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“Black shows like Insecure have this uphill climb,” Luvvie Ajayi, creator of the Mobb Deep Signature Shirt besides I will buy this culture blog Awesomely Luvvie and author of the forthcoming book Professional Troublemaker, told Vogue. Ajayi, HBO’s resident season-four Insecure recapper, pointed to the instant praise lavished upon Lena Dunham from the inception of Girls, another HBO show about four best friends finding themselves in love and career. Like Dunham, Rae is an executive producer, writer, and star, but Insecure has had a slow climb to Emmy attention, taking four seasons for the Television Academy to take notice. “It’s indicative of the way the entertainment industry others Black creators,” Ajayi said.
Insecure has always been a show of its time—it kicked off with Issa going viral for all the Mobb Deep Signature Shirt besides I will buy this wrong reasons; later, awkwardness reigned as Issa’s woke white coworkers at a satirical nonprofit named We Got Y’All attempted to school her on racism. And the show has long been embraced by Black fans: “It’s a show that is not caring about the white gaze of it all,” Ajayi told me. But in a season of racial reckoning, amid an influx of academic, antiracist reading lists, it would behoove prestige-TV aficionados to set down White Fragility and instead binge Insecure, a captivating, nuanced story of Black love, sex, friendship, and ambition. “We think about Black excellence as the woman who always looks like she has her shit together, the woman who shows up in a room and owns the space,” Ajayi said. “The power of what Issa is creating is that now Black excellence looks like the insecure black girls. It looks like the girls who might not feel like they have their shit together and are trying to figure it out.”