Thursday, March 30, 2006

THE LETTERS: Volume II


Dear Producers of Black.White:
You really could have done something special here. Your show could have drawn millions wanting to peek across that race barrier. I'm no prophet, but I'd guess that normal, middle-class Americans, both white and black, want to see life, racism, hardships and benefits through each other's eyes. But you didn't care about the profound experiment. Oh no. Just like every other reality show you bowed to the pressure of conflict and chaos. You followed the Hollywood mantra. It's just not good reality programming unless someone yells and screams and acts stupd so you had to put the two families in the same house and stoke the flames didn't you?

And what could be worse? I don't want to call racism after the two episodes I've seen but from this whitey jew's perspective, you put a normal, calm, sociable and collected black family alongside some crazy white people. The parents have negative social skills, no tact, no class, and no one helping them through these issues in any meaningful way. And for the record, I don't know one person who thinks bitch is a term of endearment.

The black family manages to get along great, staying calm and making interesting insights into racial pressures. and if anyone gives hope to the show it's the kids, who seem to be a litle more willing to amek genuine efforts and to blur the race lines without patting themselves on the back each time they do it.

Touchy subject warning: Sometimes I feel like the white people in the show were cast to fill their own racial stereotype. I have no idea who headed up casting, what they were searching for and what their racial inclinations are, but of the two episodes I've seen, I feel embarrassed for the white people. I'm not embarrassed because they represent me as a white male, but embarrassed in the same way I'm embarrassed for anyone who makes a fool of themself over and over with unrelenting ambivalence.

What could have been a grand experiment, both for television and for America, has been ruined by producers and casting agents who only want to stoke the flames and play in the ashes.

Anyone else watch? What did you think?

2 Comments:

Anonymous db said...

I would tend to agree with what you're saying. I really really looked forward to this show when I first heard about it. But in execution it doesn't seem to adress racial issues so much as the interpersonal conflict provoked by Carmen being stupid.

5:05 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i just wanted to say that i pretty much read your blog all the time... when i'm around at least, and when you write. oh, and i enjoy it.
your's most sincerely, elizabeth

7:49 PM  

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