The Learning Channel, TLC, has unleashed a new
beast series for its end of Summer lineup, Here Comes Honey boo boo. The show features YouTube sensation Alana, the 6-year-old sassy pageant contestant from Toddlers and Tiaras, and her non-traditional American, but stereotypical Georgian, family. Reality show vultures jumped on the young comedic wonder for her wittiness and what some are calling inflection of audacious black feminine vernacular. Most of the backlash about Alana’s colorful personality comes from the black community, not to say white America doesn’t have an opinion about this aberrant breakout star.
Some black commentators feel Alana is performing and the series is a charade lampooning blackness. But why do black people have to accept responsibility for a grammatically impaired, couponing pageant mom and her loud, brazen daughter who hollas for a dolla? We don’t! If anything black people can sympathesize with Alana because of the media’s manipulation of her innocence and vulnerability. Yes vulnerability. Not discounting Alana and her family’s white privilege, they still come from a marginalized background that the entertainment industry loves to exploit.
What people have to realize is that nothing is off limits and anything that sells is open game. Personally, I like
honeybooboo Alana, but I must admit when I first saw her clip I was surprised at the phrases and gestures this child chose during her TT commentary. But did I think she was mocking black culture? No, she’s six and her mother, maybe with less sass, speaks in the same manner. Admittingly, black people behaving or performing in this manner looks to much like cooning and would definitely spark controversy. But I guess it’s ok for honeybooboo to stack her coins because this family has no connection to this country’s long history of preying on marginalized people who look and sound different for entertainment. I hope she makes enough money to buy a farm of glity’s.