6.30.2013

Black Girls' Night Out: Rachel Zane

Unlike with Jessica Pearson's character, Meghan Markle's character Rachel Zane is one filled with fail.

First off, let me clarify that I really like Meghan Markle.  I think she's beautiful, I think she's a good actress, and I wish her all the best in her career.

My first problem with her characterization isn't strictly limited to her characterization.  On Suits, we have the Two-Negro Maximum Rule at play (a la Franklin & Bash...in the beginning).  We have the older, more experienced Black female character portrayed by Gina Torres.  She's mature, professional, private, and upstanding.

Which means we need her younger counterpart to step in and have the flirty adventures and wear the trendy nail polish.  Fine.  But instead of casting a dark-skinned sistah as a young lawyer, we get a mixie (she herself is a product of BWWM) cast as a paralegal with test anxiety.

Make no mistake; I love my mixed sisters.  I love Angel Coulby, Lenora Crichlow, Megalyn Echikunwoke, Katerina Graham, Persia White, Jurnee Smollett, and Meghan Markle too.  But the consistent casting of a mixie as the female of color love interest grew tiresome eons ago.

Meghan is so light-skinned she could pass for a tanned white girl.  So why not just cast a tanned white girl?  I mean...that's the goal, right?  That's the fantasy - finding a white girl who's naturally blessed with certain physical traits typically belonging to women of color.







Then there's her character.  A paralegal with test anxiety?  Seriously?  Mind you, I've noticed many young, darker-skinned WOC on this show.  They're in the background and they have no lines.  They're (presumably) young lawyers from Harvard, but only the young white male ones get lines and story arcs.

Speaking of young white males, just as Gina Torres gets a younger counterpart, so does Gabriel Macht.  Patrick J. Adams plays Mike Ross, a street kid with an eidetic memory who's posing as a Harvard grad at the law firm.  His being a fraud is somehow supposed to be a mirror of Rachel's plight, but it's not.  He's a fraud - end of story.  If she could get over her anxiety and pass the LSAT, she'd get on with her goal of becoming a lawyer and these two would not be buddies.  She wouldn't even be speaking to him.

But she's here in service of the young white male, which was why it was very hard to screen cap her - almost every scene of hers either includes him or revolves around him.  He's flirting with her, she's helping him with a case, so on and so forth...I knew without reading ahead on Wikipedia that her character would only get fleshed out once the white boy started screwing her, thus making her (truly) relevant.

After a long day of posing as husband and wife on a case (Hey...
doesn't she look just like Eliza Dushku here?).





While I am okay with Gina Torres's character, this character was a fail from the get.  I honestly see her getting axed from the show here soon, a la Ashley from Revenge.  There's only so much they can do with her, and since white boy will be screwing a white chick on the side the whole time anyway, we already know she's not The One.

*rubs temples*  One step forward...three steps back.

14 comments:

  1. PAUSE!

    "Meghan is so light-skinned she could pass for a tanned white girl. So why not just cast a tanned white girl?"

    Look, man, I thought she WAS a tanned white girl! My jaw dropped when I saw her on a list of Black/Mixed/POC actresses. Man, my pocdar wasn't blipping with her at all. *facepalm*

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Girl...she first caught my attention during the 9 seconds I was interested in Fringe and I knew right away she wasn't no white girl.

      Delete
  2. By the way, two Asian women guest starred in the eps I've seen so far, and they were both mixies as well.

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  3. I haven't really watched this show, but just looking at her I didn't know that she was black. I honestly thought that she was mixed, but with Spanish and White or something else. I might watch this show, but I agree with the points you stated above. It gets old - real fast.

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    Replies
    1. You do know "Spanish" is not a race right?

      Delete
  4. I long for the day when TV series will make a comeback and shoddy reality shows and other crappy shows will be a thing of the past? I don't think that it will never be part of our fixture in the near future.

    Anyways... I see where you coming from with Meghan. Its like the producers want an interracial scene, but then they don't. Besides it still the same song. Haven't producers learned anything from Scandal? Then again, were never the intended demographic for consideration for any show. Its all about White society.

    Speaking of shows (not trying to get off the subject) I feel sooo bad for Rochelle Aytes. The woman deserves better.
    Mistresses is nothing but a load of mess! To me, its far worse than Deception.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Its like the producers want an interracial scene, but then they don't.

      Pretty much nails it.

      I feel sooo bad for Rochelle Aytes. The woman deserves better.
      Mistresses is nothing but a load of mess! To me, its far worse than Deception.


      Does somebody else want to take this one for the team? I already sat through every episode of "Deception" and I don't think I can sit through something worse.

      Delete
  5. She's not white? You sure? Cause...

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  6. Is there a chair I can talk to in here? Yes, she's a sistah.

    Am I really the only one who wasn't surprised?

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  7. The Wikipedia pic, I can see it. She's a sistah. On the show, somebody is using Photoshop on her ass.

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    Replies
    1. LOL - I know, right? I just looked at that picture again and was like, "How can they not see it????"

      Delete

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