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Does BET get a fair shake nowadays?

  • Written by Panama Jackson

A few weeks ago, I got into an argument with a friend of mine who happens to work for what I once dubbed "The Evil Empire." That company is BET. The argument was about the fact that I seemed to lack any sort of positive vibes towards BET. Basically upon mention of those three letters in order (came) an impressive array of profanities....

And I cuss real good.

Her point was that I was so prepared to dislike anything associated with BET that I wouldn't even give the lineup of shows they had a chance. Perhaps – the plea went – if I were to give love a chance, I'd find that the programming was worth my time.

Also, given how much I tend to...moan about black programming, it's possible I was doing a bigger disservice to the community by not only not supporting, but actively UNsupporting....

While I could easily shoot down her latter argument using two words – Tyler Perry – I realized that I wasn't even sure why I hated BET so much...anymore (the former arguments were very strong).

Hell, I watch "The Game" even though I think the show has totally devolved into dramatic (expletive). I attempted to watch "Let's Stay Together" and "Reed Between The Lines." I actually didn't mind "Let's Stay Together" that much, though now that I think about it, I can't actually remember who was in it or what the show as about.

"Reed Between The Lines" attempted to be a modern day Cosby Show, except with a blended family, etc. That show did little more than make me go back and realize how much edge "The Cosby Show" actually had....

Well, BET has decided to trot out two new shoes: "Real Househusbands of Hollywood" and "Second Generation Wayans." So I figure, what the...I'll give them a shot....

I've watched the trailers for "RHOH" numerous times and you know what, them (.....) were hilarious. You've got Kevin Hart in his prime and a slew of random arse, has-been actors on a fake reality show, which to me means script. Yeah, there ain't one on this show obviously. And this first episode left something to be desired. One thing I realized while watching this show was this: comedians need a script. Very few are just funny off the cuff for long periods of time unless they get on a roll....

"Second Generation Wayans" managed to be funnier than "RHOH," which...surprised me. That didn't make sense except...it had a script. I'll tune in.

This was a long... way of wondering two things: 1) are we giving BET a fair enough shake anymore?.... 2) Is BET doing a better job of bringing the type of programming we claim we want than we give it credit for?

I'm as guilty of making BET the culprit for all that's wrong with Black America. But here's something to think about. Melissa Harris-Perry's show on MSNBC comes on every Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to noon. I love it. Actually, I just think I love her, but whatever, I'm tuning in....

As Twitter is the best way to see what's happening in Black America, it seems that many of the Ninjerati do indeed tune into her show on Saturday or Sunday mornings. On purpose. Which means we gave it a chance and I'm curious why b/c until her show aired, I'd never heard of her.

Would we have tuned in at all if it was on BET? Hell, would we tune in NOW if it was on BET? I wonder. Actually, I don't. The answer is no.

So again, I ask, does the perception of BET completely cloud our ability to even notice if BET is giving Black America some of what we have been clamoring for?....

For the record, I do feel like we can get almost all of what we're looking for on other stations nowadays. But that does beg the age-old question, what exactly are we looking for? Do we even know?

Mmm mmm mmm mmm.

Source: Very Smart Brothas;

Read the full column at http://verysmartbrothas.com/

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