Review of "Tales" on BET From The TV MegaSite

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Review of "Tales" 7/7/17 by Suzanne
Airs Tuesdays 10/9c on BET

This is an anthology series where each episode is based on a famous rap/hip-hop Tales first episodesong. The first show was really interesting and provocative.  It was based on the NWA song "F*ck Tha Police." It was a dystopian scifi show where white and black roles were reversed. However, this was a total police state, much worse than what we have now. Blacks and whites are completely segregated. White people (now the minority) have to show their papers in order to travel outside their ghetto to work for rich people.  The police are very violent and shooting white people, and getting away with it. It's sort of a revenge fantasy for black people, I think.

Handsome newcomer Matthew Noszka plays Brody, a young man in the zone (known as "the jungle") who sees a neighborhood teen gunned down by police. He insists on testitifying, despite all of the opposition from the police and his own family and neighbors.   He works for the local TV newsman, who seems to be like Bill O'Reilly. His wife comes on to Brody, and things don't turn out too well.

If this show had a really good writer and director, I don't think it would be on BET.  The directors of all of these episodes are music video directors, not regular TV or movie directors. Three people wrote this, and only one of them has much experience. It's a shame because I thought the episode had a great message and is worth watching, despite its flaws.

Normally, I don't recommend a show that's badly written and directed, but this is an exception. I think everyone should watch it.  Even though the directing and writing is very ham-fisted. Let's put it this may be based on a rap video, but it has all the subtlety of Elvis' song "In the Ghetto."  They hit you over the head with every point.

The acting is very good, especially by Tom Hanks' son, Chet, who plays Brody's brother, Troy; and Nafessa Williams as Jenny. I thought that the music, the clothing, and some of the dialogue was really great. It was interesting the way they made the white people seem kind of black in how they dressed, looked, and spoke; and the same with most of the black people. However, interestingly enough, most of the black characters in the show were not as well-developed as the white ones. Ray (Boris Kodjoe), the young D.A. who wanted to get to the truth, was the only black character with any kind of weight.


I read another review that said the other episodes are not as good. I hope that's not true. I look forward to what else they have to offer.


A one-hour anthology series that distills classic hip-hop records and reimagines them as cinematic love letters.

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