Happy Thursday!

get it Michonne…I mean Danai Gurira 😉

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Eclipsed

oooh la la…

My girl crushes Michonne and Patsey are on the cover of Uptown Magazine. Or maybe I should use their real names. Danai Gurira (“The Walking Dead”) and Lupita Nyong’o (“12 Years a Slave”) have made history. It’s the first time a Broadway play has had an all female cast/writer/director. Go head ladies!! What a great way to end the week. Black women doing big things.

Happy Friday 🙂

uptown uptown
Photo from: http://www.uptownmagazine.com

African/Nollywood Films (2)

While I missed out on “Grigris,” I was able to see “Mother of George.”  Just by the skin of my teeth. A snowstorm threatened to have the movie interrupted/audience sent home.  Luckily, the alarm/warnings to leave the theater, didn’t go off until after the movie was over.  Whew! I’ve been wanting to see the film for a while. The film was at a local indie theater for a week, then disappeared. So, I was excited to see that it was part of the African Film Festival lineup.

“Mother of George”  is a Nigerian film.  The Nollywood film industry has  boomed over the years. It’s the third largest film industry in the world (after Hollywood/Bollywood). The amazing growth of these African films, begs the question “What can black filmmakers in the USA learn from Nollywood ?”

I was surprised to learn that “Mother of George” was the second film of Nigerian fashion photographer, Andrew Dosunmu.  You definitely see the influence of art, beauty, and fashion in the film. The movie is simply gorgeous.  The story revolves around Nigerian  newlyweds, Adenike (badazz Michonne, I mean Danai Gurira 🙂  and Ayodele (Isaach de Bankole).

I just want to say Isaach de Bankole is fine as hell! He also does a great job portraying Ayodele as a kind/loving (if not clueless) husband.

After the wedding (like all good traditional Nigerian housewives),  Adenike is supposed to get pregnant (with a son, of course). She doesn’t. It soon becomes apparent, after a couple of years of not getting pregnant, the couple’s fertility issues rest with Ayodele. However, in this traditional family, it’s absurd (and offensive) to blame the man. Ayodele, ignores Adenike pleas to see a fertility doctor. It forces Adenike to make a decision, that will knock your socks off.

The film is a good study on how culture/traditions can be empowering (as you watch the film, you see a vibrant/supportive Nigerian family/friends that you long to be part of.  Also, the film made me hungry 🙂, but can also be stifling. It shows how traditional gender roles, can be harmful to women AND men. A lot that happens in the film could have been avoided if Ayodele had supported his wife/listened to his heart…

Dark Girls Rock!

Years ago, I remember complaining on a blog that light-skinned black women singers were the new standard in r&b/mainstream music. At the time, Beyonce was at the height of popularity and record companies were following suit with their own “light girl” copies of Bey.  Another poster responded “Don’t worry, dark girls got next.” I guess things do work in cycles, because ten years later, it looks like dark-skinned black women are back in vogue again (how I hate saying that).

Whatever the reason why darker-skinned black women are making a comeback, it’s still exciting to see these women getting shine in black and mainstream media. I can only imagine the damage that has been done to little black girls with the constant white washing of black female images. I’m a grown azz dark-skinned black woman, and have to fight daily to keep my mind decolonized. The media works hard to make us all hate ourselves (they need us to buy products), but the hostility towards darker-skinned black women was getting  out of control. It’s refreshing to see a variety of images again in the media. This is not to say, all is better for darker-skinned black women. There is still an agenda to erase us, but we  are pushing through. Whether they like it or not. Heh.

The main person setting it off, is actress Lupita Nyong’o. Nyong’o is currently starring in 12 Years a Slave (I still haven’t seen this yet, for some reason):

Photo from: DuJour Magazine
Photo from: DuJour Magazine

Besides being gorgeous, Nyong’o received her Master’s degree from Yale School of Drama.  Nyong’o is seriously giving Anika Noni Rose a run for my new girl crush.  Man, I hate break ups 😦

Next, is my favorite new singer Laura Mvula. If you haven’t heard any of her music yet, you better ask somebody! She caused a bit of controversy with her music video “It’s Alright.”   In the song, Mvula scolds folks who criticize her for not being light skin.  On the cover of Pride Magazine, Mvula stated she was “proud to be an ambassador for darker skinned women.”

Photo from: Pride Magazine
Photo from: Pride Magazine

And last (but never least), is my girl Danai Gurira. She plays Michonne on The Walking Dead. So, that’s enough reason alone to give her props. She’s another babe rocking it for dark-skinned women. And she can wield a mean sword:

Photo from: atlantablackstar.com
Photo from: atlantablackstar.com

Shout outs to Adepero Oduye, Kelly Rowland, and Sevyn Street as well. Dark girls got it back on lock and we rocking it. It’s about time. it’s not like we went anywhere, anyway 😉

The Walking Dead: Season Four

I don’t have cable. So, it’s just recently that I got a chance to watch the first two seasons of The Walking Dead, on Netflix. Of course, I was immediately hooked. I love all things sci-fi, horror, and action packed. I have read the grumblings of some hardcore fans that think the show is far less superior than the comics, but what can you do. Let’s be real, even on cable television, there’s only so much they can/will show. The comic is pretty graphic.  Personally, I think the show is good, not perfect, but interesting at least.

I haven’t watched the third season yet, so need to catch up, but the trailer for the upcoming season looks da bomb (yep, breaking out the 90’s slang):

My one issue  with the show has been the lack of diversity of characters. It has been especially strange, as the show takes place in the ATL (Atlanta, GA). Only one black person (T-Dog) in the initial group of survivors? Umm, okay. With this trailer, it’s nice to see more black folks in the mix, especially black women. It looks like we get a badass character in Michonne, played by Danai Gurira:

SPOILER ALERT!!! SPOILER ALERT!! SPOILER ALERT!!

I’ve read that in the comics, Michonne is horribly sexually assaulted. I know comic fans have been upset, the show has not stayed true to the  book, but I wouldn’t mind if this was left out. Heck, I wish it wasn’t in the comic to begin with. Why are black women characters always being depicted as downtrodden/beaten/raped.  It’s like they can only have a complex black woman character, if she’s been degraded in some type of way. Eh…but other than that, looking forward to seeing more of this new actress 🙂