Things became heated during the Black-ish TCA panel this afternoon, when a reporter noted the ABC show has gotten past the “how will it be received” in the country stage, past the Donald Trump tweeting “How is ABC Television allowed to have a show entitled Blackish?… Racism at highest level?” stage and has “settled in as a success (success that includes three Emmy noms last month for best comedy actress, actor, and series).
The reporter asked series creator/executive producer Kenya Barris if he could share data on how much of the series’ audience is black, and how that information shapes what the producers write for the show.
“I have the best job in the world and I’m constantly having to talk about diversity,” an exasperated Barris shot back. “I have the best actors. This is ridiculous. We’re at a time when everything is about black and white.”
It doesn’t matter who is watching the show, he insisted. “I’m so tired of talking about diversity,” he said, complaining. “It’s clouding the conversation.”
“I look around at this political race. It isn’t even about political parties. We’re so divided as a community,” Barris continued.
Saying is is proud of this family show, Barris noted that it is about a black family, and asked the white reporter who’d asked the question, “Don’t you see your family reflected in it?”
“Why is that important who watches the show? Why does it matter. Why do we keep having this conversation?” Barris said. “Why can’t we see the show for what it is?”
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