Black women have been relegated to supporting roles in the current Black-ish season 2, but the cast and crew of the ABC show are making sure the series isn’t just about them.
“We’re doing our best to get this show to be about black women and black women as a group,” said Black women producer JoAnne Walters.
“When you talk about our experience of being treated with suspicion, our experiences of discrimination, our lives of being the least desirable among men, we’re all so incredibly proud of the work that Black women do on television.”
Walters says the show’s diverse cast includes the character Black-Girl, a character whose backstory is so convoluted and complicated that the show has to delve into the origins of the character and explain why she’s so attractive.
Walters and co-creator Alex Gansa have tried to tackle the complexities of Black women in the past, but in a way that doesn’t just blame Black women for their own mistreatment.
They’ve also tackled the legacy of slavery and the legacy that Black people have endured in the US.
“The Black-American experience is one that is so underappreciated and underrepresented,” Walters said.
“Black women have always been in the background.
And Black women aren’t in the foreground.”
And so, for Black women, the show wants to be more than a representation of Black people.
“It’s an opportunity for Black people to be part of the conversation,” Walters added.
“That’s what we really want to do with this show.
We want to make Black people aware of the fact that they’re part of a diverse community.
And to be a part of that conversation.”