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Why Did It Take BET So Long To Tell A Story With A Queer Lead?

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From their panel during Outfest's The OutFronts, Cierra "Shooter" Glaude (Director, TWENTIES); Brian Jordan Jr. (Actor, Tyler Perry's SISTAS), Brittany Inge (Actor, MS. PAT) discuss the representation of Black LGBTQ+ characters on television.
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ask you all why did it take Bt so long to tell a story with a queer lead because that's a real question here. Okay. Fear, that's a great question. Yeah. Fear is a great answer. I think um that that answer, fear connects me to my answer which is audience, which is community, which is fear in the black community, um lack of acceptance, right? In the black, come on, okay, I'm Jill scouting myself a lack of acceptance in the black community for whatever reason, reasons here, reasons based and belief systems, reasons based in change. Yeah, so that's my answer. Yeah. And then it just took people you know, stirring the pot and shaking the table hard enough for them to just be like okay, like you can have a seat at the table and it's like good, we're gonna put up a couple of seats actually right, I will say this and it's understandable because I think the fear is like I said here and I was done, but I want to make sure that we that I am clear about the fear. I think that there is always fear with change, especially in the african american community because we've been so disappointed and so despaired for so long that holding on to something that we found success in is safe. Um and I believe that with the t being the network that it has been for so long and being able to hold this torch that nobody else has been able to hold, I think that the carefulness that they've taken is based in understanding how hard it was to get to where we are today. And I do also believe that it takes in any business um an example and a a strong force to come in and and be lean away who has won an Emmy somewhere else where she can bring her reputation with her and develop something that can hold that will do well. And then it charts the course for more things like that. So I'm just grateful for 20 is grateful for Lena to kick this thing off. Great for Tyler who has this huge fan base and who can drop a character like Maurice in the middle of something, you know, and it works, it has to work and so it's uh fear but we're overcoming it, we're overcoming it. Yeah, it's like blowing the door off a safe out there now. And I know I wanna why why why have shows like you know twenties and others on tv that portray positive but often those complicated relationship dynamics between black queer friends and friend groups, why has that now become so popular? Why do you think we're gravitating towards that because we haven't seen it before? You know what I'm saying? It's like it's new and it's fresh and it's it's things that we talked about on our own and so getting to see other people talk about, it's like okay yeah, like we're here now, we get that, you know, and it's again just important to keep those conversations going and just to find all of the nuances and the balance in the multifaceted this that are these conversations that we have, wow, you know, we're all out here just chilling and being goofy like we do on twenties, you know what I'm saying? And so it's not always about like these tough conversations that it's like a pill pocket, you can pepper those things in and but it's again to like not make spectacle of it. Like this is not the struggle, like the struggle is just everyday life like everybody else goes through. Like my phone bill is, do you know what I'm saying? And it's just like that not my personal uh I got you bro I love you need no I agree with Sierra and I would also just say representation and I know that's the word that gets thrown around a lot especially these days representation matters but it really does and people are seeing themselves and they've been buying and dying to see themselves for so long. And so I think that's why you're we're getting a lot of feedback and audience interest in these types of stories because people are finally seeing themselves represented on screen instead of having to watch other people's stories. And you know the escapism of watching somebody who doesn't look at all like them. Now they're able to see characters who actually look like them or people, they know people in their neighborhood people and their families and that's really important as well.