6.30.2013

Black Girls' Night Out: Jessica Pearson

I chose this pic to show how her
wardrobe is always on point.
Due to popular demand, I've started watching Suits.

I'll start with the good.  Gina Torres, a.k.a. Perfection Herself, portrays Jessica Pearson, a managing partner at Pearson Hardman, an upscale New York law firm that only hires graduates from Harvard.  She's a regular cast member, which means she's educated, in charge, and in every episode.

That's pretty much where the good ends.

The show is the wealthier, ritzier version of Franklin & Bash (and we saw how that turned out); the focus is on two white guys.  The unbeatable lawyer and his conveniently-a-rare genius sidekick.  Both are - by white standards - really desirable, so much that they can nail anyone they set their mind to.

You know where this is going before it even begins.

Since it's Season 1 I'm watching, I'm not expecting the writers to dive right into everyone's personal lives.  The writers want to establish the lawyer side of the characters first, and I can totally respect that.  In the meantime, I like how Jessica is firmly established - through audio and visual as the leader of the pack.  In every meeting, she sits at the head of the table and runs the show.



But despite her role, her character heavily relies on Harvey Specter, the prized lawyer she sent to Harvard and whom she relies on a bit too heavily at times (of course, if she didn't need him so much, we wouldn't have a show).  In the very first episode, she's shown as being incapable of handling an asshole client, so she sends Harvey a text desperately stating, I need you.









It's not hard to make Gina Torres look good, but her stylist on the show is clearly earning their keep.  Her hair, makeup, and wardrobe reflect her character appropriately: a self-made millionaire with a flawless sense of style.

I don't think I need to explain the importance of this to Black female viewers; too often Black women are made to look as plain as possible in TV and film.  That's why the beauty of so many Black actresses goes unsung.



The chemistry between lead actor Gabriel Macht (he plays Harvey Specter) and Gina Torres is commendable.  Both are clearly great actors, but their chemistry is not the typical kind.  They simply go well together and are believable onscreen (they're not lovers, by the way).


"...stealing my drink and e'rythang...."
Although they're not a couple, Harvey is visibly affected when he learns Jessica was married at one point and never told him...which, of course, makes us wonder where the writers are going with this.



This occurs in an episode where the (presumably white) writers try to flesh out some of Jessica's backstory, and quite predictably, they use Cliched Black Drama.  Jessica's ex-husband shows up as a client and needs her to help out of a jam (he's also a self-made millionaire).  We find out he was screwing someone else while they were married (Lisa, portrayed by the fabulous Sharon Leal), which makes both women uncomfortable during the case.

And if you're rolling your eyes at that, keep in mind that Jessica and Quentin Sainz (her ex) were married but fell out of love.  Quentin and Lisa are supposedly madly in love...but he hasn't married her, and by the end of the episode, we're not shown he has any plans to. Once again, on a show where two white guys are the heroes, the Black dude is trifling.

Meanwhile, Harvey is in the unenviable position of subtly refereeing two mutually hostile Black women.



*crosses fingers and hopes nobody pulls out any weave*
The lighting hit her just right in this one, so I had to add it
I'll keep watching for now (I believe Season 2 is already in my queue), but I'm not going to hold my breath.  Though Suits does cleanse the nasty after taste of Franklin & Bash, the trust is already gone, as you will see with the next WOC character profile I do for this show.

Buckle up, ladies...Meghan Markle as the paralegal Rachel Zane is next and it's going to be a buuuuumpy ride.

6 comments:

  1. Yeah, the writers are definitely white and male...and prolly this is all they want to know of the lives of sistahs. There are a million and one other conflicts they could have used instead of sistahs fighting over a man. *rolls eyes* But Gina looks amazing, as usual. Just classy and elegant and stunning.

    ReplyDelete
  2. At the end of last season, she completely annihilated Harvey and reminded him who the boss is. Lol of couse the tumblr fangirls are calling her a bitch.

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    Replies
    1. Now come on, Elle. You know she got tooooo much melanin to be 'assertive'!

      They can eat 32 flavours of d*ck. Jessica is boss for a reason.

      Delete
  3. *crosses fingers and hopes nobody pulls out any weave*

    *DED*

    you going to hell for that one. ROFLMAO!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. *nods* Occupational hazard.

      Why am I not surprised to see you on this post. I mean, gee...what on earth could've possibly drawn you here? *grins*

      Delete
    2. I see the commercials for this all of the time but this comment is going to make me have to check it out.
      That was all kinds of wrong (but then again we all know that the truth hurts)...

      Delete

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