Black women love romance too-By Lisa Marbly-Warir
Ever since we were little girls we have been inundated with the whole fairy-tale aspect of love and relationships—usually from the P.O.V of women who don’t look like us—in movies, or books. Not that-that is an issue—there are plenty of Black writers and movie makers who are writing stories from our P.O.V. although I feel that those stories are often limited to a certain audience even within our own communities—I.e. more urban or gritty, rarely sweet and apple pie-ish. Think of every romance movie you’ve ever watched where a White man is moving heaven and earth to get to the woman he loves, or a chance meeting in a park, or a quaint town etc. I think that’s one reason why IR romance novels, or TV shows that showcase IRR between BW/WM in particular is so popular. We grew up seeing how romantic White men are. Of course anyone married to a non-Black man knows that men are typically the same regardless of race. The grass isn’t necessarily greener on the other side.
(I'm not against IR relationships-that's not the point of this)
I've even written a IRR novel due out 10/3/2016
Under the Irish Moon
but for the most part my stories tend to be strong Black (non-stereotypical) leads.
But there are rarely any movies of positive Black male and female characters coming together in that sappy, whimsical kind of love story that we have grown to love through the rose-tinted glasses of other women. I would love to see sweet, innocent love become the norm for us as well. I’m not saying it doesn’t exist in the real world because it does, but how often do we see it in movies geared towards us? Would we support such a movie? Are we so used to seeing Black women in strife with Black men that a sweet, quirky love story wouldn’t work? Perhaps some movies are out there and I haven’t looked hard enough.
That said—I like watching the-Hallmark channel -and would like to see our version of that. Movies that are non-urban-maybe small town, college campus etc. I know we have Love and Basketball which was very popular, Jason’s Lyric (which was quite steamy) I often wonder if we would support a movie with two Black leads that are non-stereotypical? That’s why I am so excited about shows like Greenleaf, Queen Sugar and even Empire (yes, it’s urban) while they are not romance movies—they for the most part are not stereotypical shows (well Empire is -but I like it anyway)
They are shows about Black characters who have ups, downs, loves, hurts etc. like anybody else. For a long time there were very limited aspects of our lives shown on TV-particularly us as women. We were/are often portrayed as asexual, Jezebel’s, mother figures unloved or abused as if that was the only way to define us—there seemed to be no vulnerable, soft feminine roles for us and I get that some in our communities want to see the bad-ass, hardened take no guff power woman, but that often leaves us seemingly super human void of emotions and incapable of being loved or cherished.
What type of Black romance storyline would you like to see?
Are there certain actors/actresses you would like to see in those roles?
Lisa's books http://amzn.to/2d6MKID