Tyler Perry

Hi readers,

I just recently started watching Tyler Perry’s The Haves and the Have Nots on Oprah’s network.

I must say what a startling departure from his usual television fare.

I must confess….

I am a total fan of Tyler’s beloved Madea.

Why?

I swear readers, if I didn’t know better, Madea is my grandmother reincarnated!!!!

I remember the first time I became acquainted with the Madea character.

It seemed as if Tyler Perry had a front row seat to my life.

Wow, what a brilliant storyteller……..

Ever since the introduction of this character, he has been bashed for perpetuating stereotypes of African Americans!!!!

It seems some think of Madea as a buffoon.

Tyler made an interesting observation about his Madea creation and the negative reaction to it by some.

Tyler states that he came of age in the Louisiana backwoods from a woman dominated family whereas Spike came of age in the urban North and was reared in a house with a father who was a Jazz musician.

As a 42 year old woman raised in Mississippi by my paternal grandmother, I got it right away with the Medea franchise.

For all of you TP haters out there, understand this about Madea:

As a Southern grandmother, she provides stability and strength for her community.

(Witness this in several movies when she takes in relatives and foster children)

As a Southern grandmother, she provides wisdom to sustain her community.

(Witness this in several movies and plays when her advice heals, strengthens, and nurtures)

Back to the Haves….

As I mentioned earlier, what a departure.

When I first saw the promotions and ads for the new dramatic series I was certain that Tyler was out of his element.

I mean what does a poor kid from the sticks of the Deep South know about the interior lives of the rich and famous?

And if he did have a view, it was only from that of the help!!!!

I thought his show at best would be unconvincing, tired, and trite.

Boy, was I ever wrong!!!!!!

If I didn’t know better, I testify that I was watching a reboot of the popular 1980’s Dallas.

From his rendering of the evil villain, the powerful patriarch pitted against the equally powerful matriarch, he has delivered a sure drama TV classic with a twist….

What is unique-or maybe not-about The Haves… is the depiction of African Americans in positions of power in the business world.

A welcome break from viewing wealthy African Americans as entertainers and sports starts.

Hey-any way you can make it to the top-right?

Equally fascinating is his representation of the poor African American community and the values this community still struggle to uphold.

The Black maid Hannah is my favorite character.

I love her devout honesty grounded in her deep faith.

Last night was very touching when in a poignant scene she got the evil judge/lawyer to pray with her over her wrongfully incarcerated son.

Despite the attacks from other powerful Africa Americans, Hannah holds on to her devout faith.

She has even inspired the series matriarch.

After viewing three consecutive episodes, the verdict?

Tyler has that rare cultural pimp juice!!!!!

By that I mean, he can tell stories across economic racial groups that have a universal appeal and resonate with a large swath of the public.

Tyler has proven that he is equally at home dispensing knowledge about that rare breed of Southern Black grandmothers who can keep it real and the lofty rich and famous who make scheming, cheating and lying a glamorous art form.

Spike always told angry stories from a decidedly masculine point of view.

Not to pit him against Tyler.

It is just a simple matter of two different ends of the African American experience.

One no better than the other.

It’s about time our grandmother’s got respect!!!!!!

Thanks Tyler,

Until next time……