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How Black Magic Redefined The Golden Globes

January 11, 2017



I've often likened The Golden Globes to a night where Black Magic is invited to come to dinner but not feast.  The day melanin shows up to run the race only to be forfeited by a committee of pallid people its never seen.  It was the white consolation ribbon one got for participating, the pacification for "a job well done" but never a podium for victory.  Efforts acknowledged but given no place to rise and rest for a while, the Golden Globes were my visual of the dismissal of the ever so talented, ever so powerful, ever so colorful underdog: Black Magic.  


Until Sunday night.


Sunday night Black Magic stole the show, opening minds and hearts to the possibility Hollywood (at least for one night) was open to all it encompassed.  For so long Black Magic was something to fear and suppress, but on Sunday night it became a beautiful beam of light with exclusive needs and universal appeal.  It became a cool paradigm shift for unparalleled expression and acceptance.  It became to the world what those of us who live in its beauty everyday already knew.  


It became a winner.     


It's funny how perpetual losses have anchored Black Magic's expectations of defeat.  Before Tracee Ellis Ross gracefully accepted the award for her role in ABC's "Blackish," Black Magic was simply happy she and Issa Rae were nominated.  This plays on the way Black Magic has coveted "the nomination." Over time, "the nomination" has become Black Magic's safe haven, a place where it didn't win, but it didn't lose either.  Its become the warm hug from mom right before she says, "at least you tried and did your best."  


But can you blame Black Magic for its contentment?  


Before Tracee Ellis Ross, fingers infused with melanin hadn't wrapped themselves around a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series (musical or comedy) since Debbie Allen in 1983.   A 34-year drought for Black Magic in any category is a slap in the face, a slap its felt for decades on Grammy and Oscar night to name a few.  But with flushed cheeks numb to blows it's conditioned to take from the mainstream, Black Magic keeps showing up.    


Black Magic showed up to the red carpet Sunday, and kept its game face on while a loose lipped correspondent penned the pilot for the new feature film, "Hidden Fences."  It smiled through clenched teeth as Denzel Washington got ripped off for Best Actor In a Drama; those moments serving as Black Magic's reminder their dinner invite only gave them access to the crumbs left under the table by "the big dogs." 


But it's important to note Black Magic's gains, because their redundant snubs have been the focus far too long.  So here's a "you gotta love that Black Girl Magic" for Viola Davis and Tracee Ellis Ross' moving acceptance speeches.  Here's a "big ups" to Donald Glover for the Migos shout-out.  Here's a resounding "that's what I'm talking about" to the cast and crew of "Moonlight."  


Here's a toast to Black Magic. 


My infatuation with Black Magic is rooted in its sustainability.  I'm impressed with how it while light years old, still forcefully filters through my DNA.  Tethered and tainted throughout history, Black Magic's resilience defines me.  I've not only loved Black Magic, I and others who wear melanin daily, live Black Magic.  That's why Donald Glover, Tracee Ellis Ross, Viola Davis and the cast and crew of "Moonlight" were never our underdog.  It just so happened Sunday night the "powers that be" couldn't contain Black Magic , as its excellence, impact and beauty outweighed their motives to ignore it. 


So, let's raise our glasses one more time for Black Magic. 


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