Watch Episode One Of New Web Series About A Not-So Perfect Preacher ‘Te$timoney’

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by Sergio
September 6, 2013 8:46 AM
15 Comments
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What’s this? A new web series that portrays black preachers as less than perfect? And, I dare say, maybe even hypocritical? I’m there!

And I was just saying to someone the other day that there’s maybe one too many black web series about relationships involving 20-something year olds (yawn) and not enough dealing with other subjects; and along comes this new web series called Te$timoney produced by Michael Greyson, who also directs, and Corey Scales.

Written by J. Sanders Nelson and Grayson, it deals with Rev. Calvin Shephard who finds himself in a conflict. As someone who was formerly involved in the “street life”, Rev. Shephard  “is caught between two worlds and two allegiances. He is a saved man, called by God to preach the gospel. He is a loving father and husband. He is also running from a previous life that is trying to pull him back”..

Starring Calvin Gabriel as Rev. Shephard and Nadine Marissa, the web series will consist of 6 ten-minute episodes.

Here’s Episode One:

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15 Comments

  • Lashawn Vanhook | September 8, 2013 3:19 PMReply

    Looks very interesting. I saw several familiar faces ms Ann and Michael you guys have my support. ONE

  • Phreeze | September 6, 2013 7:18 PMReply

    I watched this thinking "this looks very familiar." Then I got to end and saw the church credit. This was made in the neighborhood I grew up in, Oak Cliff! I'd like to wish the hometown film makers well. I'll be sure to watch the future episodes.

  • cinexa | September 6, 2013 11:19 PM

    Thanks for watching Phreeze. Yeah, that is Metropolitan Baptist Church on Reynoldston. They were very gracious in allowing us access to the sanctuary. OakCliff, Texas baby!

  • ALM | September 6, 2013 3:39 PMReply

    The part with the wife and the deacon felt random and forced (the deacon's audio also was messed up), but otherwise this was fine.

    Man, the guys on the block are paying tithes....Wouldn't that be something? The conversation about "dirty" tithe money is an interesting one. Some pastors will turn their heads and accept the money, and some won't accept the money if they know of the origins. I think most pastors take the money, though.

    The guy on the block was speaking a lot of truth, though.

    I attend church, but you can often find people on the corner with purer hearts than the hearts of those in the church.

  • CareyCarey | September 8, 2013 10:21 AM

    Cool Cinexa, we're in there. It has been a nice conversation.

    Btw, tell Calvin I'd suggest that he work on his delivery. In particular, in reference to the phrase "what leaves the heart will find another's" I would suggest that he find a way to "feel" what he's saying while standing in the pulpit. If he doesn't feel and believe the words he's saying, he will project that uncertainty to the audience. As it stands, in my opinion, his portrayal of a sincere leader/preacher has the smell of a caricature. Granted, his performance /style might be the "entertainment" quality you're looking for because many can relate to that image of a preacher.

    Anyway, if he (the actor) does not believe and feel what he or she is saying, they should not expect me to believe them. Again, I would suggest that Calvin find a little subtle sincerity. Don't get me wrong, it's okay for a pastor to whoop, holler and "preach", but when he's speaking of past transgressions and how he has found a way to overcome them, subtle sincerity works best, imo.

  • Cinexa | September 8, 2013 2:15 AM

    Again, thank you for watching and commenting Carey. Three great things happened in this exchange.
    1. You watched my episode
    2. You paid attention enough to critique it
    3. We talked and gave opinions.......as a filmmaker, this is a win for me.
    If I don't entertain, I feel like I didn't do a good job. If I can also squeeze in a lesson, that's cool too. Get ready for episode 2 .... Coming soon

  • CareyCarey | September 6, 2013 11:00 PM

    Hold up, back up the train. There are more PURER hearts "on the corner" than in the church???!!! Really? I question the church that you attend and how you can validate such a ridiculous assertion.

    @ Cinexa, I would suggest that you study your scripture before giving your whimsical interpretations. To that point, in reference to the Bible, do you even understand the meaning of the word "called" as it's used in the Bible? You apparently believe it's speaking to ministry, it's not. In the Bible there's a parable of The Wedding Banquet which I believe will give you a greater insight into the word "called".

    And... "Carey, pick up a paper, talk to a friend. This is real life happening right in front of us".
    Really, which of my friends would you suggest I call? I could call several in my family who are pastors. I could also call many of my friends who have lost their way (and found their way) who I've sat with while locked behind bars. I mean, what would you suggest I ask them... that's right in front of me? But listen, the devil is always in the details, so what exactly is the story are you telling...and what's the purpose behind telling that story? Are you teaching, pandering, ridiculing or entertaining?

    In short, from what I've read and seen in this clip, there's absolutely nothing YOU can tell me about the "streets" or the Bible. But, of course, this web series might be entertainment for those who love nothing more than throwing shade on the church and those who have absolutely no idea what's happening in the Black Church, other than what they been lead to believe by watching tomfoolery such as this series and The Choir and The Undershepherd...and the 10 o'clock news.

    Anyway, aside from the misleading messages, some of the acting was actually pretty good. Having said that, I am sure you're familiar with the phrase "what leaves the heart will find another's". Well, although the pastor in this series was believable when he was conversing with "friends" and peers, his preaching needs a little work. And, hat tip to the scene where the pastor was approached by a friend from his past.

  • cinexa | September 6, 2013 5:19 PM

    Thank you for watching and commenting ALM. The overall message is one of "God doesn't call the qualified, he qualifies the called". Anyone has the capacity to be a Minister, if they are called. I believe some people limit themselves because of past mistakes. I also believe that you have some people in the "Street" who would love to come to church, but the politics and judgements are too much for them. But the later episodes will reveal more of this and show just who is who.

  • Cinema | September 6, 2013 10:40 AMReply

    Thank you for watching Carey. This is a real story like so many others. It may not be everyone's cup of tea, but many people like to drink it.

  • CareyCarey | September 6, 2013 9:56 AMReply

    Following Sergio's lead... I was just saying to someone the other day that there's maybe one too many black films about charlatan preachers (yawn) and along comes some more tripe called Te$timoney and Issa Rae's pitiful The Choir.

    They should have asked Russ Parr how that worked for him? I mean, I am wondering if anyone has seen that film and if it was a "success"? More importantly, I can't help but wonder who exactly is the audience for this type of propaganda? Surely the producers can't believe they're swimming in Tyler's wake, hanging on his coat, gathering his crowd of "church folks", can they? Well, I am here to tell them they're missing the point and they couldn't carry Tyler's jock strap... for various reasons.

    Anyway, it's such a shame that filmmakers like the aforementioned, who all appear to have the resources and connections to produce a quality film, have decided to resort to this type of madness.

    So please please please, somebody please call the above filmmakers and suggest they move their egos out of the way... employ a focus group ( in-which they have no connection) to determine if there's even a market for this tomfoolery? Or maybe they should simply ask Tyler Perry what they're doing wrong?

  • Cinexa | September 6, 2013 10:58 AM

    Carey, pick up a paper, talk to a friend. This is real life happening right in front of us. Real life " always" makes for great stories no matter how many times its been told.

  • CareyCarey | September 6, 2013 10:38 AM

    Monique, to that I say "you can fool some of the people some of the time..."

  • Monique A Williams | September 6, 2013 10:25 AM

    Welp! I liked it, so I guess they're a market.

  • Cinexa | September 6, 2013 9:50 AMReply

    Thanks for supporting this project Sergio.

  • Cinema | September 6, 2013 10:39 AM

    Thank you for watching Carey. This is a real story like so many others. It may not be everyone's cup of tea, but many people like to drink it.

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