March Madness: Lit Black Women

April’s showers and relentless humidity that destroys our curls is less than a day away. Thus, it’s only right that we quickly reminisce over the great weather and hair March blessed us with and, oh yeah, our celebration of WOMEN.

Throughout the month many women shared mixed feelings about the celebration, and it’s “inclusiveness” of all women. There were those still furious about some of our liberal white sisters’  acceptance of President Dump Truck [<-cause he’s full of sh**] and others enraged by society’s response (or lack thereof) to the girls missing in the D.C. area. These reasonable frustrations sparked numerous conversations and led to many advocates taking to their blogs to offer their critique of oppressive systems, the current administration, and race in the United States. Although I support the need for offering social critiques that seek to be corrective, I’ll push myself to stay true to the task of celebrating women instead of going on a tangent.

We celebrate our histories.
Our differences.
Our similarities.
Our passions.
Our regrets.
And our attempts to continue striving and surviving.

It’s difficult to resist being consumed by our frustrations of the day, but women have always been masters of dualisms. We are both the leader and the follower. The mother and the friend. A savior and a partner in crime. It seems March 2017 has taught us that we can be saddened by frustration and a force to reckon with at the same damn time.

It’s difficult to write this blog post because there are countless women worth celebrating. Like Representative Maxine Waters. I could also mention women in history, but this post is about two women whose roles in two popular television series helped them make history. Yes, the two examples come from television series. Sorry not sorry.

First up, Jasika Nicole, a woman who’s gracefulness is effortless and unmatched. She recently became a cast member on season two of “Underground” and left our mouths wide open as she revealed that the “sewing circle” was truly a shotgun totin’ abolitionist group of women willing to take a shot at freeing slaves. Now, Underground fans are probably wondering how I picked Jasika over Amirah Vann, STOP! We know Amirah’s talent is the third coming we’ve been waiting for, but Jasika is teaching us something so hold tight.

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Jasika’s character, Georgia, has suffered loss and is dedicated not only to the cause but the women she fights beside. !!!!SPOILER!!!! She stands beside Jessica De Gouw’s character, Elizabeth, after her husband Jon is killed, and she becomes consumed by her grief. Jasika’s character teaches viewers how we can bear our suffering together. Need I mention she writes and illustrates her own comics. One of her comic books is called “High Yella Magic.” SHE WINS! Jasika’s promotion to the big screen is well deserved, and her character is right on time as our society attempts to learn how to dwell with one another during turbulent times.

The second Black beauty is none other than Kat Graham. Kat’s presence on The Vampire Diaries as Bonnie Bennett has brought me back for more every season. She uses her family’s legacy as a justice-seeking coven in the series’ make-believe city, “Mystic Falls” as her passion for saving her friends and keeping vampires in check. As a keeper of the supernatural balance, Kat’s character is always sacrificing herself and her personal desires for the greater good of the town. That is until she gets pissed. “Self-sacrificing” behavior is in line with the Black woman’s struggle to claim her space and place in the world and Kat’s character is no exception. Although this show dabbles with the supernatural and the series finale was overall PAINFUL and poorly written, Kat’s final scene made me ball my eyes out. It was the epitome of womanism and Black women’s commitment to survival and defending what we’ve created. Kat Graham slayed this character, and her chemistry throughout the series with Jasmine Guy was heartwarming. If you haven’t witnessed the uprising of the ancestors in the finale read this description and watch Bonnie’s final scene.

Both Jasika Nicole and Kat Graham have won a place in my heart for their incredible talent and portrayal of these two phenomenal Black women. These fictional characters aren’t too far removed from the Black women we call grandmother, mother, sister, and friend. As we celebrate the last day of March, remember the women who have shown you unconditional love and loyalty. Remember our ancestors’ plight to freedom. And know that we must do and be better than we’ve been. For all women here and those we’ve said goodbye to, “we speak your name.”

*featured image was originally published on Tell-Tale TV.
**”Sewing Circle” image was originally published on Bossip.

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