Tag Archives: Selena Roberts

She’s Gotta Have It generates success with viewers

Selena Roberts | Staff Writer

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Courtesy of Ayanna Maxwell

Netflix has does it again.

The streaming service has released several shows that are centered around an African-American cast, including Dear White People, Chewing Gum and now She’s Gotta Have It.

She’s Gotta Have It is a reboot of Spike Lee’s 1986 film.

Spike Lee is responsible for several hit films, including Do The Right Thing, Malcolm X, Crooklyn and School Daze.

The new show has already generated some controversy, but it has also attracted new fans.

Although the show is based on the movie, the new series provides a refreshing look at how females define themselves in relationships in 2017.

The show is set in New York and centers on an artist named Nola Darling.

Nola is an independent spirit who does not let anyone put a label on her when it comes to her sexuality or her relationships.

The audience can see the firsthand experiences of her struggles in dealing with her identity as an African-American woman.

Throughout the series, Nola struggles with choosing what type of person she wants to be with, so she ultimately dates more than one man.

She has three love interests throughout the 10 episodes, and they all have completely different personalities: the goofy yet lovable Mars Blackmon, the well-established investor yet still married Jamie Overstreet and the handsome yet self-absorbed model Greer Childs.

At some point in time, each man wants to establish an official relationship with Nola.

However, Nola will not allow anything to further develop in her love life unless it is on her terms.

In one episode, Nola says, “If they want to deal with me, it has to be on my terms, or it ain’t gonna happen.”

Although some critics have stated that Nola’s character is promiscuous and immature, she is anything but that.

She is firm in her beliefs and will not let any man change her values. Everyone is different, so she does not represent every female, but she does provide a different take on the dating experience for women that viewers do not usually see.

Besides the intriguing storyline and over-the-top characters, the show deals with real-life issues that women and men both deal with.

Some of the storylines focus on topics like harassment, gentrification and sexism.

Nicole Peterson, a freshman biology major, said, “The show provides a different look for how women handle themselves in relationships. I like the material and hope it has another season.”

She’s Gotta Have It stands out from the rest because it provides something that many other shows do not.

It portrays a woman of color who is finding herself through trials and tribulations, all while knowing her worth.

DeWanda Wise, who plays Darling, said, “There was so much in Nola that I saw in my friends, in myself, in where I was in my early 20s. There was just such a rich and vast life there.”

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Inside interview with artist Kelela

Selena Roberts | Staff Writer

Kelela Mizanekristos, otherwise known as Kelela, is a singer/songwriter who is far from afraid to express herself.

She experiments with her music and seeks to break down barriers with her craft. Kelela is known for her debut mixtape, Cut 4 Me, her EP, Hallucinogen, and her most recent album, Take Me Apart.  Recently, our Arts and Entertainment writer, Selena Roberts, had the pleasure of interviewing her.

SR: What are your musical influences?:

K: I have a lot of different influences. Some are abstract and some are literal. They include Natalie Cole, Joni Mitchell, Janet Jackson, Whitney Houston, and Mariah Carey.

SR: What is your background in music?:

K: Neither of my parents played music. I played the violin for about ten years [starting] in the fourth grade. I would [also] sing in choir.

SR: How would you describe your music?:

K: I would say that it is rooted in R&B. Vocally, that is where I am coming from in terms of style. In terms of production, I am influenced in electronic. When I think about making music on machines, I think of Stevie Wonder, Prince, and Timbaland.

SR: What advice would you give someone who is trying to make it in the music industry?:

K: There are different stages of your journey. Identifying where you are in your journey first is important. There’s a lot of frustration when you do not know where you are.

People [also] need to remember that there’s so much work and so much effort needed. There’s a lot of failure, and not in an abstract sense. It’s important for people to be okay with where they are first in their journey. Think [more] about being honest than being big. Be true to yourself before selling it to other people.

SR: How would you describe your sense of style?:

K: I’m all things. There are different moods for different events that I go to. When I dress for a show, I have to be comfortable. I have to be able to move and jump in [my outfit]. There can’t be any restrictions. It’s hard to pinpoint my actual style. I always wanted to embody different things. There’s an element of futurism. I would say there is something classic that exists in the thread that I like. It’s about mixing and matching.

SR: How do you calm down before a performance?:

K: I practice scales. I’ll practice scales in the shower. It’s a good way to calm down and be in my own universe. I enjoy being quiet. I’ll try to find a way to be confined.

SR: Where do you see yourself in the next 10 years?:

K: Hopefully, there’s elements of this that I don’t know. There’s elements that I can’t predict. Definitely enterprise, building a business that helps other women in the music industry, specifically women of color.

I want to give them a set of tools that will help them navigate the industry. There’s a reality check that women will go through. My interest is to provide an institution for artists, [especially] women of color, to come in, get briefed and get a set of tools to thrive.

There are black people in the industry on the artist perspective; but on the business side, it is shocking to see the lack of people of color.

SR: What would you be doing now if you were not performing?:

K: I would be pursuing a PhD, to be honest. I would be getting [a PhD for] doing the same thing I am doing now through the music platform.

SR: What social media platforms can your fans find you on?:

K: Mainly on Instagram and on Twitter. I have a Facebook page that is less personal, I would say. I am not as active on Snapchat. Those are the main outlets for me.

Want to get to know Kelela a bit more? Check out her latest project, Take Me Apart, available on Apple Music, and follow Kelela on Twitter and Instagram @kelelam.

Marshall Movie Review

Selena Roberts | Staff Writer

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Courtesy of Dahyo Coleman

This time of year promises new films that will be sure to generate excitement from audiences everywhere. One film that is sure to get Oscar buzz is none other than Marshall. Marshall is a unique biopic that showcases the esteemed judge’s early beginnings as a young lawyer working for the NAACP. The film displays Thurgood Marshall’s career and life before his victorious win in Brown VS. Board of Education, the case responsible for desegregating schools in 1954, and his role as the first African American Supreme Court Justice.

The film stars Chadwick Boseman as Thurgood Marshall, Sterling K. Brown as Joseph Spell, Josh Gad as Sam Friedman and Kate Hudson as wealthy socialite Eleanor Strubing. The plot centers on Thurgood Marshall’s attempt to clear an innocent black man’s name, Joseph Spell, after he is accused of sexual assault and attempted murder by his white employer Eleanor Strubing. Joseph struggles to prove his innocence, but with Marshall’s guidance, he is given a fighting chance.

The movie shows a different side of Thurgood Marshall that was not often showed to the public. Viewers get to see him as someone who is righteous, but is willing to go above and beyond even if it means breaking the rules in order to get justice for those who deserve it. One poignant line that Boseman’s character stated during the film was, “I only represent innocent people, people accused because of their race…that’s my mission.”

This is not Boseman’s first time playing an influential figure on the big screen. He first starred as Jackie Robinson in 42 in 2013. He then took on the role of James Brown in Get On Up in 2014. Like his previous roles, Boseman’s role in Marshall did not disappoint.

The movie’s plot correlates with society today, as it is released during a time where many are at odds with the Trump administration. Minorities are still facing opposition from the government. Boseman spoke on how timely the film is. He stated, “It’s so unfortunate that it’s so, so relevant at this time period, but at least we have it to shed light and to give people hope, to remind people. There’s the phrase ‘Make America Great Again,’ but how did we make America great? Who did it? It was Thurgood Marshall who did it.”

Steven Tompson, a freshman political science major, said, “As someone who is aspiring to be a lawyer, I think that it is great to have a movie like this. Not only is it inspiring, but I learned more about someone I consider a hero.”

Dove commercial creates controversy

Selena Roberts | Staff Writer

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Courtesy of Selena Roberts

Dove is known to be an inclusive brand featuring women of different sizes and races in the brand’s advertisements.

Recently, Dove faced controversy due to a commercial featuring an African American model wearing a brown T-shirt who took her shirt off, revealing a white woman wearing a beige shirt. Some people took offense to the ad, saying that it was insensitive and racist. Dove ultimately took the commercial down due to the overwhelming amount of backlash.

This is not the first time Dove has been the center of controversy due to its choice in advertisement. Back in 2011, the brand was under scrutiny after it featured an ad that showed three women in front of an image of different types of skin textures. The white woman was in front of the image displaying soft skin, while the African American woman was standing in front of the picture that showed dry skin. In addition to that, Dove offended some customers again when it included a “normal to dark skin” label on one of its products.

There is a divide between the public’s perceptions of what Dove was trying to convey in its latest ad. Students on campus had mixed views about the promotion. Although the majority of the public seemed to be offended by Dove, others believed the message was taken out of context.

“I did not think that there was anything wrong with the ad,” said Dave Smith, a freshman MBA major from Connecticut. “I thought it was fine.”

Lisa Jenkins, a freshman biology major, said, “I thought that Dove should have known better and, ultimately, they just missed the mark,”

The model featured in the ad, Lola Ogunyemi, made a statement sharing her views on the negative reception the ad received.

“I don’t feel it was racist,” Ogunyemi said. “The screenshots that have taken the media by storm paint a slightly different picture.”

However, the model made it clear that she was not informed by Dove how the commercial would turn out.

“This did not represent the diversity of real beauty which is something Dove is passionate about and is core to our beliefs, and it should not have happened,” the company said in a statement.

The controversy shed light on the ongoing issue that is seen by major companies and their lack of sensitivity.

Earlier this year, Pepsi was under scrutiny because of a commercial featuring Kendall Jenner. Critics claimed that Pepsi was imitating the Black Lives Matter movement and in a way de-escalating the seriousness of the campaign.

Shea Moisture was under fire for its choice of advertisement as well. The brand was accused of having a lack of representation of different hair types. Customers thought the company’s ad was straying from its core values.

 

CoverGirl’s diverse makeover is pretty inspiring

Selena Roberts | Contributing Writer

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Courtesy of Selena Roberts

CoverGirl continues to enhance the diversity in its lineup of ambassadors. New additions
include actress Issa Rae and celebrity chef Ayesha Curry.

The cosmetics brand has made an effort to be more inclusive. Hampton University
students have taken notice.

“It is inspiring to see faces such as Issa and Ayesha as the face of the brand because they
are people who not only look like me, but they are people that I can relate to,” said Hannah Collins, a freshman chemical engineering major from Memphis.

This is not the first time CoverGirl has made news for including diversity in its brand.
Nura Afia, a beauty vlogger, was named an ambassador last year. She was the first woman to wear a hijab in a CoverGirl advertisement. In addition, Maye Musk became the oldest woman to be the face of the brand at age 69.

CoverGirl keeps evolving by adding new faces that inspire women everywhere to
welcome their individuality because that is what makes them beautiful.

Rae and Curry join other celebrities such as Katy Perry, Sofia Vergara, Zendaya and
Janelle Monae as faces of the brand.

Rae has evolved since her “Awkward Black Girl” days on YouTube. She is the author of
a New York Times bestseller, the producer of the hit show “Awkward” on HBO and now the new face of CoverGirl.

“I remember being an awkward black girl in high school, reading the pages of my
favorite magazines, casually flipping through CoverGirl ads,” Rae wrote on Instagram.

“Never in my life did I imagine I’d be one. I am so honored and so excited for what’s to come.” She added, “My character is ever-evolving, and makeup is a tool to help transform my persona.”

It has not been revealed if Rae will have her own makeup line. Still, it is an honor to be
named a CoverGirl ambassador.

Curry has been expanding her brand in the past year as well. She is the host of her own
cooking show, “Ayesha Homemade,” which airs on Food Network; a cookbook author; a
restaurant owner; and is set to release her line of cookware at Target in the upcoming month. In addition to making a brand for herself, she is the wife of NBA superstar Stephen Curry and mother to Riley, age 5, and Ryan, 2.

Ayesha Curry broke the news about CoverGirl via her Instagram account.

“I am so honored and thrilled to join the iconic women of the CoverGirl family and be a
part of a brand that empowers women to embrace their originality,” she said.

CoverGirl announced Curry would have her own line of makeup. She introduced a new
mascara, the Peacock Flare Mascara. The formula of the mascara allows lashes to appear as full as the feathers of a peacock. This product will be available in November.