Robin Thede’s dream was to be on Saturday Night Live and play amazing characters. But when she had the opportunity to create her own sketch show, Thede jumped and A Black Lady Sketch Show on HBO was born. The series speaks to her own experiences, which she combines with comedy.
“It’s a crazy show because we took all these black women, put them in this world where anything magical can happen,” Thede said during HBO’s portion of Deadline’s Contenders Television virtual event. “We get to play hundreds of amazing characters that you have never seen on any sketch ever before. We get to play with the boundaries of what black women could do with comedy.”
Created, written by and starring Thede, A Black Lady Sketch Show is executive produced by Insecure‘s Issa Rae and features Ashley Nicole Black, Gabrielle Dennis and Quinta Brunson. The show, which has been renewed for a second season, is written and performed by a cast of black women touching on such themes as social norms, anxiety, religion, sex, dating and relationships.
As Thede points out, she doesn’t necessarily want to be political with the show, but being a black woman is political in so many ways by just existing.
“When I was making the show, my inherently political statement was just to have four black women in the cast of the sketch show and present it to the world in that way,” said Thede. “I don’t think we wanted to go overly political or controversial, but in talking about things we go through I think we hit those hot-button topics.”
Check out the panel video above.
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.