Wednesday, October 21, 2015

5 Shows Starring People of Color (That Are Not Scandal, HTGAWM, and Empire) You Should Be Watching

There has been a lot of talk about the abundance of people of color on network tv today (and white responses to the rise of black and brown and tan faces on their televisions), but there has not been much talk about the shows, outside of Scandal, Empire and How To Get Away With Murder, starring people of color or why you should be watching them. So I decided to make a list for you tv watchers because my gums are getting very tired from the spreading the news about these great shows via the words from my mouth. Grab your remote, set your dvr, and check out these shows.

1) black-ish (airs Wednesdays 9:30pm EST/8:30pm CT on ABC)

Andre 'Dre' Johnson (Anthony Anderson) has a great job, a beautiful wife, Rainbow (Tracee Ellis Ross), four kids and a colonial home in the 'burbs.  But has success brought too much assimilation for this black family? With a little help from his dad (Laurence Fishburne), Dre sets out to establish a sense of cultural identity for his family that honors their past while embracing the future. black-ish stars Anthony Anderson as Dre, Tracee Ellis Ross as Rainbow, Yara Shahidi as Zoey, Marcus Scribner as Andre Jr., Miles Brown as Jack, Marsai Martin as Diane and Laurence Fishburne as Pops.
Good for: those who are looking for a modern day The Cosby Show-esque comedy that focuses on the lives of black families trying to thrive, fit in, and maintain their cultural identities in suburbia. 

2) Survivor's Remorse (airs Saturdays 9:30pm EST/8:30pm CT on Starz)

"Survivor's Remorse" follows the life of Cam Calloway (played by Jessie T. Usher) a hard-working young basketball star who is thrust into the limelight after signing a huge contract with a pro team in Atlanta. In the second season, we see Cam and his cousin and confidant Reggie Vaughn, played by Ronreaco Lee, continue trying to navigate Cam’s meteoric rise. From business deals to relationships and friendship, the two confront the challenges of balancing the needs of family with the rewards and responsibilities generated by their newfound wealth and fame. Cam, Reggie and the unforgettable group of characters that is the Calloway clan wrestle with the rewards and pitfalls of stardom, love and loyalty. The series is executive produced by Mike O’Malley, LeBron James, Tom Werner, Maverick Carter and Paul Wachter and the cast also includes Mike Epps, Tichina Arnold, Teyonah Parris and Erica Ash.

Good for: those who are looking for an adult (i.e., raunchy and straight funny no chaser) sports-themed comedy. Mike Epps, Tichina Arnold, and Erica Ash are hilarious.

3) Sleepy Hollow (airs Thursdays 9pm EST/8pm CT on FOX)

    Ichabod Crane awakes from the throes of death 250 years in the future where he must solve a mystery dating back to the founding fathers. Due to a blood spell cast on a battlefield during the Revolution, the infamous headless horseman is revived along with Crane, and the murderous rider embarks on a bloody rampage in present-day Sleepy Hollow. Ichabod realizes that he must act quickly, for the headless horseman is only the first of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Detective Abbie Mills, a woman familiar with supernatural experiences, forms a bond with Crane as they try to stop an increasingly vicious cycle of evil.
Good for: those who are looking for sci-fi/fantasy dramas that have touches of literary and historical references. In other words, good for those into nerdy things.

4) Being Mary Jane (airs Tuesdays 9pm EST/8pm CT on BET)

Mary Jane Paul is a one-woman show: a successful TV news anchor, entirely self-sufficient--an all-around powerhouse who remains devoted to a family that doesn't share her motivation. As Mary Jane juggles her life, her work and her commitment to her family, we find out how far she’s willing to go to find the puzzle pieces that she, and society, insist are missing from her life as a single Black female.

Good for: those who are looking for an hour-long drama that focuses on the triumphs, trials, and beautifully flawed realities of being a single Black professional woman in America.

5) Jane The Virgin (airs Mondays 9pm EST/8pm CT on The CW)

When Jane Villanueva was a young girl, her grandmother, Alba, convinced her of two things: telenovelas are the highest form of entertainment, and women must protect their virginity at all costs. Now age 23, Jane is a driven young woman studying to become a teacher, nursing a dream to be a writer, and supporting herself with a job at a hot new Miami hotel. All the years of watching telenovelas with the two women who raised her – her sexy, young-at-heart mother, Xiomara, and her still-devout grandmother Alba – have given Jane a slightly unrealistic view of romance. Still, she is determined not to make the same mistake her mother made – becoming an unwed mother at 16. Jane has managed to find a wonderful fiancĂ©: a handsome, hard-working detective named Michael, who loves her enough to accept her detailed timeline for their future together and even her insistence on “saving herself” until they’re married. All of Jane’s meticulous life plans are turned upside down, however, when she sees her doctor for a routine check-up and is accidentally artificially inseminated with a specimen meant for the patient in the next room. Unbeknownst to her, the specimen belongs to Rafael, a reformed playboy and cancer survivor, who is not only the new owner of the hotel where Jane works but also a former summer crush of hers. A few weeks later, the unsuspecting Jane is faced with the most important decisions of her life. Will she continue with the pregnancy? How can she explain the situation to her fiancĂ© and family? And what should she do about the wishes of the biological father, Rafael, and his scheming wife Petra? Though she has always tried to be the good girl who does the right thing, Jane’s life has suddenly become as dramatic and complicated as the telenovelas she has always loved.

Good for: those who are looking for a telenovela-esque comedy that features a young woman dealing with love, family, career, and an unexpected pregnancy.