Louis C.K. Bucks Casting Trends With Susan Kelechi Watson


Sometimes, I really, really love Louis C.K. He is far from perfect, but he tends to keep things interesting. His bit on “Being White” is one of the top search results when you search his name, and he’s throwing some wrenches into pricing and comedy shows.

Interestingly, as we are dealing with the oh-so-tedious, faux-feminist ideas that criticizing shows like Bunheads and Girls for their lack of diversity is selling out women, Louis C.K. (after tweeting his support of Lena Dunham), decides to exercise his right to cast whoever the hell he wants in his created universe – which resulted in Susan Kelechi Watson being the mother of his children. Huffington Post recaps what was on Jimmy Kimmel:

On “Jimmy Kimmel Live” (Weeknights, 12 a.m. ET on ABC), he was asked about his decision to cast African-American actress Susan Kelechi Watson as his ex-wife and mother of his daughters in Season 3.

C.K. conceded that his TV daughters are “extremely white,” but said that race didn’t really factor into his decision to cast Watson in the role of their mom.

“If the character works for the show, I don’t care about the racial,” the show’s creator, writer, director and star said.

And yet…

Plus, there was another reason he went with a black actress.

To C.K., it’s all about line delivery. “When a black woman tells you to get a job, it’s just more … ” he explained with a laugh.

While my eye did a little twitch at that last bit (can we ever have anything?), Louis C.K.’s decision is a little bit of relief after a long season of whitewashing justifications.

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  • Lola

    It sounds like Johnn Mayer might’ve lifted Louis C.K.’s bit and used it to explain his non-sexual attraction for black women.

  • lola

    ……On a sidenote I hate that these comedy shows always cast the “wives” character as unnaturally stupendously hot. In these shows, its super common to see a stereotypically average guy with a total bombshell but you very rarely see the reverse. If looks don’t matter then there should be all different combinations of stereotypical hot and stereotypical average people not just the average guy bombshell girl formula.

  • s. mandisa

    Im not understanding the “but even in that film I think both of the black actresses are overweight :-/”
    Is a problem for you? If so, why?

  • sistrenista

    His ‘when a Black woman tells you to get a job’ comment makes it seems as if he was just looking to cast a ‘sassy’ Black woman…which is not very groundbreaking

  • Renee

    – Co-sign with your last line. This. Don’t even get me started…

    • linnea

      I don’t have a problem with them being overweight, I did have a problem with the fact that the black actresses chosen to portray the character are purposefully chosen to be overweight.

      The Latina and White actresses are all pretty much the same body type, there are also more of them. The character changes actresses like 12 times in the film, and at two crucial points she’s played by a black actress. So I found their atheistic rendering of the black version of the character suspect.
      If they had had overweight latina and white actresses also, and more diversity in bodytype in general I would not have had a problem but as I said before white/latina actresses basically the same body type and the only TWO black actresses are overweight.
      And I also believe all the other actors are or are supposed to be viewed as children/tweens, the second black actress is quite obviously a grown woman, acting child like. I don’t know if she’s supposed to be slow/less intelligent or just an actress acting like a tween. But if that’s the case why didn’t they just pick a teenage black actress, instead of an obviously adult one?

      I understood the theme and what they were trying to do, I just for obvious reasons didn’t like their narrative/aesthetic choices for black actresses compared to white/latina actresses. Black women come in all different body types/skin shades too, just like any other women.

      For what it’s worth I think the actress did a good job with the material though, and the film was weird but interesting. Very problematic though.

      • lola

        Any woman can be any size and its great to have a multisize representation but it seems like when it comes to hollywood if your white they want you skinny and if your black they want you overweight

  • http://www.facebook.com/eliza.a.5 Eliza Beth A

    Isn’t his ex-wife in real life Black?

  • nk4

    This is the guy who said his penis is a white supremacist http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v2PwhZ82YHU (which is worse for white women afaic) but he’s colour-blind now right, good for him.

    • Anonymous

      Video link doesn’t work. And Louis C.K. and John Mayer had the same bit?

      • Nk4

        I’m pretty sure nobody is confusing Louis CK with John Mayer. :/ The video was called louis ck’s racist boner, I can’t find it on google. It was an interview, basically he said he would have sex with any white woman however ugly or fat but he wasn’t attracted to black women and iirc he made some offensive comments about Asian women but i cant remember, that might have been the interviewer’s contribution. The most offensive part is the assumption that any woman would want to be selected by him! I’m not impressed with this guy at all, a lot of bloggers like him because he made a joke about white privilege but I am waiting it is just a matter of time before he says something and gives himself away.

      • Sidra

        I’m not sure about the “racist boner” thing, but Louis C.K. does have a bit about how much he wants to say the n-word and call people “faggot.” I think it’s in “Chewed Up,” the stand-up special on Hulu. I tried to watch it, wasn’t expecting that, and spent an afternoon crying.

    • lefteyelooking

      I’m pretty sure John Mayer said that in his Playboy Mag interview, not Louis C.K. Do you have a different link?

    • Marla

      Yeah I am pretty sure thats John Mayer, it was well publicised.

  • http://twitter.com/RnRPumpkin Ebony

    *correction* Once I actually see the episodes in question. Sorry!

  • http://twitter.com/RnRPumpkin Ebony

    If his characters’ ex-wife wasn’t spoken about like she was the bane of all existence, sure, I’d dig this, but…. we’ll have to see how the episode pans out once it airs.