Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Oxygen Network Cancels Controversial Reality Show

I swore I wasn’t going to write anything more about this show, ‘cause I am all Shawty Lo’d out, but once I heard the official news, I thought I should close the loop.

So, 40,000 protesters have had their way, and All My Babies’ Mommas is kaput!

I don’t care.

Well, I care a little bit. Because I just can’t understand how, with all the filth and violence that’s on television, folks could get so up in arms about this show.

Shawty Lo does not speak for me. Shawty Lo is not my representative. As Tami Winfrey Harris wrote, black America is not Shawty Lo. And, if those on “reality” television were our representatives—oh boy, the entire human race should be ashamed. 

I'd have preferred the show to air and then go down in flames when no one watched it.

But what’s that you say? People might have actually watched it? Oh, was that the problem?

Now, I could be wrong. It occasionally happens. But I can’t help wondering if what motivated this “controversy” more than anything else is fear. And that would be … the fear some of us have of “looking bad” in front of non-African Americans, be they white or other people of color. As though removal from the air of one tacky show could eradicate racism. Good luck with that.

But more than anything, I guess I’m just discouraged that we seem to be fighting the wrong battle. The ship has sailed. The bell has rung. There’s a huge market for trash television, and as trash goes, All My Babies’ Mommas didn’t seem that bad to me.

I love supernatural-thriller-mystery shows and was all pumped to see American Horror and then sat in horror, jaw dropped, while Dylan McDermott, an actor I actually admired to that point, appeared on the screen, apparently um ... pleasuring himself, all excited after catching his housemaid doing the same, in two fast-moving (although not fast-moving enough) back-to-back scenes that left me feeling like I had been sucker punched and had me reaching for the remote while shouting, “Next!” right before “Come quickly, Jesus!”

Yes, the storyline was intriguing, and the show was well directed and well acted. Yeah, okay. It was still vile and disturbing, and oh that’s right, this here was “art,” while Shawty Lo and his family are just “low-class ghetto Negroes” trying to make a quick buck by appealing to the lowest common denominator and shaming us all in the process. Hmmm …

Goodbye, All My Babies’ Mommas and hello Fat Girl Revenge and Shotgun Weddings!

Maybe my son (the cynical one, I won’t name him) is right, and Oxygen never intended for All My Babies’ Mommas to air—they just wanted to get black folks arguing with each other. 

Now that would be a story …

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