Traditionally snubbed by the mainstream media, the world of hip hop is now the Hot thing for TV Hollywood writers. After the resounding success of “Empire” (which became the most watched series in the United States for ten years) three new series of the same kind will also make their appearance on our screens.
Empire is one of the most popular series of the moment in the US, with about 12 million viewers on average per week for its second season, broadcasted late 2015 on FOX.
This opera 3.0 narrates the stories of a hip-hop mogul Lucious Lyon family who must choose between his three son to succeed him at the head of his empire. Praised by critics and the public, the show includes both a showbiz appearance and a political aspect. This is one of the biggest surprises in the history of American television.
Joe Earley, one of the clutches of Fox, the channel broadcasting empire, told The Hollywood Reporter the plan behind the launch of such a series:
Our goal was to do a show that is an event for a certain population (African American) and at the same time very attractive for a majority of the population. Empire is both mainstream and a previously untouched niche.
Not insignificantly which probably prompted the channel to produce a fiction “targeting” the African American population which watches on average 42% more TV than his American counterparts from the work conducted by Nielsen, the specialist studies of audiences.
This phenomenal success originally intended for black audiences has naturally given ideas to many channels and producers.
After a pilot successfully launched at the beginning of the year, VH1, the little sister of the legendary MTV channel heads to turn in the crossbred fictional hip hop.
The series titled The Breaks is inspired by the bestseller The Big Payback: The History of the Business of Hip-Hop by Dan Charnas, former producer and The Source of journalist. His book looks back on many years of hip hop culture and collects the testimonies of key players like: businessmen, producers, record labels and not to mention mobsters.
Read also: Gay Marriage: Slovenia said No
The series will follow the peregrinations of Nikki, David and DeeVee three friends united by their love of hip hop and their desire to break into the music industry where rap passion mingle with the drug deals and murders.
At the helm of this series, which has bet all the way to the nostalgia of the 80s and 90s, a time when New York was still plagued by crime, we find Seith Mann, author, producer and director of The Wire, which suggests the best.
The Breaks best represents the VH1 culture nostalgia of the 90s combined with hip hop to the masses. We are glad to tell a story that will speak to millions of pop culture fans, “already congratulated the boss Chris McCarthy.
Netflix also takes the bandwagon with a series created by Baz Lurhmann called The Get Down. This will look at the origins of hip hop in New York of the 70’s.
The first images have the merit to arouse curiosity, raising hopes that this new foray into the world of music by the Australian director will be better than Moulin Rouge!
The giant Apple has meanwhile made an announcement to say the least “revolutionary” in mid-February, the Cupertino company is embarking on the production of a television series, entitled Vital Signs and based in part on the life of the legend rap Dr. Dre. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Apple does not wish to sweeten subversive adventures of rap mogul as violence and sex scenes are clearly on the program. Robert Munic, co-executive producer and writer of Empire was enlisted to revitalize smoky memories of the boss of Compton.
Place of blacks in the film industry.
The growing number of series starring black actors – note that hip hop was born in the African-American community and that’s a good news and trend as they feel increasingly frustrated by the lack of professional opportunities available to them in this industry.
This problem of lack of diversity on the screen has also been highlighted around the last Oscar ceremony. No color folks have been nominated actor, prompting director Spike Lee to boycott this great mass of Hollywood. At the same time appeared the #OscarsSoWhite hashtag on Twitter in protest.
But if black actors and actresses will be more on the screen, thanks to the emergence of these series around hip hop, the problem just moved and calls on the carpet the one of representation, which had already been discussed with the appearance of the TV series Empire.
Some voices in the African-American community were indeed high to denounce violent and negative representation of the black community through the series (Lucious Lyon and some of his friends were indeed very dirty hands).
A series that only “perpetuate stereotypes”.
In an article on the site of NPR, the US public radio, one particular learns that Boyce Watkins, an economist, political journalist and activist of the African-American cause in the United States, found that the series about “drama of the ghetto only perpetuates the stereotypes about black people.”
Read also: Why men do not flirt anymore?
For Darnell Hunt, from the university of UCLA, specializing in racial representation in the media, the series is rather evidence of a greater intelligence in making his human characters made of qualities and flaws. Cookie’s character is vulgar and sulfur (she has 17 years of jail for drug trafficking) but it is touching when she defends her gay son from homophobic attacks of her ex-husband.
Eric Deggans, journalist at NPR, these criticisms are nothing new: when the series The Sopranos was at the top she, too was criticized by some voices from the Italian-American community. But in his humanity Tony Soprano and his family helped the series to go beyond stereotypes and to tell a story that can speak to everybody.
We simply wish to all these new series the same posterity. Netnewstimes.com