Are Black People Simply Trending on Television?

Patina Miller talks acting, race and the people of color TV trend

(Image: Facebook)
(Image: Facebook)

Mastering any profession is difficult but becoming an actor in Hollywood seemed almost impossible to some, until now. With shows like Empire, Orange is the New Black, How to get Away With Murder and the female favorite, Scandal, it seems that people of color are finally able to carve out a place in television.

[Related: Career Highlights from African Americans Who Made Time’s 100 Most Influential People]

But, even with prime time spots many question will people of color continue to receive a high level of exposure or are black people just simply trending in the world of television.

“I don’t think it’s a trend at all, me personally,” says Patina Miller, award winning actress, “We just happen to be people of color. I think its all the acting, I think we were the right people for the roles”.

The argument that black people are the “right ones for the roles”, seems to be a large part of the controversy. Rebuttals from online communities lace the internet claiming, that many roles currently being played by people of color, especially women of color are hyper-sexualized, unrealistic and stereotypical, but despite the differences of opinions Miller makes a solid point.

“Not just one type of person watches TV, it has to be diverse. I think TV is finally representing what our world is and what our society is and thats great.”, said Miller, “It sucks because no one would ever say (It’s a trend) about all the men that are on television, (or) all the white people that are in television because we are making more of our presence known in the industry, It’s become a big thing, and listen, I’m ok with that.
So, rather you’re interested in being the next scandalous problem solver, Olivia Pope, played by Kerri Washington on ABC’s Scandal, or the funny anesthesiologist, Rainbow Johnson, played by Tracee Ellis Ross on Blackish, or a character that you haven’t yet created, keep in mind that no, one kind of person, watches television and rather trending or not, more people of color are breaking through on prime time.

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