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BET Teases 2012/2013 Season Slate (Expect Original Scripted Shows From Wayans Family, New Police Drama & More)

Television
by Tambay A. Obenson
February 8, 2012 1:12 PM
7 Comments
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BET

BET has unveiled its programming development slate for the network's 2012/2013 season, which includes several original scripted shows that, as the L.A. Times puts it, "emphasize positive aspects of African American culture."

I usually run in the other direction when I read or hear words like that. The sum total of our experiences divided between either *positive* or *negative*. It really all isn't (or shouldn't be) so simplistically defined.

Obviously BET has been under public scrutiny for a number of years now for its narrow depictions of black American life, which likely is of some influence on this shift - a shift that will see brand new scripted comedies and dramas from the likes of the Wayans family (titled Second Generation and featuring the younger Wayans - kids of the Living Color Wayans siblings), Steve Harvey, T.D. Jakes, Jamie Foxx and others.

Also in development is a gritty police drama (the network's first ever) from Reggie Bythewood titled Gun Hill, which will star Larenz Tate, and is described as "a twisted spin to the biblical Cain and Abel story," centered on the lives of identical twins - one a cop, the other a con.

Also planned is a rebooting of Showtime At the Apollo.

Said the network's president of original programming, Loretha Jones,"We realize that BET will never be all things to all black people... But we felt we could be more. The diversity of projects shows how we can serve different parts of our demographic while being able to bring the BET voice to different genres."

The full next season slate will be unveiled in early summer.

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7 Comments

  • tay | April 22, 2012 11:59 AMReply

    I wish they would really cut out all the re-runs. I would love to see something new. Can we get comic view back? I really miss that.

  • illthoughts | February 9, 2012 12:55 PMReply

    Well, it's about time. I would still rather them put all their money together and get one channel right first instead of having three or four wack stations. All these stations just show re-runs and a plethora of reality shows. I want a show like 24 with a black lead. The Closer with a black woman as the star. So far most of the shows we have are very lame but i guess we have to start somewhere.

  • Nadine | February 9, 2012 9:44 AMReply

    Well this is a testament to the importance of competition. With all of these new ventures, Bounce, OWN (you know what I mean), etc... not to mention TV ONE (they are trying to do better) looking to fill the chasm of "positive imagery" left by BET and commercial television (which is dividing the Black community by gender), BET can see the ariting on the wall. Everytime I type BET, I feel the need to spit, quite honestly... NOW they decide to get positive? After ALL OF THESE YEARS?!?!? Well, BET can only go up from here, I guess.

    As for using terms such as positive or negative, TAMBAY, being academic does not always mean be convoluted... The best academic writings are clear, to the point, and accessible (which I don't guarantee this, my comment, to be). Using terms such as "Positive" and "Negative" , to me, seems most apropos and clear with "Good" and "Bad" being the only two words clearer and more profound. "Race", "racism", prejudice, "pigmentocracy", "patriarchy", sexism, classism, etc... all systemic ills categorize through "good" and "bad". Racism - "White - Good" - "Black - Bad", Pigmentocracy (another form of racism) - "Light - Good" "Dark - Bad"; Patriarchy - "Male - Good" "Female - Bad", Classism "Middle Class - Good" - "Lower Class (a.k.a. GHETTO) - Bad"and so on... so yes, it is deep, but not complicated. Also, because these terms are not used to analyze White/Commercial television doesn't mean that they should not be applied to Black centered television thereby making it unnecessarily complicated for those critiquing Black centered television... how about we apply "negative" and "positive" to White/commercial television instead? It's really easy. "White woman - Good (at all times - even when a villain)" "Black man - Good" "Black man - White Woman - Good" "Black woman - Bad" "Black man - Black woman - Bad" "White man - Bad/Good" - White man - White Woman - Good" "White man- Black Man- Good", White man - Black woman - your show or storyline gets dropped ;)

  • Cynthia | February 9, 2012 12:07 AMReply

    Am I the only one excited about the return of Showtime At The Apollo? Definitely interested in Gun Hill also.

  • biwtican | February 8, 2012 9:41 PMReply

    there are more old shows and movies they could use to fill out their programing. the new stuff is alright but the network needs balance. we need to constantly revisit our past and history to make us relevant to the next generation. there are also film and tv from our cousins in south america, carribbean, europe, and africa that could be used.

  • jmac | February 8, 2012 8:49 PMReply

    Now that there's more networks competing for black viewers they want to be "positive." F you BET. You'd go back to trash in a second if the other black networks drop into oblivion.

  • Masha Dowell | February 8, 2012 2:23 PMReply

    Good for them. I pray their programming improves.

    - Masha Dowell
    Filmmaker/Actress
    www.mashadowell.com

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