recently in tvland

I have become totally slightly addicted to television since the start of the fall season.  Of course I can’t help but notice every time biracial, mixed, or interracial coupling comes up, which isn’t very often.  So far, I’ve only been satisfied by one show.  And it should come as no surprise to anyone that Jennifer Beals was involved in that one.


What you need to know:  Attorney Zoe (Jennifer Beals) enlists the help of her “human lie detector” ex-husband Cal (Tim Roth) in proving the innocence of a black college football star accused of statutory rape by a white high school girl.

Zoe to Cal: (The) ADA is a pompous a** who isn’t beyond charging just based on race. That is why Cabe McNeil is facing trumped up sex charges.”

Cal: “Do you really want to defend this guy, or are you just taking this personally because of the black and white leaves on the family tree?”

Zoe: “Both.”

several scenes later….

Zoe to afore mentioned Pompous ADA: “Because he’s black and slept with a white girl he belongs in jail?…Come on I know your track record and I know how you treat black defendants. And I know how you treated me in law school. I had one white parent and one black parent. I was the only brown student there, and you just looked down your nose at me all three years”

Toward the end of the episode he tells her the reason he had a problem with her in school was because she made law review and he didn’t.  She apologizes.

It was perfect!  Because it’s not always about race, but when you’re the brown person that could easily and justifiably (based on prior experience) be your first assumption.  Way to go Lie to Me.  And Jennifer Beals.  My assumption here is that she contributed to the way that story was told.

Next up:


What you need to know:  Main character Veronica walks into her parent’s home after work and is startled loudly by her brother.  She notices that their parents are asleep in the living room, prompting her to “shush” him.  He laughs it off and demonstrates how sound asleep they are by yelling shockingly dangerous things like, “Fire!” and even worse…

“Dad! Veronica’s got a new boyfriend and he’s black!”


What you need to know:  In an attempt to save her failing marriage, the wife of Glee Club director Mr. Schuester fakes a pregnancy.

The couple take a private lamaze class during which Mr. Schuester is asked to leave the room for minute.  Mrs. Schuster reveals to the lamaze teacher that she has a troubling secret.  The lamaze teacher’s first guess seems to be the worst thing she could possibly imagine: Is the baby black!?



Here is an example of a missed opportunity.  Wentworth Miller guest starred as a cop helping the SVU team with one of it’s victims.  After discussing the results of a line-up, Wentworth Miller says something that prompts Ice T to tell him that “Not all black people look alike.”  I really wish Miller had said “I know.  I am black people.”  Jennifer Beals would have.  I think.

None of this is earth shattering or anything.  But I think it’s important to note the ways in which “we” are discussed or alluded to.  I am usually disappointed.  It’s that “is the baby black!?” kind of mentality that that guy in Louisiana who will let black people use his bathroom but will not allow interracial couples to wed is plagued by.  I believe that the majority of people think that way.  I’m trying to change that.

re: jennifer beals



Last night I went to hear Jennifer Beals speak at the NY Times Center.  Um….amazing!! I was mere feet away from her.  She was beautiful, radiant, kind, eloquent.  Everything I thought she’d be.  But better.  I got a little emotional when she first walked out.  Jennifer Beals is to me what I seem to have become for a few people.  When I realized I was biracial and that that actually meant something to me and means a lot in this country, I was left feeling a little lost.  I mean here I’d been thinking I knew myself quite well, knew what I wanted, knew where I wanted to go, and all of sudden this paradigm shift had me questioning everything.  I was all fired-up about my discovery, but I didn’t know what to do with it.  Someone suggested I watch The L Word because Jennifer Beals’ character, Bette Porter, was biracial and it was actually a part of the story line.  I watched it and I knew I wasn’t crazy.  I knew that it was ok to embark on this journey.  I knew that who I had an inkling that I really was, well, I really was, and I was not alone.  I saw myself reflected in the world and I had a sense of my right to be.  I learned to say that I’m not “exclusively black” and that phrase has become invaluable.  For these reasons Jennifer Beals is my biracial hero.  Last night put all of that in perspective.  So, if I’ve helped anyone stand firmly in their biracial truth, J.B. is to thank for that.  So grateful!!





Googling “why blacks hate mulattos” also led someone to this blog today.  I would love to hear Jennifer Beals’ opinion on that one.  And I’m a little curious as to what instigated that particular search.

jennifer beals

normal_jb031I can’t believe I’ve had a blog for however long I’ve had this blog, and have not yet mentioned Jennifer Beals. Well, the time has come!  Here is a quote from an article in H Monthly Magazine…

“Once one part of the collective sees themselves represented and is given permission to celebrate their own authenticity, then it helps the rest of the collective to see how everyone is connected,” she reasons. “It behooves all of us to have everyone experience their deepest, most beautiful, most profound and powerful self, because those people are more apt to give their gift to everyone else rather than shudder in fear….There used to be whole realms of people who weren’t talked about—whose very existence didn’t seem worthy subject matter for pop culture. Now that’s starting to change a little bit.” 

I honestly don’t know anything about H Monthly Magazine, but I thoroughly enjoyed the article and my love and admiration for this biracial lady grew maybe like two sizes when I read it.