The Performative Wokeness of Dear White People

“I plan to marry me a dark-skinned sister. Have the ashiest, blackest babies possible.” Says the character of Reggie (Marques Richardson) to his group of friends as they’re taking a stroll on the campus of Winchester University, the fictional university set in the world of Dear White People. Reggie’s proclamation came during a conversation about the character of Sam’s (Logan Browning) new white boyfriend.

The statement echoes a conversation that Sam has earlier in the series with her group of friends where she says that she prefers her men like she prefers her coffee “full-bodied with preferably Keyan origins.” Prompting Muffy (Caitlin Carver) to ask Sam, in Muffy’s words, “a dumb white girl question,” why it would be racist if Muffy was to only date white men, but not racist for Sam to only date black men. Sam goes onto explain that there are parts of her identity that white men will never understand in the ways a black man could. However, Sam does eventually start dating a white guy named Gabe (John Patrick Amedori), who only after being outed on his Instagram account, does she go public with.

Sam’s relationship with a white man becomes a point of contention for many of her closest friends, sparking an ongoing discussion in the series of whether a black person can really be pro-black, while also having a white significant other.

Reggie’s politics, however, are never challenged in the same ways that Sam’s are. His declaration of love for dark-skinned women, is dead upon arrival considering that the only other thing that he is known for outside of his pro-blackness, is his crush on Sam. A light-skinned biracial woman.

Based on the 2014 movie of the same name, Dear White People is a satire set at a PWI about college campus politics through the lens of black students. The show also explores the theme of identity. How often people assume identities or have identities projected onto them that contradicts who they really are. Identities such as being“woke.”

Used to describe a person who is socially and politically conscious, the word “woke” has surged in popularity within recent years due to social media and the rise of social movements such as Black Lives Matter. But what once was a way to describe someone’s political awareness, being, or staying woke, has seemingly dissolved more into a competition of who is more educated on race and other social issues.

Performative wokeness is examined within the world of Dear White People, with episode five featuring a scene where Reggie shows off an app he created called Woke or Not. The app shows photos of students at Winchester University and with a push of a button app users can determine whether a person is woke. Or not.

Even though Dear White People pokes fun at the absurdity and arrogance that comes from people who think they have the moral authority to decide who is or isn’t woke, the show itself falls into many of the same traps that it attempts to satirize.

In an episode centered around Gabe, he’s sitting at a table surrounded by Sam and other black women while they discuss white male privilege and how women of color are often passed over for opportunities that usually end up being given to mediocre white men. While he’s silently listening on, Gabe imagines himself banging his fist against the table as he looks directly into the camera and exclaims that sometimes people actually earn the things they get and that just because he’s a white man doesn’t make him an “asshole.”

“Asshole,” of course, seems just a tad bit reductive considering that being an “asshole” in this scenario is about benefiting from a society that prioritizes average white men over hard working black women. While the narrator says that only “a tiny part” of Gabe wishes he could make such a statement, it’s still concerning that Gabe, who is supposedly enlightened on issues of racism and sexism, is secretly harboring resentment against women of color for venting their frustrations about the institutions that systematically hold them back from opportunities

Is it possible that Gabe is being used as a conduit to discuss liberal racism? After all, episode five deals with how even “good” white people can be guilty of the same racism that they like to think they’re above. But this wasn’t Gabe’s first time making racially tone deaf statements without being taken to task. In the first episode, Gabe tells Sam that he wouldn’t let his friends make her feel like she didn’t belong in his “world,” after Gabe’s first uncomfortable meeting with Sam’s friends where he made a series of half-hearted attempts at trying to relate to the struggles of black students.  

 However, the most egregious occurrence of Dear White People’s lack of self awareness about their own performative wokeness comes with their handling of discussions surrounding colorism.  

The most improved upon element from Dear White People the movie is the colorism. In the movie, the character of Coco (Teyonah Parris,) a dark-skinned black woman, existed solely as a foil to Tessa Thompson’s version of Sam, a light-skinned biracial woman. With the movie being turned into a series, we see Coco, now played by Antoinette Robertson, develop into a fleshed out, fully realized character. But even with the series upgrading on the movie’s shortcomings, even going as far as calling Sam out on her light-skin privilege, the series began developing flaws of their own in regards to its colorism.

Joelle (Ashley Blaine Featherson) outside of being Sam’s best friend, also has feelings for Reggie, the guy who has feelings for Sam. This scenario is reminiscent to a flashback scene in episode four in which Coco longingly looks on as Troy, (Brandon Bell) a guy she has feelings for, flirt with Sam. Even though in that particular situation, the scene was a part of an episode that explores Coco’s relationship to colorism and how it affects her love life, the same motivation doesn’t appear to be behind the love triangle of Sam, Joelle, and Reggie.

The fact that the only light-skinned biracial woman of the show is constantly shown as the object of affection, while the two principle dark-skinned women of the show are depicted as coveting over color struck black men who constantly overlook them for said light-skinned biracial woman is disheartening to watch.

What makes this even more disheartening, is the fact that Joelle was walking right beside Reggie, struggling to contain her smile, as he declared that he was going to “marry him a dark-skinned sister,” only later to hook up with Sam. But Joelle, nor does anyone else, call him out about how his preference doesn’t align with who we actually see him dating.

Has Dear White People found itself stuck in the same tiny confines of identity that it sought out to expose through its characters? Can the contradictions that arise within the show merely be chalked up to poor writing? Or does it prove that inconsistency will inevitably happen when trying to voice the concerns of multiple people with varying opinions? A light skin woman can not speak to the struggles of colorism that a dark skin woman faces. A white man can’t relate to the problems a black man has. And one show cannot voice the opinions of all within a community.

Demon notes: Vassago

Rank: Prince
Color: Blue
Incense: Cedar
Metal: Tin
Planet: Jupiter
Element: Water
Enn: Keyan vefa jedan tasa Vassago
Date: April 11-20 20-30 degrees Aries (day)
Tarot: 4 of wands
Original purpose: Divination (past and present) and to uncover lost and hidden things

Daemonolatry Goetia (S Connolly)
Contact Vassago to find out if an enemy has cursed you or is doing something behind your back.  Vassago is also a good counsel regarding friendship and other interactions with people.  He can advise you in negotiations

Crowley’s Goetia
Third Spirit is called Vassago and is a Mighty Prince. He is of the same nature as Agares. This Spirit is of a good nature, and his office is to declare things past and to come, and to discover all things hidden or lost. He governs 26 Legions of Spirits

Luciferian Goetia (Michael Ford)
Vassago is an angelic ruler of the tarot; silently invoked this Prince may produce impulses and initiatory associations via the tarot thus allowing instinct to grow with association of such tools’ of divination. Vassago is also ideal for the willed divination of future initiation, a Gateway to the Luciferian Realm of Spiritual development. Vassago appears in the black mirror as a wind-rushed robed spirit who is both angel and demonic shadow, who has many arms and talon-fingers.

Other notes
Also Allegedly appears in the Book of the Office of Spirits as “Usagoo”, as an anger.
He is one of the few spirits found in the Lesser Key of Solomon but not in Johann Weyer’s Pseudomonarchia Daemonum.

(photo source from Illustrated goetia and google)

As Always

Star Wars Legends vs. Canon

1) Who were the sons Han Solo and Leia Organa who fell to the Dark Side?

  • CANON: Kylo Ren/Ben Solo
  • LEGENDS: Darth Caedus/Jacen Solo

2) Who were the Y-Wing pilots who survived the Battle of Yavin?

  • CANON: Evaan Verlaine
  • LEGENDS: Keyan Farlander

3) Who were the reluctant cowboy Jedi who wear unique shoulder guards, had goggles-wearing Rebel girlfriends, and fought evil Inquisitors?

  • CANON: Kanan Jarrus
  • LEGENDS: Kyle Katarn

4) Who were the Rebel agents responsible for stealing the Death Star plans?

  • CANON: Jyn Erso and the Rogue One team
  • LEGENDS: Kyle Katarn, Rianna Saren, Bria Tharen, Havet Storm, etc.

5) Who were the rare honorable Imperial admirals who weren’t as vicvious or cruel as other officers in the Galactic Empire?

  • CANON: Rae Sloane
  • LEGENDS: Gilad Pellaeon

6) What battles marked the first significant victories for the Rebel Alliance against the evil Galactic Empire?

  • CANON: Battle of Scarif
  • LEGENDS: Battle of Toprawa

7) Who were the apprentices of Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker who became a founding member of the Rebel Alliance?

  • CANON: Fulcrum/Ahsoka Tano
  • LEGENDS: Starkiller/Galen Marek

8) Who were the dark-skinned women with past relationships to Han Solo who also claims to possess starships superior than the Millennium Falcon?

  • CANON: Sana Starros
  • LEGENDS: Salla Zend

9) Who were the high-ranking Imperial officers who were instrumental in the creation of the first Death Star?

  • CANON: Orson Krennic
  • LEGENDS: Bevel Lemelisk

10)  Who were the Imperial scientists who were forced/manipulated to help create the first Death Star?

  • CANON: Galen Erso
  • LEGENDS: Qwi Xux

11) Who were Princess Leia’s best friends from Alderaan who are also members of the Rebel Alliance?

  • CANON: Evaan Verlaine
  • LEGENDS: Winter Celchu

12) What happened to Jar Jar Binks after the rise of the Galactic Empire?

  • CANON: Became an outcast, is now a street-performing clown.
  • LEGENDS: Sent to an undisclosed location by Emperor Palpatine.

13) Who served as the Queens of Naboo during the Galactic Civil War?

  • CANON: Sosha Soruna
  • LEGENDS: Kylantha

14) Who were the Rebel pilots who flew as Green Four during the Battle of Endor?

  • CANON: Shara Bey
  • LEGENDS: Jake Farrell

15) Who were the designers who came up with the B-Wing starfighter?

  • CANON: Quarrie
  • LEGENDS: Admiral Ackbar, with assistance from the Verpines

16) Who were the Mandalorian Protectors who aided the Rebel Alliance and who shares the first name Fenn?

  • CANON: Fenn Rau
  • LEGENDS: Fenn Shysa

17) Who were the Jedi Knights who were blinded in a lightsaber duel by a character voiced by Sam Witwer?

  • CANON: Kanan Jarrus, blinded by Darth Maul
  • LEGENDS: Rahm Kota, blinded by Galen Marek

18) Who were the female Rebels who led a team during a major battle in an effort to transmit the stolen Death Star plans to the Tantive IV?

  • CANON: Jyn Erso and the Rogue One team
  • LEGENDS: Bria Tharen and the Red Hand Squadron
which vorelignment are you?

Kids who had no idea what vore is, still don’t know what vore is, and ignore the convores

Honestly just here for the ride, amused by our antics but disturbed by vore and vore jokes, thinks mod keyan is really annoying, would help willow stab mod keyan 23 times

Wanted the bap vore titles to continue, actively encourages keyan and makes him think he’s a funnyman, laughs at vore jokes and does not condemn them


The kids who have barely logged on since before the vorepocalypse, probably living their lives and not procrastinating

Complains about vore and sends “Do Not Vore” pics, but still posts a mouth emoji after smol ones and took a bap vore song title in The Vorelection



Consistently sends “Do Not Vore” pics and attempts to stop Mod Keyan, laughs at the prospect of his death at the hands of Willow, stops the voriers from writing V O R E

The kid who’s gonna drag me on tumblr for my vore jokes, consistently answers “keyan” to the question of why vore is brought up

Mod Keyan


(via Fantastic Four | spotted owlet family. | karthi keyan | Flickr)

Let’s do a follow-up discussion to the “Grave Flowers” theory from a while ago.

The tl;dr version of it is basically: the dust from the countless monsters fallen in the war infused with the bodies of the exposed human soldiers and upon their death (either by natural or otherwise causes) the Determination from their Souls passing out of their bodies reanimated the monster’s consciousness similar to Flowey’s “birth” but in a collective mind like an Amalgamate that would be probably be in conflict with the lingering spirit/consciousness of the humans. Thus creating an army’s worth of undying, unstable, magically charged soulless husks.

“Human zombies? In Undertale?” well given the cards already on the table it seems to be a strong possibility.

  • We know that from the Waterfall runes: “Countless monsters were turned to dust”
  • We know from the Snowdin libraby that: Things covered in dust have the essence of a monster
  • We know from Flowey that: When a non living thing infused with monster dust gets injected with determination the dead monster becomes reanimated in a soulless body
  • We know from Alphys’ experiments: that Determination can be extracted from human Souls.
  • We know from the red flavor text variant on Chara’s coffin that dead humans’ could have an essence/consciousness that is separate from their soul and clings to their body

We also know that Mt. Ebott already had a reputation for people disappearing when they climb it, before any of the fallen children started coming to the Underground in the year 201X, and the monsters have been sealed for around over a millennia according to Bratty/Catty. Yet we see no sign of other humans falling into the Underground aside from the seven fallen children.

But why should it matter? We don’t see any undead humans shambling about on the mountain while Chara was climbing it. And what if the humans in the war could just wash the dust off? We don’t see Frisk turn into a zombie during a kill-all or neutral route when they get covered in dust so what gives?

Regarding Frisk never turning into a dust zombie, we never see what happens to them after the game over screen until we reload/reset. I’m also ruling out Chara as we see them in their monologue as a “zombie,” because the only exposure to monster dust they had was when Asriel died and their Soul had already left their body by then and Frisk falling on their grave hardly counts as an “injection.” Rather I think the opposite happened and Chara’s essence was infused into Frisk’s soul but I digress.

Could the humans have just washed off the dust despite the people of the middle ages poor hygienic practices?
@potted-omega points out that the flower flowey was born from likely absorbed Asriel’s essence from the dust mingled earth and likely the humans would need to intake the dust rather than just be covered in it.

That is the key

An anon a while back pointed out that it’s possible that all the dust could have created respiratory problems, like miners lung, for the humans in close-quarter combat during the war. That got me thinking If dust did get into the lungs of a human, theoretically it could get absorbed into the blood right? While running this idea by @mika4eyed she pointed out that dust in the trachea would likely get filtered by mucus, but even then don't we unconsciously swallow that stuff in our throats almost all the time. So even if the monster dust isn’t getting absorbed through the lungs it’s getting absorbed through the stomach.

So now, we’ve established that a percentage of the human population that was involved in the war had their bodies infused with monster dust. What does that mean?

Well it probably took a while after the war for the humans to realize the situation they were in until those who participated in the war started dying, either naturally or violently. As we see with Flowey, Frisk, and even Undyne that those who are at death’s door will experience a primal surge of determination to live, for those with save files that means reloading to the last save point. But for those without save powers, those dying from old age, (or those dying from self-affliction) death will eventually claim them. That swan-song surge of Determination could have triggered the magical cocktail of monster dust brewing in the human solders bodies.

Yet instead of a singular monster’s consciousness being revived, instead there are dozens if not hundreds of monsters’ identities conglomerating in a single human body, who has a lingering will of their own. Every undying human would have the equivalent of a chamber of echo-flowers in their minds, an amalgam contending for dominance in their heads. Most humans would have been reduced to shambling husks, no doubt. Shambling, empty husks yarning to have a SOUL again.

See where I’m going with this?
In an attempt to rid the world of monsters the humans created true monsters.

Flowers. More than one.
More than one soulless being with the will to live.

Now I don’t think that all the “Grave Flower” humans ended up all as mindless zombies, after all humans are extraordinarily willful and Determined even in the face of death and uneven odds. I suspect there would be different cases of these beings:

  • Humans who could not overcome their mental amalgamate would be like the walking dead driven by instinct.
  • Humans who could conquer their amalgamate by force of will would retain their sanity, but would likely be unstable. These beings would likely be driven by self-preservation and behave like human Floweys most likely.
  • Humans who could make peace with their amalgamate would probably be the most stable of the three possible variants. These would likely be humans who had a history with monsters and more likely to seek reconciliation.

This variance would create humanoid monsters ranging in behavior from zombies, to werewolves, to more intelligent beings borderline vampiric in nature.

Whether or not these beings are as indestructible as amalgamates, I don’t know for sure. However these are physical beings infused with magic, like Flowey, and like Flowey they probably can be killed (it would likely be very hard but doable.)

But all this is speculation, right? It has no direct effect on the story as it is…
Or does it?

Legends say that those who climb the mountain never return.

How did those legends exist in the year 201X when the only signs we see of humans falling into the Underground are all related to incidents after the first fallen child in that exact year?

What if someone or someone(s) were guarding the mountain? Keeping humans from the Underground? Humans who were not children, humans who could have hurt the monsters sealed inside. Humans who could not be let into the Underground and risk undoing a plan hundreds of years in the making, perhaps?

Even so, something was making the humans who climbed the mountain before the fallen children disappear, for a very long time…

And on a final note consider this: 

There is another mountain.

If humans sealed the monsters we knew of in one mountain, why not seal these new monsters in the other one?