The Verdict on BET’s Being Mary Jane…


I watched Being Mary Jane  on my DVR with my sister-in-law  (a.k.a. sissy). It was ridiculously real and hauntingly familiar. From the creator of Moesha, Girlfriends and The Game, we get Mary Jane Paul, a woman who has the career, the home and the car but aches for something more consistent and stable in her love life.

The 1 hour & 30 minute pilot explored so many topics: black sexuality, racism in the workplace, unemployment, teen pregnancy, monogamy, and the list goes on and on. There were at least three moments in the show where I was literally shocked. Shocked because here were some fictional characters with imaginary lives tackling some very real issues. In the era of TV Talent Shows and Scripted Reality TV Shows, it is refreshing to see a hard-core drama, not a situational comedy and not a documentary on television but a roller coaster ride, talk back to the TV, pause it and call your girl to discuss kind of drama. I am even more impressed and dare I say proud that Being Mary Jane was brought to us by BET, because after all, it is a platform that should be telling our stories…

So thank you Mara Brock Akil & Salim Akil of Akil Productions for creating a black woman who is strong, independent and fierce, while also being vulnerable, naive and impulsive. I can’t even get into how dynamic and developed Mary Jane is and how invested I am in her story. Thank you Debra Lee for providing a platform for this story and for moving black women beyond video vixens and veejays. Thank you Gabrielle Union for being an amazing actress and for bringing this character to light. On this July 4th as I watch the fireworks explode in the sky, I am hoping for nothing but success for this project, its creators and the network.


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