It’s Black History Month...well the end of it. And, with that, time for every publication's annual tradition of finding the only person of color in the room to give a thumbs up, in list form, to a random collection of black faces. Who am I to disrupt this sacred custom? Why should I take the risk of shaking the rock solid foundation in which this country’s principles are built on? I WON’T and this is that list. But I will slightly piggy-back on Kanye's ‘Black Future Month’ sentiments in dedicating this cliché roster to a few of my favorite black creatives presently starring in different genres.
We may have the shortest month of the year but we are making a huge impact. With that being said…I’m rooting for everybody black!
Note: (My white peers did not coerce me into writing this Holy Goof piece in order to save face. I am doing this under my own violation and in the safety of my home. Also..HELP!)
Ah shut up, I know...she’s British. American holiday or not, this superstar is getting props in my ‘Black History Month’ listicle. Michaela’s been around for awhile; starring in Netflix hits like ‘Chewing Gum’ and ‘Black Earth Rising’. But she really hit her stride in 2021 when she became the first Black woman to take home the Emmy award for Outstanding Writing for a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie for her HBO drama, ‘I May Destroy You’, which she wrote, directed and starred in! Oh, and if that wasn’t enough, she released a book last fall - ‘Misfits: A Personal Manifesto.’ So, basically all she has to do is release an album to acquire all of the entertainment Infinity Stones. By the way, catch her in ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’ sometime this year.
Being consistently funny online for a long time eventually pays out! Quinta Brunson is an excellent example of why you should never stop getting your jokes off. ‘The Girl Who’s Never Been on a Nice Date’ worked at BuzzFeed Video, killed on ‘A Black Lady Sketch Show’ and has now become the creator and showrunner of one of the hottest shows on TV - 'Abbott Elementary'.
Abbott is ABC network’s first comedy premiere to quadruple ratings since its original airing! It’s a workplace mockumentary, ala ‘The Office’, centered around teachers in a Philadelphia elementary school. Quinta is doing the Lord’s work for black leads in sitcoms and giving us what we all wanted - Dunder Mifflin with a dash of Lawry's.
It’s always great when Twitter O.G.s make it big. Zack’s Twitter fingers have been active since 2013 when he was 'Bootymath'. In fact he’s got one of the most viral tweets of all time - hehe. Now the comedian has director’s credit for Thundercat’s music video for ‘Dragonball Durag ’and is playing the rapper boyfriend of Quinta Brunson’s character (Janine Teagues) in the aforementioned ABC show ‘Abbott Elementary’. We’ve got a 'Zack of all trades' here, as he also released his first studio album, 'shut the fuck up talking to me', in October. It’s got slaps and quite possibly the greatest album cover of all time (see below).
Demetrius Flenory Jr.
These days when 50 Cent calls, you answer. Lil’ Meech went from an aspiring rapper studying business to playing his father, Big Meech, in the Starz show ‘BMF’ - which is based on his establishment of ‘The Black Mafia Family’, one of the largest drug trafficking and money laundering rings in Michigan history (allegedly lol). 50, who produces the show, had him in acting classes for two years prior to taking on the challenge of portraying the Hip-Hop and street legend. He shines in the role, and BMF is certainly on its way to becoming a hit. As for Lil’ Meech, he’s moving toward stardom. They even gave him a shot at Maddy Perez in Euphoria!
I stumbled into this poet’s work in 2019 while going down a successful Twitter rabbithole. He is the author of memoir, ‘How We Fight for Our Lives’, which won the 2019 Kirkus Prize for Nonfiction and the poetry collection, and ‘Prelude to Bruise’, winner of the 2015 PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award for Poetry. Aside from being one hell of a writer, he’s also an excellent follow on Twitter and absolutely someone to keep an eye on in the future. There’s heat coming in September, folks - ALIVE AT THE END OF THE WORLD.
Yeah, it would be a crime not to add her name to this list. Her star is burning retinas these days, so bright GQ called it Zollywood! In 2021 and continuing into 2022 she’s performing a masterclass of acting cardio. From the surprise drop of Netflix’s ‘Malcolm & Marie’, to voicing Lola Bunny in ‘Space Jam 2’; smoothly transitioning into promoting both 'Dune' (7 minutes well spent) and the massive hit, 'Spiderman: No Way Home', THEN a direct sprint to HBO’s 'Euphoria' Season 2 (which she’ll likely win an Emmy for), hand this woman a damn glass of WATER! It’s not just that Zendaya is doing a lot, she’s doing a lot WELL and that’s certainly a testament to the skills of this once in a generation talent.
So yeah that's it…everybody black! But in this case, six people…six people black! Rooting...through February and beyond.