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Skippy’s Got Some Words About “The Help” August 7, 2011

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Observations, Popular Culture, Racism, Rants.
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Fig. 1: The White Lady’s Burden

I’ve seen commercials for this movie every time I turn on the television. I’d heard about the book, but then when I heard they were making this book into a movie, I knew this would be yet another in a long line of movies that revolve around The White Man’s Burden and/or The Magical Negro.

Figs. 2 & 3: Hollywood loves this shit.

Hollywood loves crap like this because it allows producers of this tripe to think that they’re being all liberal and shit. What pisses me off about “The Help” is that the black women in the movie become the vehicle by which The White Lady achieves self-actualization. To me, it’s the rankest form of Hollywood racism; shitfilms like this make Hollywood whites feel good about themselves (“Look at us! We’re so liberal, we made a movie about them darkies the African Americans and how we helped them not be so backward/forgotten/mistreated! We’re awesome! Let’s give us an Oscar!”); at the end of the day, the movie isn’t about African Americans at all. These movies wind up being about white people…and their burden.

Fig. 4: Starring Emma Stone and a bunch of Black women!


Guess Who’s Back And Begging For Dollars? (A Hit Dog Hollers, Part 7) April 12, 2011

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Observations, Religion.
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Fig. 1: Yep. This fool’s back.

Children, I’ve been slacking. I had stopped paying attention to Fake Bishop Eddie Wrong-As-Hell after I heard that the lawsuit against him by four men was going into arbitration. I assumed that we’d hear some tiny little blurb and then he’d agree to pay out millions of dollars and there’d be nothing more to say.

Well, I guess this jheri-wigged charlatan has to get money somehow in order to pay off those boys, because here he is, distorting the Bible in order to get dollars. What’s this foolishness about “calling all men together to pray”? Honey, you know what I call that? A Friday night at Bulldog’s in Midtown, that’s what. He needs to quit it with this foolishness. But unsurprisingly, this arrogant moron will persist in his nonsense and try to take every dollar he can from any and every besotted Atlantan who is silly enough to still be drinking his flavor of Kool-Aid. Reportedly, attendance at his “church” is down and he’s having to lay off people.

I wonder if he’s cut his own salary?

Mmm, hm.

I Don’t Know Who This “Jawn Murray” Is… October 25, 2010

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Popular Culture, Rants.
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…but I am certain that he is one big fucking idiot who probably needs to get kicked in the teeth posthaste.

Apparently, this fucktard is a “commentator” for the—wait for it—Tom Joyner Morning Show—frankly, it figures that a fool associated with that hot bucket of fail would get on Twitter with this bullshit:

And this…

This imbecile only serves to reinforce my assessment of the Tom Joyner Morning Show as a bastion of fools.

But wait! Being the idiot that he is, once the Internet exploded, he issued an “apology:”

“I understand how things can be misconstrued and taken out of context in the social networking space. My humor has always been a bit irreverent, edgy and sarcastic, but I understand how this particular joke could have offended my sisters with natural hair. I sincerely love Black women and will never, EVER do or say anything to intentionally hurt them. I am truly and humbly sorry.”

So, wait. Is he sorry for making a joke that wasn’t in the least bit “funny” or is he “sorry” that you really sensitive women out there “misconstrued” or took his words out of context? Did this twit bother to read before he tweeted? And let’s be real: if he was sorry on his own, he wouldn’t have issued that second tweet. It was after black women rose up and went after his afflicted ass that he then issued his tepid apology.

And since he’s snapping on black women’s appearances, let’s take a look at this Adonis, shall we?

Fig. 1: Holy fuck! Did he have facial reconstruction after an unfortunate encounter with a volcano?

Well, I can see why he’s all a-bitter about black women not falling to their knees and worshipping the ground upon which Tyler Perry shits horrible movies. He’s probably been rejected more than a crackheaded, stinky job applicant. He’s clearly a stand up guy: first he shuts down his Twitter page and then, after taking to YouTube to “apologize,” makes the apology video a private one that requires an invitation from one Jawn Murray.

What a worthless little weasel.

On Laura Schlesinger August 21, 2010

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Culture, Racism, Rants.
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Fig. 1: Good riddance, you desiccated fossil.

Well, children, I guess I figured I’d weigh in (late, as usual) about radio talk show host Laura Schlesinger’s epic N-word laden rant. I’m not even gonna mention that twit Sarah Palin’s nonsense tweets supporting Schlesinger and invoking the First Amendment—I suppose that First Amendment is only useful in the case of crazy old white women who want to use the N-word and not for Muslims in NYC who want to build a community center/place of worship “near” allegedly “hallowed” Ground Zero. Anyway, I’ve not really paid Schlesinger and her foolishness much attention—after all, she’s said some batshit crazy stuff before.

Fig. 2: If you don’t sex your hubby up right, he’ll leave you! So sayeth Laura.

Isn’t she just a sunbeam for Jesus?

Well, as y’all probably know by now, when an African American woman called in to ask advice about dealing with her white husband’s racist friends, Schlesinger told her, in so many words, that she was being hypersensitive and that if she didn’t want to be offended, she shouldn’t have “married out of her race.”

Y’all! She’s totally a sunbeam for Jesus!

Basically, Schlesinger—I refuse to call her “Dr. Laura” as her Ph.D. in physiology does not in any way qualify her to comment on human behavior or relationships—made this woman’s call all about Laura and her irritation with the use of the N-word in African American culture. Why is she bringing this up as though this problem is something new? This woman didn’t call in to talk about Black culture—if Laura wanted to beef about that, she should have had Aaron McGruder or Bill Cosby or someone else on to discuss that, not hijack this woman’s real concern with her husband’s douchebag friends.

By the by, if you can stomach listening to the full audio of this call, click here to go to Media Matters.org.

Well, after this insane kerfluffle, Schlesinger is pulling the plug on her “show.” But wait! She’s throwing herself up on the cross, because she’s a victim…of…being an insensitive clod?

Fig. 3: The First Amendment applies only to me, not you, so quit whining!

Y’all, reading the transcript of the call is just…wow:

SCHLESSINGER: All right. Thank you very much. Thank you very much. Can’t have this argument. You know what? If you’re that hypersensitive about color and don’t have a sense of humor, don’t marry out of your race. If you’re going to marry out of your race, people are going to say, “OK, what do blacks think? What do whites think? What do Jews think? What do Catholics think?” Of course there isn’t a one-think per se. But in general there’s “think.”

And what I just heard from Jade is a lot of what I hear from black-think — and it’s really distressting [sic] and disturbing. And to put it in its context, she said the N-word, and I said, on HBO, listening to black comics, you hear “nigger, nigger, nigger.” I didn’t call anybody a nigger. Nice try, Jade. Actually, sucky try.

Need a sense of humor, sense of humor — and answer the question. When somebody says, “What do blacks think?” say, “This is what I think. This is what I read that if you take a poll the majority of blacks think this.” Answer the question and discuss the issue. It’s like we can’t discuss anything without saying there’s -isms?

We have to be able to discuss these things. We’re people — goodness gracious me. Ah — hypersensitivity, OK, which is being bred by black activists. I really thought that once we had a black president, the attempt to demonize whites hating blacks would stop, but it seems to have grown, and I don’t get it. Yes, I do. It’s all about power. I do get it. It’s all about power and that’s sad because what should be in power is not power or righteousness to do good — that should be the greatest power.

Well, I think that pretty much says it all, doesn’t it? This clodpoll is imposing upon the caller her views—stripping “Jade” of any agency whatsoever. If the superior (read: white) woman isn’t offended, then the inferior (read: black) woman should “just get over it.” Never mind the history of the word, never mind the internal debates among African Americans about that word, never mind that Schlesinger herself is so out of touch with African American culture that she references “Def Comedy Jam,” a show that doesn’t quite have the same relevance to black folks that it had a decade ago, and never mind that this woman shouldn’t be giving advice to preschoolers much less adults. What’s infuriating here is Schlesinger’s condescending “need a sense of humor.” It is the “height” of white privilege for someone like her to tell a black person—any black person—to “get a sense of humor” when it comes to a word as ugly as that.

I don’t suppose she gets all warm and fuzzy when someone hurls any number of anti-Jewish epithets, does she? Yeah, Laura Schlesinger. I’ll get a sense of humor about white people using the N-word when it doesn’t lead to this:

Or this:

Or this:

Oh, Jesse. July 12, 2010

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Observations, Popular Culture, Racism.
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Y’know, there’s something sad about watching a person who was once in his or her prime try to maintain relevance in a world that has moved on. They flail about, trying to recapture past glories, all the while tarnishing those past glories with present foolishness.

Exhibit A.

A person like that will usually latch onto a “hot” trend and try to insert him or herself…usually to tragic or hilarious results. Well, children, while you may think that this is about the above pictured Whitney Houston, it’s not. I’m not talking about Miss Houston…I’m talking about Jesse Jackson. In the wake of the “destruction” left by LeBron “Put A Ring On It!!” James’s departure from the Cleveland Cavaliers, Cavs owner Dan Gilbert wrote a very bitter little missive in which he accused James of narcissism and “cowardly betrayal.” Apparently, no one in Cleveland or at Nike fed into a culture of narcissism which Gilbert ascribes to James.

Fig. 1: Can’t you just SMELL the humility?

Anyway, Jesse Jackson decided that THIS was an affront which needed an immediate response. According to the Associated Press,

Jesse Jackson criticized Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert on Sunday, saying Gilbert sees LeBron James as a “runaway slave” and that the owner’s comments after the free-agent forward decided to join the Miami Heat put the player in danger…”He speaks as an owner of LeBron and not the owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers,” the reverend said in a release from his Chicago-based civil rights group, the Rainbow PUSH Coalition. “His feelings of betrayal personify a slave master mentality. He sees LeBron as a runaway slave. This is an owner employee relationship — between business partners — and LeBron honored his contract.”

Messages were left Sunday night seeking comment from Gilbert, the Cavaliers and James.

Jackson also called Gilbert’s comments an attack on all NBA players and said the owner should face a “challenge” from the league and the players’ association.

You have got to be kidding me. Of all the things in this society that are of great import to African Americans, I don’t think LeBron James and when and how he left the Cavs and some petulant, whiny owner who’s just trying to score points with Cavaliers season ticket holders rates. Did Jesse know that one of the police officers involved in the Sean Bell shooting is suing Bell’s estate? Did Jesse know that Johannes Mehserle, the Oakland cop who shot an unarmed black man in the back, was convicted of only involuntary manslaughter–by an all white jury?? Hell, did Jesse know that idiotard Chris Brown is still drawing breath and making an ass out of his fool self?

As a mentor of mine once told me, “You have to choose your battles.” You have to choose the battles which are larger and more important. Somehow, I don’t think whining about what some whiny basketball team owner whines about a player constitutes something important—especially when everybody and their blind grandmother knew that James would ditch the Cavs the nanosecond free agency hit. I don’t think MLK and Malcolm X and Fannie Lou Hamer and Ella Baker and every nameless black man and woman who suffered and protested and risked their very lives did so so some washed up, over and out civil rights “leader” could go chasing after utterly unimportant nonsense.

If Jesse wants to go after the NBA, then go after how both the NBA and NFL infantilize their players. Go after them for creating and fostering a culture of narcissism coupled with a culture of infantilization in which allegedly grown-ass men get paid millions but don’t get any kind of real help when in college with career decisions and advice on managing money. Go after college sports for creating and nurturing a slave mentality among players–many of whom come from impoverished backgrounds and don’t have the wherewithal to cope with the kinds of demands placed on them by the sports-entertainment complex and their “friends,” hangers-on and family who will expect a ride on a gravy train.

Choose your battles, Jesse. This ain’t one of ’em.

Jesus Take The Wheel! Tyler Perry Rumored To Fire Staff After “Boondocks” Episode June 29, 2010

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Humor, Popular Culture.
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Fig. 1: The Queen Is Not Amused

Children, it seems that Tyler Perry does NOT have a sense of humor about himself…especially when Aaron MacGruder sets his sights on him and makes fun of him in his cartoon “The Boondocks.” In an episode entitled “Pause” a Tyler Perry-ish guy named Winston Jerome hires Granddad to be in his play, “Ma Dukes Finds A Man.” Jerome is surrounded by a harem of hot men slathered in baby oil and is a deeply conflicted homosexual. I’m going to a call him a cuckoosexual. We’ll see if it catches on. Anyway, what’s going on is that Jerome is essentially running a cult of personality based on his wildly popular Christian chitlin circuit plays in order to score hot guys.

Now, if you haven’t seen the episode, go here and watch it in all it’s wonderfully snarky gloriousness.

Well, children, according to gossip blogger Carlton Jordan, Miss Mr. Perry was so enraged about the satirical slaying, he fired his staff!

Word on the streets is the recent ’Boondocks’ episode, that mocked everything TP hit a deep nerve with the mogul. Our source claims he’s paranoid and believes it was an inside job – based on the show’s accuracy!!!

Our source also says that Madea is giving pink slips to his entire staff [not the shirtless boy wonders of course] starting Friday – – he wants to control any leaks of information about ”the compound!!”

Well, well, well. I can’t say “he can dish it, but he can’t take it,” because nothing Perry has done has ever been critical of anything in African American life. And lest anyone get shirty about the Perry-ish character being a big flaming ‘mo, the rumors about Tyler Perry’s sexuality have been flying around The Black Community (an LLC with offices in Atlanta, Memphis, Los Angeles, New York, and now, The White House!) for years. Frankly, he sets my gaydar off; and I trust it, because I don’t find him in the least bit attractive. There ain’t no wishing for him to be on “our team”—that boy’s just flaming, as far as I’m concerned. And “Madea” is a way for him to “be” himself without reaping homophobic scorn. And his retrograde, regressive, and, frankly, retarded approaches to The Black Community, LLC to me underscore his cuckoosexuality. He himself so desires a Black Community in which he fits in, he uses his plays and movies to construct a mythical Black Community and inserts himself in as Madea, the crazy yet “wise” and universally beloved matriarch.

Which is all well and good…just don’t make a cartoon making fun of him. Then he loses his shit. Allegedly.

Homophobic Idiots On My Radio June 3, 2010

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Gay and Lesbian Issues, Rants.
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Skippy’s pissed off.

In the mornings, I usually listen to the Tom Joyner Morning Show. I usually find Tom Joyner, Sybil, and J. Anthony to be funny–hell, I even listened to the show during the years in which they had that mushmouthed self-aggrandizing idiot Tavis Smiley on as a commentator/misery pimp. I’ve even ignored their often reductivist, simple-minded assessments of African American life.

Today, however, they went a bridge too far. They had Eddie Levert, the lead singer of the O’Jays and father of the late Gerald Levert on. He released a song that is on a gospel music CD, and the TJMS played it. It’s called, simply, “Why?” and is a hot, wheedling mess. Why, indeed!

I had switched to NPR for a second and when I switched back, the song was in the middle of the following enlightening lyrics: “…men living with men, women living with women; IT JUST AIN’T RIGHT? Whyyyy? Whyyy?” At this point, my blood began to boil—-it wasn’t on full boil, but it was getting there. Anyway, after this stupid “song” was over, Tom and Sybil told him what a lovely, wonderful song it was. They went back to some anecdote about Eddie “saving” Tom from some stupid boating mishap or something…and then in a moment of literal homophobia, Tom and Eddie prattled on about how they loved each other, but NOT IN THAT WAY. Because that would be gay. And that’s totally not what they meant. Because they’re not. gay. Oh, and they laughed and kee-kee’d like they were in fifth grade. Because, you know, making fun of gays and lesbians is FUN.

At that point, my blood was in full on boil.

You know what pissed me off? Tom and Sybil and J. Anthony just let this stupid song pass without comment—-I take that back; their “humorous” commentary at the end of the song was all the comment I suppose I needed. They coddled Levert’s homophobia and told him that he sang a lovely song. Of course, in the Black Community, you don’t mock or criticize gospel music. Hell, NeYo could nasally whine through a Jesus song and everyone would clap their hands off and say dumb shit like, “Oh, he’s so anointed!”

Fig. 1: This idiot cannot actually sing…but don’t tell him that.

No, you don’t criticize gospel music…and you don’t question homophobia and anti-gay rhetoric that falls out of the mouth of a “legendary” singer like Eddie Levert. That would have been too uncomfortable, too “real.” And what happens is people like Tom and Sybil and J. Anthony will have what I call a “Nicodemus moment.” When they (rarely) have an out, black gay person on the show, they then will pay tepid lipservice to equality and so forth.

Oh, wait–they HAVE had a black gay commentator on before. Now, help me understand something here. You have Jeff Johnson of the National Black Justice Coalition straight up saying that there’s a problem in The Black Community concerning homophobia; he doesn’t sugarcoat it. While he doesn’t want to argue about the [fucked up] theology that supports anti-gay discourse, he does want to have an open conversation about homophobia—-he says we have to have open and honest conversation and stop being afraid.

Now, despite the fact that Joyner didn’t enter into any kind of discussion with Johnson about what he said—-it was a commentary, not an on-line discussion with Joyner—-it’s amazing to me that, apparently, NONE of what Johnson said stuck. To me, this is what constitutes a Nicodemus moment—-the heterosexual says to the homosexual, “Sure, I agree with you; you should be free to pursue your happiness, blah, blah, blah.” But when the moment comes to actually stand up and be about something, where are they? In other words, where was Joyner when it mattered? Joyner had an opportunity to engage in this conversation that we so desperately need. Even questioning why they kept using the term “gay” as a pejorative would have been a step—-it may have been a baby step, but it would at least signal something other than the unalloyed bullshit that spewed forth on the radio waves today.

Fig. 2: Imbeciles.

The Dreaded A-word and African Americans May 27, 2010

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Observations, Religion.
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No, I’m not talking about “abortion” and African Americans.

I’m talking about “atheism.”

There is an old canard in America that “the bedrock of the Black Community has been the Black Church.” This canard is so prevalent, you often hear it followed up with the assertion that it was Christianity that sustained black folks through slavery, Jim Crow segregation, lynching, etc. Images of black religiosity are everywhere in African American cultural life. From black Greek-lettered organizations to community organizations to black political life, the shadow of black Christianity looms large. As such, it is expected that a black person will claim Christianity—-even if he or she doesn’t attend a church with any regularity. Even if that person claims Islam (or, to a far, far lesser degree, Buddhism), there’s a comfort in knowing that while they may not be Christian per se, they still maintain monotheistic beliefs.

So, you can probably imagine some of the reactions to black folks who come out and say that they are nonbelievers. As I was driving home from work, I had my radio on the local “R&B” station. In the afternoon, they air the Michael Baisden show. Baisden’s claim to fame has been twofold: one, he’s a nationally syndicated radio talk show host. Two, he’s the author of a few books that, for one reason or another, people seemed to find informational. With book titles like “Never Satisfied: How and Why Men Cheat”, “Men Cry in the Dark”, “The Maintenance Man”, and “God’s Gift to Women,” I’d hazard a guess that he’s famous for the same reason that the newly-reconstituted Steve Harvey is famous again: he’s a misery pimp.

That suspicion is confirmed every time I turn on the radio and listen to as much of his show as I can stand. To let Baisden tell it, black folks are lurching from one crisis to another. In between the misery pimping, he loves to sensationalize black life. He’s a cross between Maury Povich and Al Sharpton—-with virtually none of the redeeming qualities of either.

So, in light of a Reuters report reposted on Huffington Post that said that there are more African Americans who are declaring themselves non religious, Baisden went slightly batshit. As usual, he turned it into a free-for-all of nonsense. He took calls and, for the time that I listened, got at least one caller who made the following dumbass assertions:
1. Black folks who are atheists have forgotten history
2. Religion has supported black folks throughout our history here in America
3. We need religion to combat all the various ills that plague black communities

Really? This is what happens when you let idiots comment on, well, virtually anything. Nine times out of ten, the idiot commenting on whatever topic will proffer some of the most idiotic comments you’ll ever have the displeasure of hearing. The idiot’s first and second argument boils down to this: our parents, grandparents and great-grandparents were Christian and since it worked for them, everyone should still be Christian. The idiot commenter assumes that a knowledge of history would somehow necessitate a religious orientation (an implicitly Christian one, to boot). I’m assuming that the idiot caller is either unaware of or is conveniently forgetting such lovely moments in Christian history like

* The Crusades

Fig. 1: Hey baby, wanna kill some people?

* The Spanish Inquisition

Fig. 2: I bet you weren’t expecting that, were you?

* The Transatlantic Slave Trade

Fig. 3: For you folks in Texas, it’s called the Atlantic Triangular Trade of Puppies, Bunnies, and Sunshine!

Yes, idiot caller, you are right about one thing: a knowledge of history would be quite good.

As to his final point about religion helping to sustain The Black Community (he seemed to be conflating belief in deities with religion)…um, yeah. Okay. Whatevs. But, pray tell, how is believing in the existence of a universe-spanning superintelligence with a very spotty record of interaction with its creation going to get me a job? People who believe in the existence of this universe-spanning superintelligence claim that it is omnipresent, omniscient, and, most importantly, omnibenevolent. In other words, it’s all-loving.

Fig. 4: This is love I can do without.

What irks the living hell out of me when it comes to us folk and religion is that we’ve adopted this hyper-religiosity as a knee-jerk reaction against whites. We’ve so closely tied religion to racial identity, that to think critically about religion (as well as racial identity) is tantamount to a rejection of both. The piece on HuffPo quotes a Church of God in Christ pastor Kenneth Fowlkes as saying, “Humanists are encouraging African Americans to go to hell.”

No, no we’re not, as there’s no such thing as “hell” in the first place.

Nose Jobs and “Real” Housewives: A Rant May 18, 2010

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Observations, Popular Culture, Rants.
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Fig. 1: Look at this fresh hell, and weep.

Children, NeNe Leakes, the alien in the center of the above photograph, did not always look like this. She used to look like this:

Fig. 2: Not looking like an alien.

Granted, she has weave for days, but at least her face looked like it was her face and not like something that I’d expect to see on the planet Romulus. Again, look at what she had done to her face and tell me why. Tell me why she thought that that was a good idea.

See, I don’t know if any of y’all have ever watched The Real Housewives of Atlanta, but here’s what you need to know: the “Real” Housewives franchise is as formulaic as they come. Take four or five overentitled, utterly clueless women, add conspicuous consumption and general infighting and bitchery and stir, gently adding in shopworn stereotypes (racial, gender, class, it really doesn’t matter), and contrived drama and voila! You have yourselves a “Real Housewives” show. Shit, I could do a Real Housewives of Tulsa, Oklahoma and I guarantee you it would be a hit.

The Real Housewives of Atlanta was a response to to the criticism that Bravo didn’t know that there were black folks who greatly desired to famewhore themselves to the lowest bidder just like the white folks in Orange County and New York had. A lowly intern, acting on a tip he’d probably heard the night before while doing shots at Club 57, told his boss that there were upwardly mobile black drama queens in a weird place called Atlanta. But hadn’t Atlanta burned down at some point in the past? They rebuilt it? And there are black people who aren’t poor and in need of liberal whites to get on charter jets and fly down to the South and do some kind of charity benefit for them? The boss said, “Quick! We must turn aside and see this sight!” And so The Real Housewives of Atlanta was born.

The show assembled a rather motley crew of alleged “housewives.” The aforementioned (and nose-jobbed) NeNe Leakes, Sheree Whitfield (she makes fashion! But it’s ugly!), Lisa Wu Hartwell (she also makes fashion! But it’s boring!), Kandi Burruss (she was in Xscape–remember them? Didn’t think so), and the requisite white woman, Kim Zolciak(she…”sings”) were gathered together and told that they were to be “friends.” Like all the other Housewives shows, the women claim to be empowered, independent women. But they’re absolutely not. It’s bizarro world of anti-feminism, a festering cesspool of contrivances and just a plain trainwreck. Usually, there’s one castmember who gets to be the villain or two women who have an ongoing “feud,” because Bravo execs know that if there’s one thing America loves, it’s catfights, because a show of women getting along and actually being empowered would be plain silly!

Fig. 3: Hrm…where’s the cleavage and catfights?

NeNe in the first season was a voice of reason and “realness”(inasmuch as a reality show person can be a voice of reason and realness). She seemed to be comfortable with her voluptuousness and her very big personality. She was kinda like a black, Southern version of Mad Men’s Joan Holloway.

Last season, she still had the sass, but something seemed a bit…off. She was constantly fighting with Kim Zolciak, which left me wondering, “Why?” Why fight with that bargain basement, no-talent, no sense mistress of “Big Poppa”? I mean, if I knew someone who was dating someone—a married someone, no less—who called himself “Big Poppa,” I’d have to question my life choices. Anyway, NeNe wasn’t sassy…she was being mean. And then she started shit with Kandi, the former singer from Xscape and songwriter to actual stars. Kandi was the new NeNe–she actually had a job, and could back her sass up. She had two fights with Kandi…and came off looking straight foolish. FOOL. ISH.

And now this. This nasal abomination. What in the hot hell was this woman thinking? Has she internalized a particular script about “beauty” that told her that having her natural nose was unattractive? Does she think that having that…that…”nose” will bring her closer to being a “beautiful” (read: white) woman? Did she learn nothing from Michael Jackson?

Fig. 4: This picture wounds my soul.

“I Can Do Bad All By Myself,” a Tragedy, by Tyler Perry April 26, 2010

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Popular Culture.
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Make no mistake, I hate Tyler Perry.

Before being introduced to his…unique…style of shitty film making, I had very little to say about Tyler Perry. I had heard of him, but mostly, I’d heard of “Madea.” And as far as that went, I thought, “Well, hell; Flip Wilson had a drag character named Geraldine. What’s new here?”

Figs 1, 2. What’s the difference here?

Having suffered through at least three of Tyler Perry’s shitfests, I think I can now say with complete confidence that Tyler Perry cannot make a good movie. The one movie that appeared to break away from the Madea-and-church model, “The Family That Preys,” was a complete failure that wasted not one but two stellar actresses, failed to present a coherent narrative, and relied upon worn-out presentations of Jezebel, Sapphire, and so forth. I mean, you have a compelling premise about two families tied together by some pretty provocative threads…and you turn it into a harpie-fest? A “moral” narrative wherein a successful (read: total bitch) Black woman is served her comeuppance by the White dude she’s seeing on the side. The Successful Total Bitch is married to a longsuffering Black Man–I mean, there wasn’t two seconds in this movie when the Successful Total Bitch wasn’t putting down her Longsuffering Black Man. I half-expected the LBM to take a hatchet to the STB. I know I would have.

It was then that I began to wonder about all the hype surrounding Tyler Perry. Perhaps this was just a bad movie. Maybe I needed to watch a movie that was made within Perry’s comfort zone: a Madea movie. Well, thanks to Netflix and TBS, I’ve seen a total of four Tyler Perry movies, and three of them Madea-based. The good news: I haven’t killed anyone. Yet. The bad news: I saw four Tyler Perry movies.

So now we come to “I Can Do Bad All By Myself.” It’s what I’ve come to expect in a Tyler Perry movie, and less.

First, the “plot”:

April is a singer. She sings at a club. She sings very well. We then see her with a drink in her hand. Uh-oh! Successful Total Bitch alert!

As we know, any Black woman who drinks must be a Total Bitch. She must be self-centered, egotistical, and plain evil. Naw, she can’t enjoy a little vino now and again. No. She must be massively consumed by alcohol. A total lush. In need of an intervention.

Anyway, the STB in question is dating a married man (of course) who is vaguely menacing. He does all sorts of vile things–aside from sleeping around on his wife. He smokes…

Fig. 1 He smokes, therefore he is evil.

…and he hits on a 16 year old girl and later, attempts to rape her.

Fig. 2 Nope…he really IS evil.

Anyway, before we get to the attempted rape of a 16 year old girl, TP takes us through a very weird “story” wherein Madea discovers three kids in her house. They’ve broken in, and their grandmother hasn’t been around in days. Gee, think she’s dead? Nobody knows where their grandmother is. Um, I’m pretty sure she’s dead. Days later, after the kids have gone to stay with their aunt, the Successful Total Bitch April, no one has heard from the grandmother.

Y’all. She’s dead.

Moving along, being a Successful Total Bitch, April cannot want to take in her dead sister’s kids. Oh, no. Not only can she not want to take them in, she has to be utterly cruel to them. She hates the fuck out of these kids.

Now, let me be honest. I am not crazy about kids. They’re weird little creatures to me. Always have been–even when I was a kid. I didn’t get other kids. Of course, now, I don’t get other adults–par for the course, right? Anyway, if either of my sisters passed away, you can best believe I’d take in my nieces or nephew, my ambivalence about kids be damned. But then again, I live in the real world, not Tyler Perry’s world.

So, Successful Total Bitch not only takes the kids in, but is, through some inconceivable coincidence, forced to take in a Hispanic guy named “Sandino.” He’s a carpenter, and is really, really humble.

Fig. 3 Well, hello!

For some inexplicable reason, Humble Hottie takes a real shine to Successful Total Bitch. Where have I seen this before?

Fig. 4 Diary of a Mad Black Woman Doing Bad All By Herself…Until She Meets Humble Hottie

This is the second TP movie where we first see the Humble Hottie in a horrendous hairdon’t. In “Diary of a Mad Black Woman,” Shemar Moore sported some ridiculous cornrows. It made no sense. Hell, it offended me. This is the way you convey “down to earthiness”? Ratty cornrows that don’t look remotely natural? Right. So, in this movie, Adam Rodriguez shows up in a full beard and massively ratty hair. Fortunately, he shaved that shit. Nevertheless, I think that that’s Perry’s go-to visual for the Humble Hottie. The Humble Hottie must look a hot fugly mess. So you know that he’s humble. Even though he’s totally a hottie.

Blah, blah, blah, we finally find out that the grandmother died. She died on the bus.

Wait. Are you fucking kidding me? She died on a fucking city bus? Did Tyler Perry watch some crazy ass news report about someone dying on a bus and think, “I’ve gotta work that into my next movie!”? I bet he did.

More blah, blah, blah, Humble Hottie invites Successful Total Bitch to church. Oh, here we go. Here’s the fucked up sexist shorthand for you in case you missed it:
Humble Hottie: goes to church, isn’t really concerned about his appearance even though he’s totally hot, loves kids, is subjectively better looking than the man you’re currently fucking. Did I mention he goes to church? Did you get it? The hot guy goes to church.
Successful Total Bitch: doesn’t like kids, cares about her career, and doesn’t go to church.

So anyway, the Successful Total Bitch, through a conveniently placed montage of the grandmother getting on the bus and then dying, decides to go to church with the Humble Hottie, but her conversion from Successful Total Bitch to Good Black Woman doesn’t fully take.

Which brings us back to this:

Y’all. Child molestation in Black communities is a serious problem. It’s often a “dirty” secret that gets hushed up for years and leads to all sorts of self-destructive behaviors. Child molestation does not need to be a plot point in a movie that gets us to an over-the-top “revelation” that the STB had also been molested by her mother’s boyfriend and that her mother didn’t believe her. What? What the damn–?

I didn’t have time to fully contemplate the fucked upedness of this plot twist, as we were soon whisked to a scene stolen straight out of “The Color Purple.”

Fig. 5 Steven Spielberg did reconciliation better. Way better.

So, April is…doing something. She hears the church choir singing a song that her mother loved. She then remarks that her mother always knew when to show up. Her mother. The same woman who didn’t believe her when she said she’d been molested by her mother’s boyfriend–good lookin’ out, Mom! And then, out of the blue, Humble Hottie shows up (he’d left her earlier) and declares his undying love for her. And voila! Successful Total Bitch is now the Good Black Woman.

Rant: If you’re going to steal from one of the most beloved movies of all time, at least do it in a way that isn’t utterly fucking stupid. In “The Color Purple,” Shug Avery hearing a song that she used to sing was a powerful motivator to get her back into the church and reconcile with her father. It was a powerful scene–I still bawl my eyes out every time I see it. Yeah, it’s cliche, but it’s cliche that’s done well. In Tyler Perry’s clumsy hands, it’s cliche employed not in service of April reconciling herself to herself, but of April reconciling with a man who, just one scene prior, had left her (after she had, basically, told him to buzz off). It’s as subtle as an F-5 tornado. In Tyler Perry’s clumsy hands, it’s a showcase for Gladys Knight (playing a rather annoying Church Lady) and Marvin Winans (playing a rather annoying Church Pastor).

And then the newly transformed Good Black Woman gets married to the Humble Hottie and then the movie is over.

I guess she let the kids stay with her, or something.

Oh, and can someone please tell me why Mary J. Blige is in this movie?