Amid tokenistic television and a whitewashed Oscar season, Aph Ko’s web series ‘Black Feminist Blogger’ pulls up the curtain and reveals the click-fueled demands of digital media.
While shows like Scandal, Sleepy Hollow, and How to Get Away With Murder are well watched and critically acclaimed, women of color are all too frequently ignored in American visual media. Meanwhile, like cable television (before its colonization), the Internet is currently in a golden age for entertainers who are Black, Female, and underrepresented in mainstream entertainment.
The last year has seen a proliferation of scripted comedies from Amani Starnes’s The United Colors of Amani, Azie Mira Dungey’s Ask a Slave, to Issa Rae’s The Mis-Adventures of an Awkward Black Girl (for which HBO has just ordered a pilot). But it’s not just about racial representation. A huge disconnect between entertainment and its audience is the equally unexplored wealth differential. A significant portion of characters on screens of all sizes are financially comfortable, well paid/respected members of professional classes, who are rarely forced to make choices based on economic necessity.