AceShowbiz - Kenya Barris' upcoming show "Black Excellence" is already receiving a lot of hates even before its premiere. Many people are not having it after knowing that the cast of the comedy show doesn't include dark-skinned actors. Instead, the "black-ish" creator mostly hires light-skinned actors.
One wrote, "Kenya Barris goes hard on the paper bag test for his shows. No darkies allowed," as one other said, "Netflix implemented Strong Black Lead and so far all we've got is light-whitewashing (Raising Dion) and the status quo (Light Skin Excellence)". Someone else commented, "Does K*nya Barr*s know non-lightskin Black ppl exist? And Black Excellence is just a tacky name for a show."
Despite the backlash, Barris defended his decision not to cast dark-skinned actors on his show. In response to one user, he said, "If u knew me u would know how much that hurts. This BLACK family looks like mine." When the said user said that "a lot of dark skin black people who are never represented except as ad on characters from 'rough neighborhoods' like in blackish are probably hurting too," he answered, "Well, that's not something I'd ever do."
Barris continued, "But to cast people like some kinda skin color Allstar game would actually do more harm than good. The answer is to make sure we keep making good programming and depict ALL our beauty in real ways and n roles that show the world the broad spectrum of who we are in REAL ways for EVERYONE 2 see."
"I really appreciate ur comments & I hardly ever react to social media but this cut me a little. These kids look like my kids," he added. "My very black REAL kids & they face discrimination everyday from others outside our culture and I don't want them to also see it from US. Trust me Sis, I get your point, I do. But watch the show and listen 2 what it's about before you prejudge it."
He then said in a separate tweet, "And I'm also not gonna make up a fake family that genetically makes no sense just for the sake of trying to fill quotas. I LOVE MY PEOPLE!" Barris added, "I'm going to say this and then let what happens happen... Colorism is a divisive tool used by the powerful to separate the truly powerful."
Starring Rashida Jones, Iman Benson and Genneya Walton among others, "Black Excellence" uncovers and explores the messy, unapologetic and often hilarious world of what it means to be a "new money" Black family trying to get it right in a modern world where "right" is no longer a fixed concept.
It's still unknown when the show will premiere on Netflix.