I am not a television person at all. In fact I miss my favorite shows unless I’m reminded that they’re on. Since my ultimate favorite show, “Girlfriends” left The CW, television has been almost nonexistent in my life. Well, except for Tuesday nights at 10 p.m. My new guilty pleasure is watching “The Tiny and Toya Show”. I’m quite sure that I will also be sitting in front of my TV when “The Frankie and Neffie Show” airs.
When I watch these shows I don’t see people like Tiny, Toya, Frankie, and Neffie as “ghetto” or as “coons”. I see them as women who have been through trials and tribulations just like every other normal human being.
After watching an episode of “The Tiny and Toya Show” as well as a preview of “The Frankie and Neffie Show” I started to think. I thought about how tons of people are calling these shows “coonery”. BET has actually picked up more flack than they already have gotten due to the airing of these two TV shows. I think that some Black people specifically tend to categorize TV shows that depict people who would be considered “ghetto” as “coonery”.
When I watch these shows I don’t see people like Tiny, Toya, Frankie, and Neffie as “ghetto” or as “coons”. I see them as women who have been through trials and tribulations just like every other normal human being. I also see courageous women who are strong and liberated enough to share their trials and tribulations with millions of viewers. Regardless of the fact that these women may be loud, “country”, emotional, and dramatic I see the beauty in their struggles.
What I also see in these women is a few of my family members. I can name several people in my family who hold some of these same characteristics. I also can name several people in my family who have been through some of the same things that they have been through. What’s funny is I know I’m not the only one. So my question is why do we sometimes peg a show that easily reflects some of our closest loved ones or people that we know as “coonery”?
Is it that these shows sometimes hit too close to home? Or could it be that these shows depict parts of ourselves that we often try to reject?