maybe it's just me? But is it wrong to want, to hold, to demand, our shows in be held in a higher calibre similar to mainstream media and programming. Why do we have to look like the bottom of the heap? Where is our Black Grey's Anatomy? Our Black CSI? Our Black Law & Order, 24, House, etc. etc? Why is it black entertainment is confined to the same old sitcoms, different names, but same situations and lame ass gags? Really, I wanna know. And I won't throw in the subject of Reality TV. That old mess is just plantation mentally in it's most ignorant, purest form. Hint Holllyweird, 1865 has come and gone! Let my people go!

What few shows are on-air seem portray the worst of the black community. I'll pick on a show I do enjoy, which I still think is the same tired shiggety dressed up for a new generation, the CW Network's The Game.

Do I need to rehash it for you why it's so tired? Address the problems with the CW Network? Then again, while I wanna complain, if it weren't for the CW (née The WB Network) I doubt mainstream television would have regular black programming. No other network has made an effort to produce shows for African Americans. But even still, CW?!?! What up with you? The Girlfriend's spin-off leaves me with a sour taste in my mouth. Is this the best television the-Powers-that-be, have to supply black audiences?

Synopsis of every episode of The Game, without knowing the individual storylines.... biracial "black" man athlete (don't hate, I loves me some Coby), of course married to a white woman, cheap, bitter, and angry. There divaesque single mother ghetto girl tryin' to get hers and prove something to somebody. Her immature, spoiled, pampered "playa" son who reinforces every single misogynistic attitude Black men are accused of having...money hungry, no sense of morality, decency, irreverence, lack of common sense...and last, but certainly not least, the Christian boy, trying to be all grow'd up, trying to keep up with his boys, frontin', who can't keep it in his pants long enough to know a good thing when he's got, only in the end to get another woman pregnant....yadda, yadda, yadda.{Thank you Jerry Seinfeld for that lexicon added to our language}. Need I go on?

Ugh.

Make no mistake, I tune into The Game regularly. I was rooting for Jason and Kelly to get back together, stupid as I think they are together, I want Tasha to make her impact, do her thang, want Malik to become a real man and leggo his tired ways, want Derwin and Melanie to get their shit straight for reals this time....

Yeah, OK.
I watch. Sue me, but it still doesn't invalidate my argument. If you hungry, but hate liverwurst sandwiches, but you ain't ate fo' six months, are you honestly gonna turn down that liverwurst? Honestly? Use the analogy with Black television. If what's current broadcast, all that's on the table, what choices do we have unless we demand for better...

-Ian

6 comments:

thegayte-keeper said...

I couldn't bring myself to watch House of Pain or Meet The Browns...I think they are okay for persons that are my parents age

H2B said...

I don't use Ms Perry's sitcoms but did watch "the game" for the eyecandy. but you mention Law and Order and the current longest running actor on TV is the captain which should be applauded I would say this franchise has done much to further careers of African American actors. sadly we as a people love buffoonery

J. Clarence said...

Great piece.

I've only caught one episode of The Game and it was when I was just flipping through channels and saw it BET.

I do think there is a crisis in African-American TV programming. I can see some value in the Madea plays; however, the television spin-offs are just horrible. It's like the lowest form of comedy, and I don't think African-Americans have to settle for it.

Wonder Man said...

we don't have much and it's sad to think about. And I have issues with CW, especially the way they treated Girlfriends

Corey said...

Concerning the painful to watch House Of Payne & Meet The Brown's, Ian said ...

"For the same argument folk have over the Madea movies, I have for black television programming today. It's same old, stereotypical, tired gags, line, and routine reminiscent of Stepin Fetchit."

I couldn't have said it better than that! And the reason is BECAUSE of Perry's involvement. On one hand, he's to be admired for overcoming adversity (and providing employment to talented black actresses that everyone else ignores) but the man is a RELENTLESS PIMP!

Ironic that you mentioned Seinfeld.
Now THAT was a show ! ! ! And MOST black folks HATED it! Where's our Seinfeld?

Ian a.k.a. Darktomahawk said...

Why do all GBM seemingly hate Tyler Perry? I'm not accusing, but that much seems evident. Is it because he's supposedly "closeted?" And I see it more and more with each film, but I really don't care if he's gay or not, just keep showcasing the handsome Black Brothers he's been filming in his movies.

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