SNL, who?! It’s time for the black ladies to reign supreme in the sketch comedy world!
Cue HBO’s A Black Lady Sketch Show.
Per the upcoming show’s official press release:
A BLACK LADY SKETCH SHOW is a narrative series set in a limitless magical reality full of dynamic, hilarious characters and celebrity guests. The show presents sketches performed by a core cast of black women, including Robin Thede, Ashley Nicole Black, Gabrielle Dennis and Quinta Brunson.
Creator/executive producer/writer/star, Robin Thede; executive producer, Issa Rae for Issa Rae Productions; executive producers, Dave Becky, Jonathan Berry for 3 Arts Entertainment; executive producers, Tony Hernandez, Brooke Posch for JAX Media; head writer/co-executive producer: Lauren Ashley Smith; producers, Deniese Davis, Montrel McKay for Issa Rae Productions; producer, John Skidmore for JAX Media.
The trailer begins with a group of black girls hiking and hilariously realizing my greatest hiking fear (falling off the edge) and ends with a slurring sista comparing the crowd to her ex-boyfriends. Plus, Megan Thee Stallion’s “Hot Girl” can be heard as she implores us not to “get mad ho, get a bag ho.”
But, the most apparent aspect of the trailer is the guest star list! When I say “everybody and their mama,” is in the first season of this show, I truly mean it. Seriously, one of the best black moms of Hollywood, Angela Bassett is in it. You can also spot talents such as Laverne Cox, Yvonne Orji, David Alan Grier, Larry Wilmore, Issa Rae, Yvette Nicole Brown, Kelly Rowland, Loretta Devine and more. All of the guest spots!
While enjoying the 25th Essence Festival in New Orleans, I attended the “HBO POV: Black Ladies in Comedy Brunch,” which featured a panel with Natasha Rothwell (Insecure) as well as A Black Lady Sketch Show’s director Dime Davis and Head Writer Lauren Ashley Smith. The panel was moderated by Crissle West of the popular podcast, The Read. With this upcoming show, both Davis and Smith are making history as the first black woman director and black woman head writer of a sketch comedy show, respectively. Wow.
When A Black Lady Sketch Show was pitched to Davis to direct, it was summed up in three words: “cinematic, grounded and magical.”
“We have a room full of black women and so many different types of black women,” Smith mused during the panel. “They are the best comedy writers I’ve ever worked with in my career. The smartest, the funniest, the most creative, the most talented. So, what I hope people see is that when you give us the chance and when you let us in the world, you get gold.”
“There is nothing like a black woman,” Davis noted as I watched the figurative mic drop onto the floor. Period.
A Black Lady Sketch Show premieres on HBO Friday, Aug. 2 at 11 p.m. ET / PT.