‘Mixed-ish’ Cast Reacts to ABC Cancellation After Two Seasons: “Onward And Upward”

Posted in Articles, Arts, Media Archive, United States on 2021-06-05 02:49Z by Steven

‘Mixed-ish’ Cast Reacts to ABC Cancellation After Two Seasons: “Onward And Upward”

Deadline
2021-05-14

Alexandra Del Rosario, TV Reporter


Kelsey McNeal/ABC

The actresses behind Mixed-ish‘s Johnson family broke their silence on social media after ABC announced that it will not renew the comedy for a third season.

Arica Himmel, who stars as the younger version of Tracee Ellis Ross’ Rainbow “Bow” Johnson, first posted her reaction to the news on Instagram. She reminisced on her time on the series, following in Ross’ steps and more.

“TI want to thank our many loyal fans who joined us each week for the last two years on our journey from the commune to the ‘burbs — it has been an amazing experience and I will miss my TV family more than you can imagine,” she said…

Read the entire article here.

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How ‘mixed-ish’ Failed To Tackle Biracial Identity and Chose To Rely On Tropes

Posted in Articles, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2019-10-27 00:54Z by Steven

How ‘mixed-ish’ Failed To Tackle Biracial Identity and Chose To Rely On Tropes

Wear Your Voice
2019-10-02

Nylah Burton

How 'mixed-ish' Failed To Tackle Biracial Identity and Chose To Rely On Tropes

Set in the 1980s, ABC’s mixed-ish, the newest black-ish spin-off, tells the story of Dr. Rainbow “Bow” Johnson’s (Arica Himmel) experience growing up biracial. The Johnson family — white father Paul (Mark-Paul Gosselaar), Black mother Alicia (Tika Sumpter), Bow and her siblings Johan (Ethan William Childress) and Santamonica (Mykal-Michelle Harris) — are also former members of a “hippy” commune, where presumably, neither race nor racism existed.

The show’s premise is that being forced into the “real world,” where race and racism do exist, is a major source of culture shock that the entire family must now navigate.

As a Black multiracial woman who doesn’t have a white parent, I’m tired of portrayals of mixedness that mock Blackness, portray multiraciality and interracial marriages as the more “righteous” path, and ignore experiences that don’t fit into POC/white binaries.

Unfortunately, mixed-ish embodies all this and more…

Read the entire article here.

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A Simplistic View of a Mixed-ish America

Posted in Articles, Book/Video Reviews, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2019-10-26 18:34Z by Steven

A Simplistic View of a Mixed-ish America

The Atlantic
2019-10-26

Hannah Giorgis


ABC / Byron Cohen

ABC’s Black-ish spinoff joins a new memoir by Thomas Chatterton Williams in presenting a seemingly enlightened but ahistorical view of race.

Mixed-ish, the prequel of the Tracee Ellis Ross–fronted sitcom Black-ish, begins with a rupture. At the tender age of 12, Rainbow “Bow” Johnson (played by Arica Himmel) is ejected from the hippie commune where she and her family live. As the adult Bow, Ross narrates the predicament that follows the government raid of the utopian community: Bow’s black mother and white father must now raise their three biracial children in the harsh world of mid-1980s suburban America. Though it’s set during the broader tumult of the Reagan era, Mixed-ish is driven by the identity crisis that Rainbow and her siblings, Johan and Santamonica, face. On their first day at their new school, the trio are stopped by a pair of dark-skinned students who ask them, “What are you weirdos mixed with?” When the fairer-skinned Johnson kids naively respond, “What’s ‘mixed’?” their classmates laugh.

Ross, who also serves as a series writer and executive producer, talks viewers through this confrontation in a didactic voiceover. “I know the idea of not understanding what it means to be mixed sounds crazy, but you have to understand—growing up on the commune, race wasn’t a thing,” she says. “Do you have any idea how many more mixed babies there are today? Probably because interracial marriage was illegal until the Loving Act of 1967,” she explains, adding that she and her siblings were “were basically the beta testers for biraciality.” In this scene and in later episodes, Mixed-ish falls into the trap of framing its protagonists as pioneers of mixed-race consciousness, rather than inheritors of a long and complex history…

…In addition to Mixed-ish, Loving and the mythos surrounding it has provided fodder for another recent work about biraciality. In his new book, Self-Portrait in Black and White: Unlearning Race, the author Thomas Chatterton Williams notes that his “black” father and “white” mother met the year after the Loving decision. (In an author’s note, Williams explains that he sought “to cast doubt on and reject terms … such as ‘white,’ ‘black,’ ‘mixed,’ ‘biracial,’ ‘Asian,’ ‘Latino,’ ‘monoracial,’ etc.” by placing them in quotation marks.) The author’s second memoir, Self-Portrait was inspired by a moment of shock. When Williams’s white French wife gave birth to their daughter, he was stunned to see that the child had blond hair. The baby’s appearance upended Williams’s self-conception: How could he, a biracial man who’d identified as black and written Obama-era columns about his future children being undeniably black, produce a child who looked, well, white?…

Read the entire article here.

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ABC Orders ‘Black-Ish’ Prequel ‘Mixed-Ish’ Starring Tika Sumpter, Renews Parent Series For Season 6

Posted in Articles, Arts, Media Archive, United States on 2019-05-03 13:11Z by Steven

ABC Orders ‘Black-Ish’ Prequel ‘Mixed-Ish’ Starring Tika Sumpter, Renews Parent Series For Season 6

Shadow And Act
2019-05-02

black-ish has been renewed for Season 6 and ABC has also officially ordered a prequel series, mixed-ish.

The fact that mixed-ish has received an early series order ahead of upfronts shows the network’s heavy confidence in the second black-ish series following Freeform’s grown-ish. Initially set to air this season, the mixed-ish backdoor pilot will air as an episode of black-ish next season.

The official description for mixed-ish: Rainbow Johnson recounts her experience growing up in a mixed-race family in the ’80s and the constant dilemmas they had to face over whether to assimilate or stay true to themselves. Bow’s parents Paul and Alicia decide to move from a hippie commune to the suburbs to better provide for their family. As her parents struggle with the challenges of their new life, Bow and her siblings navigate a mainstream school in which they’re perceived as neither black nor white. This family’s experiences illuminate the challenges of finding one’s own identity when the rest of the world can’t decide where you belong…

Read the entire article here.

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Hawaiian Family Drama From Viola Davis, Lisa Takeuchi Cullen Set at ABC (Exclusive)

Posted in Articles, Arts, Asian Diaspora, Media Archive, Oceania, United States, Women on 2018-08-28 02:00Z by Steven

Hawaiian Family Drama From Viola Davis, Lisa Takeuchi Cullen Set at ABC (Exclusive)

The Hollywood Reporter
2018-08-22

Rebecca Sun

Former Time journalist Lisa Takeuchi Cullen will write ''Ohana,' based on Kiana Davenport's 1994 novel 'Shark Dialogues.'
Lisa Takeuchi Cullen (Matt Dine; Courtesy of Plume)

ABC is headed back to Hawaii.

The network is teaming with Viola Davis and Julius Tennon’s JuVee Productions to develop the hourlong drama ‘Ohana. The potential series is based on Kiana Davenport’s 1994 novel Shark Dialogues and follows four hapa women who reunite when their grandmother, a mystic known as a kahuna, dies mysteriously and leaves them the family plantation.

Former Time staff writer and foreign correspondent Lisa Takeuchi Cullen will pen the adaptation.

“So many Hawaii-set stories have been told from the white point of view,” Cullen tells The Hollywood Reporter. “This is a story we’re passionate about telling from the point of view of native Hawaiians — Pacific Islanders, people of Asian descent and people of hapa heritage.”

Each of the four protagonists is of a different mixed ethnicity — half-white, half-Japanese, half-Filipino and half-black — and their unexpected shared inheritance will force them to overcome years of jealousies, misunderstandings, resentments and secrets…

Read the entire article here.

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‘I’m not half of anything’

Posted in Audio, Autobiography, Interviews, Media Archive, Oceania on 2017-07-05 18:28Z by Steven

‘I’m not half of anything’

It’s Not A Race
Radio National
Australian Broadcasting Corporation
2017-06-29

Beverley Wang, Presenter


So how about this idea that biracial and multiracial children are the key to a post-racial future utopia?

And how does it measure up to the lived experience of biracial Australians?

It’s Not A Race explores what it’s really like to grow up as a biracial Australian with Faustina Agolley, Lucie Cutting, Nkechi Anele, and the Hameed sisters, Leona and Monique.

Listen to the podcast (00:24:57) here.

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What Would It Mean To Have A ‘Hapa’ Bachelorette?

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2016-03-14 19:59Z by Steven

What Would It Mean To Have A ‘Hapa’ Bachelorette?

Code Switch: Frontiers of Race, Culture and Ethnicity
National Public Radio
2016-03-13

Akemi Johnson

On a recent episode of The Bachelor, the ABC dating reality show that ends its 20th season Monday night, contestant Caila Quinn brings Ben Higgins home to meet her interracial family.

“Have you ever met Filipinos before?” Quinn’s mother asks, leading Higgins into a dining room where the table is filled with traditional Filipino food.

“I don’t know,” he replies. “No. I don’t think so.”

As they sit around the adobo and pancit, Quinn’s father talks to Higgins, white man to white man. What comes with dating Quinn, the father says, “is a very special Philippine community.” Quinn grimaces.

“I had no idea what I was getting into when I married Caila’s mother,” the father says. But being married to a Filipina, he assures Higgins, has been “the most fun” and “magical.”

This scene can be read as an attempt by The Bachelor franchise to dispel criticisms (and the memory of a 2012 lawsuit) concerning its whitewashed casts. It shows how these attempts can be clunky at best, offensive and creepy at worst.

Quinn’s run also demonstrates how, as this rose-strewn, fantasy-fueled romance machine tries to include more people of color, diversification looks like biracial Asian-American — often known as “hapa” — women…

…Mixed-race Asian-white women become the perfect vehicles for diversity on this show because they are “white enough to present to the family,” as Morning said, while still being exotic enough to fill a quota. Morning suggested they also get a boost from the model minority myth and the recent idea that being multiracial is “cool.”…

Myra Washington, assistant professor of communication at the University of New Mexico, predicted an increase in black contestants if Quinn becomes the bachelorette. “Not Wesley Snipes black, because this is still TV,” she said. She guessed there would be more mixed-race African-Americans, brown-skinned men, Latinos. But colonial legacies and systems of power die hard. “I think she’ll ultimately end up with a white dude,” she said.

Read the entire article here.

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A Family Rooted in Two Realms

Posted in Articles, Book/Video Reviews, Media Archive, United States on 2014-09-24 20:45Z by Steven

A Family Rooted in Two Realms

The New York Times
2014-09-23

Neil Genzlinger, Television Critic


In “black-ish,” Anthony Anderson and Tracee Ellis Ross lead a family wrestling with racial issues. From left, Marsai Martin, Marcus Scribner, Yara Shahidi and Miles Brown as their children.
ADAM TAYLOR / ABC

‘black-ish,’ a New ABC Comedy, Taps Racial Issues

A lot of people in the television business are said to be curious to see how “black-ish,” ABC’s new comedy, is received when it has its premiere on Wednesday night. What they should really be curious about, though, is where the series goes after its funny but talking-point-heavy first episode.

The sitcom centers on a black family in Los Angeles, the Johnsons, struggling with prosperity. Andre (Anthony Anderson) works at an advertising agency; in the premiere, he’s on the verge of a major promotion. Rainbow (Tracee Ellis Ross) is an anesthesiologist. Their four children are smart and adorable.

If this puts you in mind of the Huxtables of “The Cosby Show,” that’s no accident. But more than the Huxtables ever were, the Johnsons are wrestling with whether their comfortable lives are causing them to forget that they’re black…

…At home, he tells his lighter-skinned wife — a “pigment-challenged mixed-race woman,” he calls her — that she’s not black enough. He is dismayed that his older son is trying out for field hockey instead of basketball. The dinner table discussion (yes, we’ve found the last family in America that still eats together around a dinner table) focuses on whether the children know that Barack Obama is the first black president. Even fried chicken comes in for scrutiny, although not from Andre, but from his father, winningly played by Laurence Fishburne.

It’s all gentle as can be. “Black-ish” may be full of racial themes, but it’s working a gimmick that transcends race: Dad as buffoon…

Read the entire review here.

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Color Lines Are Blurred in ABC Comedy ‘Black-Ish’

Posted in Articles, Book/Video Reviews, Media Archive, United States on 2014-09-19 18:29Z by Steven

Color Lines Are Blurred in ABC Comedy ‘Black-Ish’

The Associated Press
2014-09-19

Frazier Moore, Television Writer

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — Tracee Ellis Ross delivers perhaps the funniest line you’ll hear on a sitcom this fall.

The character she plays on ABC’s comedy “black-ish” is, like Ross, an appealing mix of beauty, smarts and zaniness. She is totally plausible as a savvy mother of four and the loving wife of an up-and-coming ad exec (co-star Anthony Anderson), not to mention a busy anesthesiologist.

In this upscale African-American family, Dr. Rainbow Johnson also happens to be biracial. This occasionally spurs Andre, her hubby, who’s forever fretting about the family’s black cred, to question whether she is certifiably “black.”

He does this in the series’ premiere, to which, unfazed, Rainbow fires back, “If I’m not really black, then could someone please tell my hair and my ass!”

Reminded of that line during a recent interview, Ross cracks up.

“That’s what I love about our show,” she says. “With that line, my character sums it all up: ‘Are you STILL coming from the world that believes all black people are the same and all black people should think the same? C’mon, Dre!'”

With remarkable humor and finesse, “black-ish” (which debuts Sept. 24 at 9:30 p.m. EDT) addresses race, culture, socio-economics and other weighty matters…

Read the entire article here.

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