bet-network

South Korea and BET

I’ve seen a lot of opinions on this and for some reason they are pretty much universally negative. Not saying there’s not a reason for that, because there definitely is, but there’s definitely some positives that are going unnoticed about this. So let’s talk about it.

  • Representation for Black people in Korea
    • Let’s be honest, there’s not much representation for Black people in Korea. With BET now in Korea, now there’s A LOT more Black representation on Korean TV even if it’s just one channel. Now, Black people (Black Koreans and Black people in general) will have a channel to turn to and know they can always see people who look similar to them. This still has flaws of course (namely, that BET programming is geared towards African Americans, so Black Koreans don’t really get to see all parts of themselves) but it’s definitely a start.
  • More respectful representation of Black people to the general Korean public
    • By now, we all know that representation means fuck all if it’s terrible and further adds to marginalization of already marginalized people. BET (for all it’s flaws) does have some pretty varied representation. On any given day, you can turn to BET and see multiple different types of Black people. You can see Black people in love, light skin Black people, dark skinned Black people, black men and women, thugs, gangsters, businessmen and businesswomen, Hip-hop moguls, models, office workers, short hair, straight hair, kinky hair, long hair, natural hair, weaves, and so on. It’s important for others, especially in a largely homogeneous country such as South Korea, to see people in various different lights. In Korea, Black people tend to be portrayed as heavily stereotyped and one dimensional. (Now don’t get me wrong, there’s NOTHING wrong with Black people who fit certain stereotypes). I think this will help Korean people learn a little bit more about Black people.
  • If this does well, it could inspire Korea to get it’s OWN network that’s geared towards and made by Black Korean people
    • That’s self-explanatory. But basically, if this does well cable companies will probably be more likely to pick up a station that Black Korean people made for themselves, because now they’ll (cable companies) know that there’s an audience for Black media.

Now don’t get me wrong, I still think there will be some flaws. Especially since BET is still flawed itself. It still has misogyny, transphobia, homophobia , colorism, some of the shows are full of hotep bullshit, and so on. So that’s clearly a big issue. And obviously, BET didn’t end racism in the US so of course it won’t end racism in any other country. However, I still think there is still some good on BET that could really be good for people, not just in Korea (although that’s the point of this post) but in the world in general. I don’t think BET is gonna have a HUGE social change in regards to race relations in Korea either way if we’re being honest but I do think that it could reach quite a few people, especially in Khiphop circles since they are the ones who are most likely going to be attracted to this network. I just want people to know that there IS some good to be found in this. Some people will use this as a tool to become more educated and some will continue to be fucking idiots. Just like with anything. I still think it’s worth thinking about though.

The Buddy System

For @apanoplyofsong, sorry i’m late

(ao3)


“What’s your going rate?”

“Depends what you want me for,” Monty says, never missing a beat. “I don’t sell weed anymore, but if you want some I might know a guy. Computer stuff, I charge by the hour. If it’s holding your phone for a night while you drink so you don’t call your ex, that’s a flat fee of thirty dollars.”

“Wow. You had that example right on the tip of your tongue,” Clarke says, amused. Monty flashes her a grin.

“I did it for free for Jasper for way too long before I wised up. Why don’t you tell me what you actually need and I’ll tell you what it’ll cost you?”

“I need a plus-one to my high school’s alumni weekend.”

Monty actually pauses his game to turn and look at her, which is mildly alarming. She hadn’t realized this situation warranted such drastic measures.

“Okay, I have questions.”

“Fire when ready.”

“First– your high school is having a seven-year reunion? I mean, come on.”

“It’s not technically a reunion. It’s– So I went to this tiny private school, right?”

“Sounds like you.”

“And about this time every fall, they have a day where they get former Alpha Prep students to come back and have career day, basically. All the upperclassmen pick a presentation to attend each period and it’s supposed to be inspirational and stuff. And it is,” she hastens to add. “My senior year, I only picked one seminar that wasn’t STEM-related, and it’s where I was introduced to the concept of graphic design. I didn’t even know the field existed before. And now they’re asking me to come and present on it, show the work I did with that sparkling water company last year, and it’s kind of a big deal.”

“You don’t have to convince me that it’s a good idea for you to go,” Monty points out. “You just have to convince me it’s a good idea for me to go with you.”

“My ex is going to be there.”

“Finally, it’s getting juicy.”

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Lemme tell y'all about Part 3 of the New Edition Story

It was messy as hell and lit as hell. From Brook’s heart attack to their BET 25 Years Special, Part 3 was amazing. Part 3 > Part 2 > Part 1. Don’t @ me. My weave is gone. My soul has been snatched. This movie was amazing and I can’t wait for what BET does next.

Originally posted by dukenucleus

Originally posted by iaminfiniteus

Originally posted by trapstrblog

Oblivious

Summary:  Prompt for Negan’s Smut Week 2017: “I guess I didn’t notice.” Negan needs to spell somethings out for one of his wives.

Warnings: It’s smut week. Do I really need to do this? Fine. Fluffy smut and language.

Word Count: 2070

Tags: @negansmutweek @negans-network

Originally posted by rikkisixx

She knocked on the door, staring at the floor as she waited for a sign to enter. She pulled at her tight dress. She didn’t have to wait long. Negan swung the door wide open. Her eyes traveled up taking in his long legs and lean form. Dark jeans. White shirt. He wasn’t wearing his signature jacket which was a shame. He was so menacing and dominant in that jacket. People knelt before him as he sauntered around the Sanctuary sheathed in that black leather. Of course, she didn’t have a problem kneeling for him in whatever he wore.

“Hannah banana! Get the fuck in here. Give your husband a god damn kiss, doll.”

She threw her arms around his neck as she placed a soft open kiss on his mouth. He needed no further invitation and invaded her mouth with his tongue. She moaned softly. His right hand grabbed a fistful of her chocolate tresses while his left grabbed a handful of ass. She nibbled his lip and gently sucked on his tongue.

“Whoa there, hot stuff, we need to fucking talk about something first,” he pulled her all the way in to the room and shut the door behind him.

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DO YALL EVEN UNDERSTAND HOW LIT SEASON 4 OF HIT THE FLOOR IS ABOUT TO BE!!!!! HOEMYGAWD!!! SINCE THIS IS OUR FIRST SEASON ON THE BET NETWORK YOU KNOW JAMES AND THE OTHER WRITERS ARE GOING TO SHOW OUT...LAWD I CANT TAKE IT

Im just gonna take my wig off now!!!

Originally posted by imthehuman

Black in Europe

“Ugh I didn’t like France. French people are racist”“Go to Italy! They’re so friendly and I hear they love black women”“Do Germans even have black people outside of the military?”

It’s something almost every black traveller fathoms before venturing abroad. How will my blackness be perceived in this predominantly non-black space? It’s a valid concern. At best, our otherness might put us on a flattering pedestal. At worst, we might get mistreated. Even traveling to remote areas of the U.S you will find people that stare at you and ask aggravating questions like “Can I touch your hair?”. I certainly wondered about how I’d fare as a black woman before moving to France. 

But this post is really not just about me. Yes I am black. Yes I am in Europe. But that really doesn’t make me special. Because even though only a small percentage of African Americans travel to Europe yearly, there are tens of millions of black people that are already there: Afro-Europeans. 

Black people don’t just live in Africa and the United States. Thanks (but like, no thanks) to colonialism, the African diaspora truly reaches some of the most unlikely corners of the earth. Most African Americans make the mistake of assuming that we are the only group of african descendants living as the underrepresented, mistreated, systematically oppressed minorities in predominantly white spaces. Tell that to the 55 million Afro-Brazilians. Or the millions of black descendants in the UK, Italy, and France. 

But our egocentricism isn’t entirely our fault. I, too, had no idea exactly how many black and brown people lived in Europe until I came here. I assumed based on films, television, and images I had seen growing up that Europe is one homogenous white continent. Full of sameness with very little variation of color or culture (or at least not culture from an ethnic standpoint). It’s the invisible diversity of Europe. In the same way African-Americans lack representation in almost all facets of our society, Afro-Europeans lack it even more. 

I had met a lot of people my first couple of months in France but I still felt something was missing. I yearned to connect with people that were like-minded. People in which I had an inevitable bond with. In short, I needed to make black friends. It sounds silly to some but anyone a part of a minority group in some way (race, sexuality, etc) understands this desire. 

The problem was never the lack of black people, but how to organically make friends with them. Making friends as an adult is not an easy feat. When you’re a kid it’s so easy! All you have to do is say this: 

But how do you tell a random person you think they’re kinda cool and we should hang out in the most platonic way possible without being creepy? 

Several months later and I’ve met friends of friends, connected with random people through social media, and have even joined a Black Expats in Paris meet-up. By speaking with people I’ve gathered quite a few perspectives. 

African Americans are both admired and envied in France. Believe it or not, we have the type of global visibility not afforded to others of the African Diaspora. African Americans are the examples of cool, the creators of pop culture. Our celebrities are their celebrities, our favorite TV shows are their favorites too. African Americans are vocal in periods of inequality and reactionary during times of social injustice. Mike Brown & Trayvon Martin are not only names uttered on American soil. “I Have a Dream” is familiar to all European ears, the “Black Lives Matter” cry has been heard around world and the Civil Rights Movement is a part of their curriculum just as much as ours. In short, the Black American experience has left a definite mark in world history. 

For Black Europeans, however, their history tends to get shoved under the rug. I am not AT ALL an expert on this topic but here is a concise history of European colonization in Africa in my own words. 

**Anndi’s Quick and Over-simplified History on the Conquest of Africa**

In the late 1800s, several European countries such as the UK, France, and Portugal had set up port cities in Africa for trading goods and resources. Everything was cool until this dude named King Leopold II of Belgium was like, “you know what would be awesome? My own territory in the Congo”. So homeboy sliced out a chunk of the Congo for his own PERSONAL benefit, not even in the name of Belgium. The other European powers (UK, France, Italy, Portugal, and Germany) started to freak out and thought, “Damn my ego is super big, how can I make it bigger?”. So they had a meeting in Germany, found a map of Africa, and literally cut the continent apart like slices of pizza. It’s worth mentioning that none of the African countries in question were invited to said pizza party. So NINETY PERCENT of the continent was colonized without permission, MILLIONS of Africans were forced into labor, resources were exploited, men were killed, women were raped, children were maimed, feuding ethnic groups were mixed…all under the guise that they were “saving uncivilized savages from eternal damnation”.

Flash forward several decades and the European Powers finally started to leave. Whether they left on their own accord or were driven out by revolutionary groups, the heinous effects of imperialism are evident for several African countries by way of corrupt governments, tireless civil wars, and psychological trauma.

**The End** ….Except not the end because these heinous effects still linger. 

I’ve noticed a slight lack in community for Afro-French people. For African-Americans, there’s this idea of fictive kinship. I may not know you from Adam, but if we are the only two black people within a predominantly white space then we will acknowledge one another. But that’s only on a micro-level. On a macro-scale, we have become masters of creating spaces for ourselves. Hair salons & barbershops, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, BET Network, NAACP… we have a black national anthem!! All with the intent of uplifting and strengthening one another, for validating our place in a society not made for us. 

But our sense of community derives from our shared experiences. Many of our ancestors were slaves. Many of our living relatives grew up in segregation. For France, and many other European countries, the experiences of black europeans, while similar, are not identical nor are they shared. At any rate, its hard to have a sense of community when you don’t even know how many people of African descent live in your country. Apparently, taking an ethnic census is constitutionally banned in France. 

For Afro-french people, they’re not bound together by race as much as their family origins. If you’re a black woman from Guadeloupe, you might feel a bigger bond to people from the West Indies than to those from West Africa. Honestly, I envy greatly that Afro-Europeans know exactly where they come from and even have family that still live in those countries. I have never felt so shameful about not knowing my roots until moving here. Every time I meet an Afro-french person for the first time, the conversation goes as follows.

Them: So where are you from?

Me: I’m from the U.S!

Them: Yeah, I know. But like where are you really from?

Me: Washington, DC. 

Them: What’s your family origin I mean to say.

Me: Um…I don’t know? My ancestors were slaves so…

Them: …..

Me: …..Nice meeting you! 

In general, there’s this idea that black people are never really from whatever predominantly white country they reside in. Afro-french people can be born and raised in Paris and never feel or be seen as “french”. Even when I meet White Europeans, they are generally skeptical about my origin story but for a different reason. Because I have a lighter skin tone than most Afro-french, many assume that I am “métisse” or mixed. During my trip to Italy, an italian man told me “You’re beautiful. I love mulatto women”. The assumption really bothers me because black and beautiful are not mutually exclusive concepts homeboy! But I do love their faces of disappointment when I tell them I am proudly, undeniably, 100% BLACK. 

But let’s discuss some positives, for there are many. While Black French don’t organize against injustices in the same way we do, that doesn’t mean they aren’t having these important conversations. The Afro-fem movement seems to be really big here. I’ve seen countless articles, youtube videos, tweets, and have even been invited to conferences by Afro-feminists to discuss the interesting balance of race and gender. 

I’ve met so many black french women who are smart and woke. Clever and funny. Women who want to be a voice for their community. Women who are artists, poets, and singers. Women who are beautiful inside and out. Women who are writers. Women who are fly. Women who are college educated. Women who want to uplift and strengthen their fellow sisters. Women who want to be a vessel for serious change in their society. 

So don’t sleep on Afro-Europeans. They have a very real place in our world. 

I would be remiss not to mention the Strolling Series by Cecile Emeke, which was in truth my personal introduction to Afro-European voices. Cecile Emeke is a British woman who brilliantly decided to film black individuals across the African diaspora. The result? Unraveling the generalized blanket of our black experiences into singular, personal threads of testimony. Emeke has filmed in the Netherlands, Italy, Jamaica, and many other countries and its widespread appeal has garnered a huge Youtube following. Of course, you’ll hear the familiar stories of micro-agressions, respectability politics, and self-love affirmation. But you’ll also hear views on mental health, sexual orientation & expression, capitalism, veganism, colonial reparations, and a plethora of other subjects not often heard from black standpoints. 

If you’re interested, I would start with one of my three favorites: Two Black Friends in France , One Black Male Feminist from the UK, or A Black Actress in London

So what does it mean to be Black in Europe? I have the same answer for someone who would ask what its like to be black in the U.S. There is no simple answer. The culture, the attitudes, the ideas, the joys, the struggles of black people are not monolithic. They are varied. They are nuanced. They may intersect but they don’t coalesce. 

I write this to say there is more to the black experience than what you have experienced personally. I think its important not only to have conversations on blackness within the US but in a global context as well. And lets remind ourselves that as Black Americans, our global visibility gives us a certain level of privilege. The next time you say #BlackLivesMatter, mentally expand that demand outside of North America. When you think of the black community, challenge yourself to think beyond your own borders. 

And if you’re able, travel abroad. Talk to people. Have these discussions. Your eyes and minds will open wider than you know. 

3

Who: Keith Powers
Role: Ronnie DeVoe
Ask About Me: Powers is best known as “Theo” in the MTV comedy series Faking It. But true film heads will no doubt recognize the 24-year-old Sacramento native as Dr. Dre’s younger brother in the 2015 NWA blockbuster biopic Straight Outta Compton.

VIBE: So let’s get into Ronnie DeVoe because he’s one of the more interesting characters in that his reputation as a dancer is so profound within the group. Was there any apprehension of coming into this project knowing that I am going to have to dance my ass off?
Keith Powers: Yeah, when doing my research—just finding out that Ronnie was the best dancer—I was kind of in the awe, man. Because I’m not a natural dancer, so I [had] to train and go there ‘cause I never did choreography. So it was a type of thing where this is going to be the first time, as an actor, where I am going to have to become a researcher; where I am going to have to become a true storyteller. Because now I have to get outside of my box in order to become someone else.

Everybody talks about how the casting call for the movie went down. How there were a million actors coming in to compete for the roles of New Edition. Just how competitive did it get?
Yeah, it’s funny cause I tested with Algee and Woody [McClain]. I went against Algee [Smith], who plays Ralph. I didn’t get [the role], which I knew I wouldn’t ‘cause I wasn’t right for Ralph. They let me go and I came back for Ronnie. I remember going up against a lot of guys. Chris [Robinson] and Jesse [Collins] will put you in a scene with the people you are going against and like switch everybody in and out. But even though we were all competing, it was dope to see young black men all cheering each other on still. Like no matter how much we were competing, it was a type of thing that at the same time we all got to work together. It made you feel more solidified because you were going through the trenches for this. It was a scary process, but it made you feel even more solidified once you got in. And that was before boot camp. So that was only 10 to 5 percent of the whole job because we still had to learn our [Boston] accents and we still had to get to the dancing and we still had to start researching.

The dancing…everybody has talked about Brooke Payne and what he put you guys through, the good and the bad. Can you describe having that man in front of you telling you to do that step over again a million times?
The thing about Brooke is he is a very calm man. He is the type of guy that he doesn’t have to watch the rehearsal to see that you messed up. I think that those type of guys scare me the most…or I respect the most. I respect him the most mainly because he doesn’t have to do too much. He is more laid back, more mafia godfather type…”Do it again.” [Laughs.]

It’s funny because [Brooke] might be on the phone looking away doing business and he will say, “Keith, do that again.” He will keep doing it until we get on point. He will be like run it back, run it back. Brooke is like an uncle. He is really somebody to mirror as far as being a leader and you are going to see it in this film played by Wood Harris. Wood just gives this demeanor that is just so cool, calm and collected. That’s Brooke Payne.

I like the fact you guys got the chance to hang out with your doppelgängers in New Edition. What was the experience like being around Ronnie, who has been called the coolest member of the group?
Man, when you hang out with Ronnie, he’s the type of guy where it’s like you instantly feel at home with his spirit. He’s such a relaxed, smooth guy, just like his uncle Brooke Payne. He is so much like him that it makes you happy that he’s helping you. When I was doing the moves, Brooke and Leon would teach me and they were amazing. But sometimes they wouldn’t get to me like Ronnie would teach me. Ronnie would give you these tricks. It would just be little tricks that he would do and I’m like, “Oh, snap…that made it easier for me!”

[Ronnie] is so cool that you can already relate to the moves without even knowing it because he’s telling you in a way that he can level it down for you. And I love that about Ronnie. He’s always smiling. He’s always cheering us on. They say Ronnie was always the core of the group. He is the mediator, and you feel it when he walks into the room.

We have to talk about the BBD era. Here we have the three members of New Edition that people thought would never find that kind of massive success away from the group. Can you talk about how it felt to put that goody-goody New Edition thing to the side and just go full on crazy and wild with Bell Biv DeVoe?
The BBD side was a whole other beast. After you learn all the New Edition moves it’s like, “Now we are going to get into BBD!” And I was like, “Ahhh, this is the hip-hop dancing part.” I was just doing the soul and the steps and “Mr. Telephone Man” and now I got to really sweat. I just remember being scared to get to “Poison.” If you mess up “Poison” you might not be able to work again in this town [laughs].

Ronnie always tells me that when he was young [and in New Edition] that was “shy Ronnie.” He stayed out the way, he was trying to find his way in the group because he was coming from a different [housing] project, which was Cathedral. He said when N.E. Heartbreak came, that’s when his stock rose. I was trying to show that [while playing] this character. I tried to show that in my demeanor. So when it got to BBD it was like, “We are one of the hardest things to branch off from New Edition!” Who would have thought that?

That’s the brilliance of Bell Biv DeVoe. No one saw that coming, right?
I mean, If you look at BBD, a lot of artists today are 100% influenced by [them]. Almost 90 percent of rap, nowadays rappers can’t even get on the radio without a singer on the hook. That’s a branch from BBD.

The legacy of New Edition…what do you hope for the impact of this movie?
One, I need the newer generation to respect the legacy. Especially if you want to learn music, you have to know who New Edition was to a certain extent. I want them to see how professional New Edition was. I want them to see where they messed up business wise so that they can learn from it. So we can have our young African-American artists knowing how to manage their money and to have the right team. And I want them to take away brotherhood from it. I want them to realize it wasn’t New Edition against each other…it was New Edition vs. the corporations.

I always say that we are introducing New Edition to the younger generation so we have a responsibility. ‘Cause if they don’t like it, they won’t go back and look at the real New Edition. I had one comment on Instagram after I posted a clip of New Edition’s “If It Isn’t Love.” And a girl was like, “This reminds me of [Beyonce’s] ‘Love On Top.’” And I said, “Yeah, it was inspired by ‘If It Isn’t Love.’” And she said, “Oh, I didn’t know that, thank you!” I want this to be a history lesson.

Why Netflix should not cancel Sense8

While I was preparing for anther post about reproducing Sense8 in TS3, Netflix has confirmed that they failed to renew or give Sense8 a closure in any forms. That’s really frustrating. Sense 8 has a mature story line which was supposed to be 5 seasons in total, maybe the team rather left a loose end than comprising under pressure. [correction: creators have confirmed that Netflix did not contact them after the announcement of cancellation.]

What I don’t understand is Netflix’s strategy. Why does Netflix choose to abandon an unique image in the “brand is everything” era simply due to commercial reasons? Netflix is not only losing its reputation as a diversified platform with original creativity, but also sending out many negative messages!

To its audience, Netflix’s cancellation is  telling them “don’t devote into anything you see on that platform” because once it’s not selling well, you’ll lose it at any time in any circumstances.

To the creators and performers, Netflix is actually saying “do what market likes, or we’ll kill it.” It’s very disrespectful and almost a threat. Now Netflix is canceling shows for profit, one day they will ask the producers to cater for the market’s taste or the mainstream. Then we won’t have anything that is not “everyone likes”, only those superficial meaningless but safe from controversy left.  Bye Bye creativity, Bye Bye diversity.

Value? what value? only market value counts. Let’s talk about cost and market then. Of course, A network has the decisive right based on financial consideration, However Netflix has earned its reputation by investing heavily on brilliant original TV series like Sense8, Orange is the New Black, House of Cards, etc. If Netflix cancel Sense8  for profit, it’s definitely a big step backward and what makes Netflix different from other cable networks then? Nothing.

Please Netflix, you are giving up one of your most precious assets and telling people you only want to make shitty soup operas like others. A TV series like Sense8 do cost huge sum of money, but if you maintain your insistence on quality, in the long run there will be many more good scripts and talents drawn to you. The more great shows you produce, the more audience you can attract. That’s a win-win. If you cancel Sense8, no one wins except your rival networks. I bet they are all relieved now because you just destroyed your own market edge and niche.

Netflix, as an online stream operator, should find a different approach and think differently from traditional cable networks. Your main target user base are younger Internet generation whose appetite differs from that of the last cable generation. Diversified content. diversified products instead of some cliche that they had enough since childhood. What else can you convince the audience to change their consumption behaviors and choose Netflix instead of cables?  Please look further for the bigger picture. There are things worth more than money.