Black-ishLatest News and Opinion
Posted Monday 6/11/18 at 2:37PM EDT
Whitney Cummings defends Roseanne's controversial joke about Black-ish and Fresh Off the Boat
The former Roseanne co-showrunner said on The Hollywood Reporter's comedy showrunner's roundtable that it would be disingenuous to mask the real views of the Conners family. Cummings adds: "There are times where I’m like, ‘This is offensive, but this is what they would say when no one is watching and when they don’t have a bunch of lib-tard people controlling what they say.’ So, I found a lot of times my job was just to go, ‘If you feel that that’s what this person would say behind closed doors, then let’s go with it.’”
Posted Thursday 6/07/18 at 5:41PM EDT
Tracee Ellis Ross says ABC's yanking of a Black-ish episode was "frightening"
The actress says she never got an answer for why ABC shelved the February episode, which tackled the National Anthem Protests. "The details of why the episode was pulled and everything that has surrounded that, I do not have the answers for,” Ross said in a Hollywood Reporter roundtable. “To a certain extent, I have purposefully stayed out of those conversations because I’ve had no power to do something beyond that." Noting that the Black-ish cast is usually involved in the show's content, she added: "I have asked for the information and pushed for the information that I felt would be helpful to me and constructive in what I can do with it, because I find it frightening." Black-ish creator Kenya Barris addressed the pulled episode last month, telling Vulture: "We just had a difference of opinion... I feel like it was something for us that we felt like we couldn’t come to an agreement and mutually decided just to sort of move past it." ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey also said last month that the kneeling "was not even really the issue, but I don’t want to get into that. At the end of the day, this was a mutual decision between Kenya and the network to not put the episode out.”
Posted Wednesday 6/06/18 at 6:44PM EDT
Black-ish creator Kenya Barris was ready to go "crazy" in protest after Roseanne Barr's racist tweet
Barris, who in recent months has reportedly expressed frustration with ABC in wake of the pulling of a February Black-ish episode, said today he was ready to mount a PR blitz last Tuesday when he found out about the Roseanne tweet comparing Valerie Jarrett to Plant of the Apes. “I was literally coming out of the show and I was like f*ck this. I was going to go crazy. I was going to call my agent and go on (CNN’s) Don Lemon and other shows,” he said today at Variety's Path to Parity summit. But Barris said he first spoke to ABC executives, including ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey. “I was like, ‘I’m sorry guys’ and then I have to say, the response came in minutes," he said, adding that they told him a cancelation was impending. Barris said Roseanne's tweet was “an indefensible moment but at the same time, you hired a monster and then you asked why the monster was killing villagers."
Posted Monday 6/04/18 at 2:49PM EDT
Kenya Barris settles Black-ish dispute with his former writing partner
Writer and director Bryan Barber had sued for $1 million saying he shared a role in the creation of his former writing partner's hit ABC sitcom. The case has been resolved one week before it was headed to trial.
Posted Tuesday 5/22/18 at 10:30PM EDT
Issa Rae: Insecure was inspired by the predominantly black TV shows I grew up on: Living Single, A Different World, Girlfriends
Those kind of shows just disappeared, says Rae in a GQ profile. “The takeaway was ‘Agh, black people are so dope. Where are they at on TV right now? Now I want my own version,'" she says. Still, Rae is surprised by the demographics of her audience. “I think what most surprised me was that the audience wasn't 90 percent black,” she says. “I think only 30 to 40 percent of the audience are black people. But I'm like, okay, HBO isn't accessible to everyone. Like, I didn't have HBO. I used my friend's password until the show got picked up.”
Posted Tuesday 5/15/18 at 10:53PM EDT
Kenya Barris says "we've moved past" the pulled Black-ish episode, but ABC wouldn't let him comment on the Roseanne joke
"We’ve moved past it," the Black-ish creator says of the “Please, Baby, Please” episode that he agreed with ABC to yank that would've tackled political and societal isues, including NFL players kneeling. "We just had a difference of opinion. I don’t think it’s the first time an episode hasn’t aired. It probably won’t be the last. And I feel like it was something for us that we felt like we couldn’t come to an agreement and mutually decided just to move past it.” ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey addressed the pulled episode earlier today, saying: "Much has been made of the kneeling part of it, which was not even really the issue." Meanwhile, when Vulture asked Barris about the Roseanne joke that seemed to slam Black-ish and Fresh Off the Boat, "an ABC representative interrupted and didn’t allow him to answer."
Posted Tuesday 5/15/18 at 1:10PM EDT
ABC boss: Roseanne will continue moving "away from politics and toward family" in Season 2
"I think that they’re going to stay on the path that they were on toward the end of last season, which is away from politics and toward family," ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey said when asked about Roseanne's political bent. Dungey also addressed a controversial Roseanne joke that seemed to take a shot at fellow ABC comedies Black-ish and Fresh Off the Boat, saying she was surprised by the negative reaction. “We felt like the writers were simply tipping their hat to those shows, and it certainly wasn’t meant to offend,” she said. “I do stand by the Roseanne writers in terms of the decision to include that line. I think they felt that they were expressing a point of view of the Conners in terms of what they would have actually said. We do similar things on some of our other shows too. We’re very clear on Black-ish how many of the opinions and views expressed are those of Dre Johnson.”
Posted Tuesday 5/15/18 at 1:10PM EDT
ABC boss addresses rumored tension with Black-ish creator, says kneeling athletes was "not really the issue" in yanked episode
ABC Entertainment president Channing Dungey said there were "a number of different elements that we had a hard time coming to terms on" in the network's decision not to air a February episode of Black-ish. As for rumored tension that has reportedly led Black-ish creator Kenya Barris to seek an early exit from ABC deal and move to Netflix, she said: "He’s under contract with ABC Studios. Further specifics are not under my purview."
Posted Friday 5/11/18 at 6:52PM EDT
ABC renews Black-ish
The Kenya Barris comedy will return for a fifth season.
Posted Monday 5/07/18 at 10:00PM EDT
Barry is the latest comedy to become serious, just like recent episodes of Black-ish and Brooklyn Nine-Nine
All three comedies turned in dramatic episodes over the past week. Barry, in particular, had an episode that is "potentially jarring," says Alan Sepinwall. "That three comedies all took dramatic turns in the same week of 2018 isn’t all that shocking, particularly when all three have done it before," says Sepinwall. "Black-ish has done incredibly powerful work about race in America (most notably the episode 'Hope,' where the Johnsons talk about the recent spate of innocent black people shot by law-enforcement). Brooklyn‘s first episode of May a year ago was also a serious one, as Terry got racially profiled by a white cop. And from the start, Barry has taken the deaths Barry inflicts very seriously, even as much of the show’s focus is on the comic juxtaposition of a hitman taking an acting class. But the degree to which each show was creatively successful, or not, provides some object lessons on when and how is the right time for sitcoms to get heavy, and whether certain types of shows are just better-equipped to try."
Posted Friday 4/20/18 at 10:50PM EDT
Presenting 10 TV characters who are pretty terrible at their jobs
The Good Place's Michael, Atlanta's Earn and The Big Bang Theory's Wolowitz all seem to perform miserably in their respective fields.
Posted Wednesday 4/18/18 at 11:16PM EDT
Roseanne's jab at Black-ish and Fresh Off the Boat was "a dog whistle so strong that it might have brought Lassie back from the dead"
According to Emily Nussbaum, that one controversial joke about "all the shows about black and Asian families" explains Roseanne. Nussbaum says the joke was a racial dog whistle. If it wasn't, why not target shows about white families like The Middle or Speechless? Is it because those shows are "just like them"? "The jab," says Nussbaum, "was clearly aimed at Black-ish and Fresh Off the Boat, comedies that share ABC’s Tuesday schedule with Roseanne. The line establishes a few things. One is that the Conners don’t live in the same America as the Johnsons, from Black-ish, or the Huangs, from Fresh Off the Boat. There will never be a crossover episode—no fun clash, say, between an aging Jessica Huang and Roseanne, on a Conner trip to Florida. Instead, the Conners are themselves bored, alienated ABC viewers, unable even to remember titles, just that these are the 'black and Asian' shows."
- ABC having the No. 1 show with Roseanne hasn't happened since Who Wants to be a Millionaire in 2000
- What is the point of Mary Conner? The one black Roseanne family member is nearly invisible
- Johnny Galecki's return was a perfect metaphor for the revival's messiness
- David being back only made sense in an alternate universe
- Did Barbara Bush actually call Roseanne Barr "brave," as Barr claimed? Not exactly
- 90-year-old Estelle Parsons looked really good in her return as Bev
Posted Saturday 4/14/18 at 12:07AM EDT
Asian-American Bob's Burgers writer shares the aftermath of criticizing a Roseanne joke
Kelvin Yu, who also appears on Master of None, went viral with his tweets slamming Roseanne for a joke taking a shot at Black-ish and Fresh Off the Boat. "Many of the comments I received were supportive — retweets, likes and the always flattering fist emoji," he writes in The New York Times. "However, I have to admit that the loudest voices to me were the ones that were vitriolic and shockingly mean," including racially disparaging remarks. Yu writes that he found it "so galling that a show celebrating ostensibly marginalized Americans would consider shows about even more marginalized Americans a punch line, tossed off between two yawns and a meh, followed by a roomful of people laughing. And although, admittedly, I have no idea what it means to be white or working class, there are at least a half-dozen shows out there through which I can experience it vicariously. Meanwhile, white working-class people have one — and only one — current network show to help them understand the lives of Asian-Americans (hint: it rhymes with Shmesh Off the Shmoat)."
- Even the haters should appreciate Roseanne: "When a TV show — or any pop culture artifact — is drawing that kind of a mass audience, it has something to tell us about ourselves and the times in which we live"
- Here's your first look at Roseanne's mom Bev's return next week
- Seth Meyers has Roseanne "fans" explain to him why they love the show so much
Posted Wednesday 4/11/18 at 5:05AM EDT
Is ABC ditching its reputation for diversity in wake of Roseanne's success?
Roseanne's emergence and ABC's "heartland strategy" come as Shonda Rhimes is leaving for Netflix, with Fresh Off the Boat on the bubble, and after a controversial Black-ish episode was pulled, prompting creator Kenya Barris to reportedly seek an early exit from his ABC Studios deal. "Recent signs suggest that ABC is entering a new and more complicated era" when it comes to diverse shows, says Alyssa Rosenberg, "and the network isn’t alone — the number of women and people of color creating new shows declined across the industry as a whole in the 2017-2018 television season. And it’s striking, if a little tricky to discuss, that ABC’s reputation for bold discussions of race has hit a rough patch under the leadership of Channing Dungey, who became the first African American woman to serve as president of a major broadcast television network in 2016." As Rosenberg notes, Dungey has used "the language of diversity" in trying to broaden the network's audience to appeal to so-called Heartland viewers. "So far, Dungey’s attempts to secure a broader audience have shown some success," says Rosenberg, pointing to The Good Doctor and Roseanne. ALSO: By trying to appeal to "heartland" viewers, is ABC becoming "Trump TV"?
Posted Friday 4/06/18 at 10:24PM EDT
Can Black-ish creator Kenya Barris realistically leave his ABC contract for Netflix?
Barris signed a three-year deal with ABC Studios last year, presumably before his reported feud with ABC began. Experts weigh in on whether ABC would allow him to exit his contract after just one year.