Month: October 2010

October 28, 2010 / / black

By Arturo R. García

Long-time readers may recall that I was turned off to Glee pretty quickly. But this week’s  Rocky Horror Picture Show-centric episode piqued my interest. And, thankfully, nearly completely rewarded it.

You see, this ep reached into some personal history for me. That’s yours truly on the right a few years ago playing Brad Majors for the now-defunct Justice League of Denton in Kansas(!). Both of the troupes I performed with, the JLD and Crazed Imaginations, were safe spaces for me as both a POC and a geek.

But I only started caring about the episode when word got out that the lead role of Dr. Frank-N-Furter would be played in the show-within-the-show by Mercedes, who was relegated early on in the series to Sassy Black Diva status.Yeah, I know she got to sing Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful” in an earlier episode, but, as she points out this week, she’d never gotten to play a lead before.

The music from the movie, of course, is just a backdrop for off-stage melodrama: Mr. Schu is putting on the show to stay close to Emma, who’s dating RHPS fan Dr. Carl; Coach Sue fakes supporting the show for the purposes of chasing a local Emmy; and the prospect of performing in their underwear stirs up anxieties for Finn and Sam. (Actually, the male body-image subplot might make for interesting stuff in future episodes, not to mention a welcome contrast to this kind of mess.)

SPOILERS AHEAD

Read the Post Credit Where It’s Due: Glee Gets ‘Sweet Transvestite’ Right

October 27, 2010 / / Uncategorized
October 27, 2010 / / black

By Arturo R. García

Soledad O’Brien and Almighty Debt come closest to the program’s stated goal toward the end, when she asks Pastor DeForest “Buster” Soaries if he “pulled strings” to help one of his parishoners, Fred Philp, get into college, leading to this exchange:

Soaries: I picked up the phone to make sure that nothing got lost in the sauce and that Fred didn’t fall between the cracks.
O’Brien: What’s that mean, “lost in the sauce”?
Soaries: well, Fred was not your classic college applicant, and he was not heavily sought after in colleges. He had academic challenges, financial challenges, and I didn’t want to trust his high school counselors to be his primary advocates. And so when I heard that Fred was having some difficulty with the college of his choice, I thought it probably would help if I let the president know that Fred is with me.

Unfortunately, aside from that sequence and a couple of other statements later in the show, the issue is ignored. The irony of her church-oriented report is, the devil isn’t in the details – it’s in the lack thereof.

Read the Post Going For Broke: The Racialicious Review of Black In America: Almighty Debt

October 27, 2010 / / black

Hosted by Arturo R. García

For a fleeting moment, Undercovers was on to something good. In introducing an Evil French Spy Couple, finally we had the chance to see the Blooms test themselves against real adversaries.

Naturally, by the end of “Not Without My Daughter,” they were dispatched. What with the show seemingly stable, ratings-wise, and more episodes on the way, one can only hope that they come back – and bring much-needed tension with them. But the Roundtable certainly won’t forget about them, nor one particular exchange between Steven and Hoyt …

Read the Post The Racialicious Roundtable for Undercovers 1.5

October 27, 2010 / / african-american
October 26, 2010 / / Uncategorized
October 26, 2010 / / Culturelicious

by Latoya Peterson

Culturelicious

When I first described the idea to Arturo, it took me close to ten minutes to relate my frustration with our limitations, the problems with our ever growing inbox, the desire to expand our content mix, and the ultimate goal of creating a space which showcased the work and creations of artists and creators of color.

Arturo thought for a minute, then summed up the entire project in one sentence:

“So, if Racialicious is the adversary, Culturelicious is the advocate.” Read the Post Introducing: Culturelicious [The $2 Challenge]

October 26, 2010 / / beauty

By Guest Contributor Alona Sistrunk, cross-posted from HairPolitik

When I was in eighth grade, my English teacher asked each student to place five items in a box that best represented him or her. In my box, I placed a pair of scissors, a brown crayon and three other items I’ve long since forgotten. When it was time to present my “Alona box” to the class, I pulled out the scissors and cut off a piece of my weave! Holding the borrowed hair next to my heart, I professed my undying love for weave. That day, I knew that other people’s hair would always have a special place in my heart!

As I made my way back to my seat, amidst much applause from ALL of the black girls in the room, I felt conflicted. With the same zeal it took to love and publicly praise other people’s hair, privately I hated and damaged my own. Even at the tender age of thirteen I knew that didn’t make sense. The fact that I hated my kinky hair is remarkable since I’d hardly ever seen it! It was always chemically straightened or hidden underneath a barrage of ever-changing weaves. Since all I knew about my hair was that it was “bad”, not having to “deal with it” was quite alright with me.

As I grew older, my love affair with extensions grew even more complicated. How could I continue to despise the thought of “freeing” my naturally kinky hair while at the same time wholeheartedly embracing weaves (read: straight and loosely curled hair) with an almost obsessive devotion. How could I become the strong black woman that I wanted to be, that I claimed to be, if I hated who I was made to be? By the time I reached college, shouts of betrayal from the few black women who were “brave” enough to “unleash” their natural hair made me question my authenticity even more. They asked, “Why do you hate yourself, Sistah? Why are you trying to be White-something you’re not? Why don’t you embrace who you are and let your natural self show?”

Read the Post The Weave and I: A Love Story