white people

Creator – Justin Simien

Starring: Logan Browning, Brabdon Bell, Antoinette Robinson, Ashley Featherson, Marque Richardson, Deron Horton, John Patrick Amedori.

Dear White people has got the greenlight for a second season and it is not hard to see why.

The show centers around college students at the fictional Winchester University and all of the racial diversity. Stylistically the way each episode plays out is unique. The plot revolves around a campus party that involves caucasian students dressing up and painting their faces black that is shut down by the upset african american students. Then focuses on the events that precede prior to and after the party. Each episode is seen through the viewpoint of a different character. So multiple versions of the same scene may play out at different times in different episodes.

The main character Sam White (Logan Browning) a college radio show host who has an issue with the lack of diversity on campus and speaks on racial issues in a very open and direct manner. Even though she may come across as sweet and innocent being an advocate for change, she also has a deviant side. As much as she wants things to be different she has a way of getting herself into precarious situations based on her ulterior motives.

Multiple types of african american personalities are represented such as the consciously woke, the jock, the bad and bougee, the activist, the foreign exchange etc. I think the biggest difference from the movie as opposed to the show is the series mainly touches on viewpoints within african americans themselves as opposed of the view from other races. They explore interesting scenarios such as what is the proper protocol for when you are listening to your favorite rap song with your caucasian friends and the N Word comes up. Or african american women having insecurities about their natural hair. There are also some great clever odes to classic black cinema such as Do the Right Thing and A Different World if you pay attention. And Nia long is timeless that is all.

An aspect that I find interesting is that being an african american male there are situations I could relate to such as someone turning the other direction at an atm when you approach or people automatically thinking that you are an athlete. I think the scenarios are presented in a cool and humorous way. Even though this show explores racial stereotypes in a comedic manner it still gets very dramatic in tone when it really needs to be.

If you are a different race other than african american I wonder how this show will be perceived. Such as will some of the concepts come off as understandable and sympathetic or just come off as whiny and complaining. I myself am willing to openly admit that I would not know how to handle a Dear Black People from the perspectives of different races.

To those who are cautious of viewing because of the controversial title I would definitely say don’t pay attention to the name and give it an honest watch.  I do believe viewers will find the topics very interesting and enlightening as well. Season 1 of Dear White People is streaming now on Netflix.

-Caleb Harris