So Here’s What Happened in Novemeber

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Thanks for tuning into another episode of So Here’s What Happened!

This time Carolyn and LaNeysha discuss their top picks for the month of November. LaNeysha discusses Blair Imani’s new book Modern Herstory, which takes a radically inclusive approach to modern history and celebrating the women and nonbinary figures throughout it. Then it’s onto TV where the Carolyn and LaNeysha get into Fox’s 911 and ABC’s A Million Little Things. Lastly this month was packed with some great movie releases and the ladies really dive into all of the things they liked and didn’t like in Creed II and Widows.

Spoiler Warning: A Million Little Things, Creed II, Widows

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Top Reads 

Modern Herstory

Blair Imani’s MODERN HERSTORY is a compilation of biographical one-page stories and portraits of 70 diverse girls, women, and nonbinary persons from the 20th and 21st centuries. This book focuses on individuals, many of whom belong to underrepresented groups, and have all played or currently play a role in rewriting history and changing the way we view and navigate the world for the better. Issa Rae, Allison Renville, Carmen Perez, Rihanna and Mari Copeny aka “Little Miss Flint are just a few of the impressive figures covered in this book. 

Imani’s work doesn’t only give a thorough biography of each figure, it also goes the extra mile to educate readers with an extensive glossary and references that are helpful for additional research and learning. I highly recommend this book for readers of all ages. In my honest opinion, this is a book that should be added to schools across the country.

Top TV

9-1-1

In the second season of FOX’s hit drama about L.A. first responders, the crew deals with the aftershocks of a major natural disaster, broken hearts and new relationships. With a strong first season that did a great job of introducing characters like Athena (Angela Basset) and Buck (Oliver Stark), season 2 continued to show us who our favorite characters are as individuals which for a show with a racially diverse cast is important. It’s not often in television shows that all characters in an ensemble cast are given equal time to be explored and developed.

What 9-1-1 also does well is how issues such as race, sexism and domestic abuse are written. With all the drama surrounding the emergencies – which can get pretty wild and intense ­– the writers and actors all pay careful attention to the messages being given, and how they could be perceived. I highly recommend the show for anyone who wants to see a show with an amazing cast and crazy emergency rescue situations straight out of the headlines.

A Million Little Things

A group of friends from Boston bonded under some unexpected circumstances ten years ago. Over the years some have gained success, others are struggling with their careers and relationships, but all of them feel stuck in they’re lives. When Jonathan (Ron Livingston), the friend that seemed to have it all together and living the dream, dies unexpectedly, it’s just the realization the others need that they have to finally start being real and open up to one another again.

When I first saw the promo for this show I didn’t think much of it and was concerned of how they were going to approach the topics of mental health and suicide, and I’m glad to say that I’m impressed with how well the show address them. While yes, it is a drama where a lot of secrets come to light as the story unfolds, but their dedication to talking about depression as a serious disease is greatly appreciated and needed.

Top Movies

Creed II

It’s been three years since Adonis Creed (Michael B. Jordan) entered the professional boxing world in Creed. During those years he’s gained worldwide fame, love, and most recently the WBC World Heavyweight Championship. As he begins to start a new chapter of his life with his fiancée Bianca Taylor (Tessa Thompson) a new obstacle arises when a challenger that has ties to his father’s past arrives and sets Adonis on a path of revenge, redemption, and rediscovery.  

In short, this is a great boxing movie but not a great movie in general. Creed II has what every great sports movie needs, training montages, motivational speeches, and the story of a fallen hero that gets back up again. But, most of our disappointment stems from the lacking character development, especially when it came to Bianca. While Thompson gives an amazing performance, it is unfortunate that her character fails The Kent Test (created by Clarkisha Kent), furthermore, we found ourselves wishing to see more maturity and growth in Adonis from the first movie to now. 

 

Widows

One of the best films of 2018 is the dramatic heist film Widows by Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave) and co-written by Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl). Filled with amazing performances from actors like Viola Davis, Bryan Tyree Henry, Daniel Kaluuya and Michelle Rodriguez, the films uses the planning and execution of a heist as the foundation on which subjects like race, classism and political corruption are built and examined.

Apart from it’s an engaging storyline, what makes Widows such as impressive and admirable film is that it’s one of the few films in 2018 that has a main cast and characters made up of women of different races and from cultures. It is a film that can be re-watched multiples times and never becomes boring because you notice something new every time, whether it’s in the dialogue, direction or set design.

You can read Carolyn’s review of Widows here. Widows is currently showing in a theatre near you.