Interracial Couples In Media
Let me start by saying I have no issue with Interracial couples. Any love that is mutual, consensual and all of that is okay in my book.
Now that that is out the way, why is no one discussing the omission of Black love in and through mainstream media? One click through Romantic Comedy Category on Netflix and there is an unlimited collection of White love stories , Interracial couples are runner-up typically configured of Black Men paired with White or Ambiguous looking women. Black love stories are lightly peppered in and are often curated from other countries.
Bridegerton for awhile was a Netflix’s hit, and lived in the top 10 for weeks. While the cast is diverse and the love story is beautiful., these stories read as half ass attempts at representation. When I look around at friends and family, I see Black love. It surrounds me. Happy married couples, healthy family units. Mainstream media does not depict these stories. As a Millinieal I am no stranger to growing up on white love stories such as The Titanic, The Notebook, Pretty Woman, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, How Harry Met Sally, etc. etc.
We’ve been trained to accept these images and while we are proud of our Black Classic love romances, Love Jones. Love and Basketball are new found classic Queen and Slim, the deliberate omission of two Black adults kissing one another, hugging, holding hands, making love, having their hearts broken, etc. in mainstream media perpetuates the ideologies that Black people cannot hurt and do not love in the same way as our White counterparts.
Instead the choice to cast couples that dilute those images, is the effort to make Black romance in some way more palpable for White audiences. Interracial couples have also taken on a sort of classist connotation. We’ve seen it in Hip Hop and sports, Black men marrying White or ambiguous women. The message is , as my life upgrades, so does my woman. So while Interracial couples are not inherently bad, it’s the consistent omission and dominance in our media that sends narratives, that Black love is not worthy.
While I am more of an advocate of building our own table versus asking for a seat at “the table” I do understand the perilous affects of representation. The narratives we are infiltrated through media do have an impact on this generation and generations to come.
Photo by JD Mason