On this episode of the 2BG podcast, we return from our brief hiatus to catch up on some of the pop culture things we’ve missed, including Kanye on Kimmel, the melodrama of Scandal, and Miley (WHO WE WILL NEVER TALK ABOUT AGAIN).
We’re also joined by blogger/artist/curator/youtuber/poet/African conservationist and all around Renaissance woman Yagazie Emezi for a frank conversation on identity and body issues amongst WOC (trigger warning for discussion on ED starting around 35). As always send us a tweet or a message with your comments and questions!
A mere thirty-seconds into last week’s premiere episode of ‘American Horror Story: Coven’, I found myself rushing to my Twitter account to announce that I was already in love. Now, two weeks into the show, I’m wondering if I might have spoke too soon. Currently in its third season, the FX anthology series has been both reviled and revered for its distinct mix of horror and high camp since debuting in 2011. It’s definitely an acquired taste, with latex-wearing ghosts, alien babies, mad Nazi doctors, and demon-possessed nuns.
But the charm of ‘American Horror Story’, at least for me, is all that craziness coupled with what on the surface comes off as a sense of self-awareness, of melodrama, what with its references to the B-horror movies of yesteryear, and an acute tendency to go over over-the-top whilst never taking itself all the way seriously. And that’s the spiel many fans of the show tell themselves and others whenever the narrative gets decidedly ridiculous or messed up. Of course, the danger in that reading is in giving the series (and by extension showrunner Ryan Murphy) more credit than it deserves.
This is a show that is often as problematic as it is delightfully bizarre, and navigating the thin line between being critical of its faults and being entertained by its eccentricities is perhaps the most difficult part about being a fan. Despite its pride in producing complex female characters, the series has the simultaneous tendency to perpetuate harmful stereotypes about women (especially those who own their sexuality) and to punish women (all three seasons have used rape as a plot point). Obviously there’s also the casual racism, ableism, and homophobia that’s become a staple in all Ryan Murphy shows - used as a device to develop or at the very least place emphasis on the quirky, outrageous, sometimes vile characters that make up the series multiverse.
On the first episode of ‘American Horror Story: Coven’, we got our first taste of this sort of vile character (or caricature) when we met Kathy Bates as historical figure Delphine LaLaurie, a New Orleans socialite who in the 1830s was revealed to be socialite by day, sadistic serial torturer and killer of slaves by night. We’re taken to her underground lair, where her slaves are caged and beaten, some literally covered in blood, with one particularly gory shot showing a person with all the skin on their face peeled off.
The crowning moment, as it were, is when she strings a young black man up for apparently making love to her daughter, suffocating him by covering his face with a bull’s head in an attempt to, bizarrely, create her very own minotaur. Later, we see another slave’s pancreas removed from his abdomen with a hook. Gore is nothing new on this show, which often pays homage to the slasher films of the mid-70s and 80s. But in this case, it isn’t the images themselves that are disturbing. It’s the context in which they’re being presented…
On this episode of 2BG, we gush over Solange’s amazing ‘Lovers in the Parking Lot’ video and just her general aura, discuss the racist reactions to the Miss America crowning of Nina Davuluri (starts at 10:00), embark on another tangent revolving around the n-word and whether or not it’s people of color’s job to “educate” white people (25:00), and finally FANGIRL THE FUCK OUT over the new Fox series Sleepy Hollow, as well as discuss issues of racism in the ‘sleepy head’ fandom and fandom in general(35:00 - and spoilers abound for episode 1). If we do say so ourselves this is probs the best episode of Two Brown Girls yet.
P.S- Zeba will be live-tweeting tonight’s Emmy Awards here on the blog and on her personal twitter and the 2BG twitter!
We’re baaaaaaaaaaack! On this week’s episode of 25G what started out as a Toronto International Film Festival recap turned into a heated debate about Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave - there are some spoilers in the discussion but nothing that will majorly ruin the film for those who haven’t seen it (a specific timestamp who those who want to avoid any spoilers whatsoever will be up soon). We’ll also talk Spike Jonze’s Her and our distaste for ScarJo, as well as ditch on some celebrity sightings during the fest.
On this week’s episode of 25G we discuss the fuckery that is “Harriet Tubman Sex Tape”, the #SolidarityIsForWhiteWomen tag, Oprah and respectability politics, Kal Penn’s disappointing defense of Stop and Frisk, and Lena Waithe’s new project ‘Twenties’.
On this week’s episode of 25G we discuss Fariha’s recent run-in with a white male who believes class struggle is more important/damaging than racism and sexism, and answer your questions! We give our takes on POC culturally appropriating other POC, Chris Brown’s treatment as opposed to other known (white) celebrity abusers, Beyonce lightening her skin, and our favorite books. Zeba also makes a phrophetic comment about the new Doctor, hence our Podcast image this week (we also figure that more people will listen if they see Peter Capaldi’s face???)
Del Toro has been asked many things about a sequel and he decided to spill some beans. He confirmed that Warner Bros has allowed he and his team to start writing a sequel, which is currently being worked on.
On this week’s episode of 25G, Zeba is joined by special guest-host Ashley Reese of Gurl.com! We address some of the anonymous hate that 2BG has been getting since our post about Trayvon, discuss Rae Dawn Chong referring to Oprah as a “field nigger”, gush over Orange is the New Black’s phenomenal Laverne Cox, and bitch about the recent Emmy nominations (except of course for Kerry Washington’s historic nom!). Fariha will be back next week, and please keep an eye out for our video TV and movie recaps coming soon.
Ryan Coogler’s “Fruitvale Station” had a huge first weekend of limited release, taking in $377,285 from just 7 theaters for a $53,898 per-theater-average. The winner of both the Grand Jury Prize and the audience award at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, the film is based on the true story of a young black man (played by Michael B. Jordan) who was wrongfully killed by a police officer at a transit station in Oakland, California (it in many ways mirrors the case of Trayvon Martin, whose killer was controversially acquitted this weekend).
On this week’s episode of 25G, we decided to record a few of our thoughts on the Trayvon Martin case in addition to the full show, which was recorded two days before the verdict was announced. We’ll obviously have a more in depth conversation about our reactions, but in the meantime it didn’t feel right posting up a podcast today without at least acknowledging the injustice that has been done.
After that, you’ll hear our discussions about Jay Z and Marina, Andrew Garfield and Michael B Jordan, Mos Def’s video on Guantanamo Bay, and a pretty long, heated, (and heavily edited due to length) discussion about the new Oldboy trailer and whether it should have been made at all.
We hope our conversation puts a smile on your face during this pretty shitty weekend. We encourage you guys to send us your thoughts and feelings and most of all ideas on how to effect change.
This is heartbreaking. Early tracking suggests that Guillermo del Toro’s long-awaited “robots vs. monsters” movie Pacific Rim is gaining less audience interest than Grown-Ups 2, which opens the same weekend. Legendary Pictures “risks losing a lot of money” on Pacific Rim, Variety warns.
I don’t have many followers, I know this. But tumblr is more than than the followers you have, the ears that first hear your voice when you shout, when you cry.
Get the word out.
If giant robots fighting giant monsters flops on our watch, on this generation’s turn at bearing the torch of nerdom, we shall forever be remembered as the generation that lost it all.
I say, no. Not this time. Not this movie. We will not fail our genre and the geeks that came before us- dreaming of this day- nor those destined to follow us.
On this week’s episode of 2BG we discuss more music, answering a listener question about whether the music world has better representation than film and TV. We also talk more Yeezus (misogyny, racism, and contradictions in Kanye’s music), Paula Deen showing her ass, celebrity baby names, Fariha’s love life, and whether or not Zeba should be classified as a “hipster.”
On this week’s episode of 2BG we’ve devoted the main part of our discussion to your questions. We discuss being the “token” person of color in the group of white friends, why Fariha hates Natalie Portman, how our Ghanaian and Bengali mothers feel about what we do for a living, Tyler the Creator’s misogynistic bullshit, and finally we delve into a discussion about the New York Times interview with Kanye West (just so you know this was recorded pre-Yeezus leak and pre-Kimye baby!)
p.s. - If you’re like Zeba and you begrudgingly watch the often problematic hot mess that is True Blood, follow us on Twitter for our live-blogging at 9pm EST!