The Persistent Issue of Black Representation on Television and Why More Roles Won’t Fix A Thing

- By Bossip Staff Categories: A "Lil Positivity", Bolitics, Did You Know

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Television and Movie Actress Regina King has penned an op-ed piece about the lack of color during this year’s daytime Emmy’s Awards show. Talk about stating the obvious. However King, who is probably most known for her roles in 227 and The Boondocks, struggled immensely to draft this said piece regarding the number of people of color mentioned, celebrated or honored in the history of the televised Emmys.

Up to and including this year, there have been only 53 non-white actors nominated for Emmys out of nearly 1,000 possible nominations in the top four acting categories for drama and comedy, she said. And to add insult to racial injury, Rutina Wesley from the HBO Vamp-series “True Blood”, who attended this year’s Emmys, walked the red carpet with the caption, “Regina King enters the 62nd Emmys,” displayed under her for the television viewing audience.

Read More at The Atlanta Post


  • baybaybay

    Regina is right about the lack of roles for black actors but with all these production companies that are black owned there should be more black films produced and if they make money at the box office the powers that be in hollywood will take notice.

    • Nicki

      Not just black actors, but all minorities. How many Asians, Latinos, Native Americans, and Indians do you see on television. They are usually the token “minority.”

      I agree with what the person written before me. We do not need a script written specifically for an black actress. Why couldn’t the lead in True Blood be a minority. I do not want network television write a role for a minority base on stereotypes. Now, NBC is coming out with a show called “Outsource” that may offend and ridicule the Indian community. It’s great that they are trying to make light of a sensitive issue; but it may just enhance people misconception around the Indian American community.

    • 1TruDiva w/the PlatinumVocals--I'm just too good to be true!!!

      Regina’s made some good points but in my opinion, not only should there be more roles established for black actors/actresses but just as important–the TYPE of roles should broaden, too!

      Roles like Hawthorne (Jada Pinkett) instead of even Regina’s two characters in The Boondocks. AS much as I like her as an actress, her role(s) just perpetuate the stereotypes of black people.

  • ci

    show your love and respect to our military heroes.

    ‘ ___________blackmilitaryfriends.c-/0m ____________

    show your love and respect to our military heroes.

  • Matinigal

    Black has more air time than any other minority in the business. I’ld like to see more, but thats how is works in hollyhood.

  • Matinigal

    I support blk shows if its interesting and deserve my precious time. But dont expect me to support blk comedy that are stupid, have no base, and buffoonery, just because the actors are blk.

  • if anything be noble

    But see, matinigal, Black televised buffoonery makes white people feel strong and powerful and superior. White people have always needed to feel superior in this country as soon as they stepped off the boat, so please know there will be plenty of Black buffoonery on tv to keep whitefolk feeling complete and entertained and happy with themselves. But conversely, also know there’s not going to be much Black strength and capability on television. This challenges stereotypes and makes them uneasy. You’ll be hard pressed to find a complex Black CEO character, for example, because whitefolks already go through enough mental gymnastics trying to figure out how a Black man came from nowhere to become the most powerful person in the world and why their kid is upstairs shouting JayZ lyrics, so, buffoonery and a Bud Light are just about right down their alley at the end of a long day in this America.

  • if anybody be noble

    Another thing white television does it allows white people to create and package this image of themselves as being intelligent and beautiful and advanced and wise and intact and witty and together. Just look at the pictures of the Little Rock Nine trying to integrate the high school 50 years ago. In reality, in those pictures, white girls were spitting on the Black kids and calling them n—–. But on television at the time, white girls were soft and precious and fluffy and hula-hooping and using words like “dreamy” and “groovy.” So, tv protects and advances their image and gives them a forum to recreate themselves as a good, wonderful people. Who wouldn’t want that? They get to be Whitepeople 2.0 through the wonders of television where everybody else is on welfare and strung out and crazy and poor and ugly. That’s the game. Elevate their image. Demote yours.

    • don't ask

      That is so true. I always looked at it as a money thing, but the point that you made is so right!

  • if anything be noble

    … And let’s not forget —- the whole idea of tv is to sell stuff! So, since white people LOVE THEM SOME POLLS … LOVE. THEM. … and since they have life down to a science … (They probably call folk and ask them… “Soooo, let’s say on a scale from 1 to Charlie Sheen— how mad would you say you’d be if you saw 3 Black people talking together during an episode of How I Met Your Mother? Charlie Sheen?)… but yeah anyway, they have this tv thing down to a science and they tell the average American what to see and buy. So— since they’re trying to sell their stuff and— since they give the people what the people want (and seeing Blackfolk is not high up on the average American’s priority list and doesn’t exactly relax them) … well, then, uh— buhbye Blackfolk. Yall gots to go.

  • if anything be noble

    @ don’t ask… I fully agree with you. Yep. Total money thing. The point of tv is to sell, sell, sell, so if tv can make white people feel good enough about themselves to buy,buy,buy… then mission accomplished. KaCHING. (We, on the other hand, will buy anything from anybody regardless of how badly they treat us, so until we get to the point where we shut down this economy until SNL stops putting white people in Blackface to portray Black people and decides they can hire ONE Black female comic instead of having a Black man play Whoopi Goldberg, white tv will never stop.) So, yes. It’s a total money game.

  • Allie

    I agree with @if anything be noble, hollywood is all about making money,it’s about what is marketable on screen and what will make the most money sadly some white people don’t always want to see us on screen, and thus far they’re getting what they want

  • how long

    IT TAKES A WOMAN…… this is why its going to come a time when we as a race has got to circle the wagons. and headem up and move em out. looking to one another investing in one another cause all we have is us. don’t let the others fool you. you see how they are treating the 1st black president. its time people.

  • if anything be noble

    *constant* barrage… Ok done. I’m just sayin… Tv is a heckuva medium. Don’t sleep it… :)

    • Sha

      Just read all of your comments, very insightful! I enjoyed it. :)

  • sportstalk23

    Your right about other minorities not many Asians or Latinos on I’m not counting their own networks,also no Native Americans period in terms of representation
    My favorite actresses on Grey’s Anatomy are the three minority ladies Chandra,Sandra and Sara
    Its the same issue Victoria Rowell was saying about soap operas hardly any black characters and no one of color behind the scenes in terms of writing and producing
    But look at soaps these days dropping like flies anyway


    Both swirl loving Regina King and white d!ck loving Rutina Wesley are irrelevant..

    Next time, get a relevant strong black woman like Angela Ba$$ett to be the face of this type of propaganda not a homo-erectus.

  • Divatude

    We all look alike, right? start the Bemmys next year, King! The Black Emmys. I aint one to bragg, but dont say you didnt hear from me first. ;D


    Maybe Regina needs to get her swirl on with the white male TV execs and begin to “EXPLORE HER OPTIONS” outside the emmys’s….

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