The TV MegaSite's Blog Post #195

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The TV MegaSite's Blog Post #195

MLK on TVI hope you all had a great Martin Luther King Jr. Day this week! It's interesting that, right now, when it comes to African-Americans, movies and TV are very different. TV is now pretty dominated by African-Americans (especially women). Most TV shows nowadays are multi-racial ensembles, and there are quite a few shows featuring African-American women like never before, such as "Scandal," "How to Get Away with Murder," and several others like "Sleepy Hollow" and of course, "Empire," which not only has a mostly-black cast but is a big hit. I think we will be seeing more shows like that, now that TV is more confident about African-American shows. Why it took them so long, I have no idea! I guess conventional wisdom was that shows starring African-Americans,Empire stars Henson and Howard especially males, didn't do well in the ratings.


Anyway, there's a big controversy right now about how African-Americans have not gotten many Oscar nominations in the past few years. Really, this has been true since the Oscars started, but now that we're all more modern, and we all think, "Surely we can all agree that most of us are no longer racist," and several African-Americans have won or been nominated for Oscars, as well as cast in highly-rated movies, we all expect Lupita Nyong'o won the Oscar in 2014that more African-Americans should get Oscars. (My, that was a long sentence! Forgive me...)

The problem is, from what I've read, that those who vote on the Oscars are members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, and 96% of those are white. Apparently you have to be invited in after being nominated by two other members, to join, so most white people just pick their friends, or other white people they admire. Members join for life, so you have a lot of older people in the group who may not be as comfortable with people of color (and films about them). Since rich people live longer than non-rich people, theGotham's Jada Pinkett Smith asks for the boycott top actors probably live a lot longer than the rest of us, so they stay around in the Academy, voting for other white people, for a long time. Then on top of that, you have the issue of how many black films are actually made, and how many African-American writers, directors, actors etc. are hired in the film community. There may be some racism there. I can't say for sure, but it wouldn't surprise me. Heck, if women were not given separate categories at the Oscars, I'm fairly sure we wouldn't be represented, either.

So a lot of the African-American artists, like Will and Jada Pinkett Smith, and Spike Lee, are calling for others to boycott the Oscars. I don't know if that will do any good or Michael B. Jordan should have been nominated for "Creed"not. I can certainly understand their frustration. The fact is, the world is racist. I can certainly see why rich, successful African-Americans want to get the same accolades as their white counterparts.  Anyone would.


Fortunately,, TV has a lot more diversity than movies. Now, there are not a lot of African-Americans who win Emmys every year, but at least they are nominated. You can see a good list here.

I hope that both TV and movies also start being a little better about including other minorities, such as Asians, Latinos and Indians. We do see many more ofAmerica Ferrara starred in Ugly Betty these groups represented on TV (not so sure about movies).   I think that a lot of them are seen in comedies as stereotypes, but I guess they often do that to anyone in TV. Personally, I can't stand watching "Fresh Off the Boat," or "Dr. Ken," not just because they're stereotypes but bad comedies. You so rarely see a good show like "Ugly Betty" that just has minorties playing regular people in a comedy setting.  Women, either, for that matter. We still have very few shows that have two women or where the women act normal, like the men do. That's one reason I love "Rizzoli & Isles," because it's one of the few cop shows with two women as the leads.

Have a great weekend! Don't forget to check out this week's Primetime TV News and Schedule page here and next week's will be here.

You can find my older blog posts at

Chronicles - My personal blog, which is not about TV.

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