A Professor’s Thoughts

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts..., Dr. G's Pop Culture Corner (PCC), On the Desk...

Dr. G’s Pop Culture Corner (PCC)

I just love when a new series effortlessly draws you so that you gotta come back for more! I know it’s early but I’m hooked! Check out below for more of my thoughts on The CW’s “Naomi”…

And don’t forget if you have something in mind that you would like for me to “share my 2 cents” make sure to sound off in the comments!!

Episode #2: “Unidentified Flying Object”* (directed by DeMane Davis)

*Friendly reminder the new episodes of “Naomi” debut Tuesdays at 9 pm/ET on The CW and if you miss it you can catch it the next day via The CW app.

Posted in Conversations with Beloved & Kindred, On The Radar

Guess Who’s Back…Season 2 of “Conversations With Beloved and Kindred”

“Sit back and wait to hear a slammin track…Rockin jams by popular demand, I’m back” ~Rakim, ‘Guess Who’s Back’

WE ARE BACK for another season of “Conversations with Beloved and Kindred!” And we are hyped and excited to get back to it!! Did you miss us?!! Well we missed you!!

Kicking off Black History Month, in this second season Dr. Robinson and I are looking forward to bringing you more intellectual commentary as we dive into the Horror and Thriller film genre!

In the past five years since Jordan Peele’s 2017 film Get Out debut on Hollywood screens the genre horror has really picked up steam and garnered new audiences. But what about Black horror and thrillers specifically?? Although not a new genre it has not received the same amount of attention as other horror films. So Dr. Robinson and I want to shed light on some seminal, classic Black horror and thriller films as well as some newcomers that are worthy of your viewing!!

As noted by horror writer and educator Tananarive Due “We’ve always loved horror, it’s just that, unfortunately, horror has not always loved us”. Well we hope that with each episode we can bring to you this season we share some love and appreciation to the Blackness in horror!!

And just in case you need a little refresher or you are new to the series, Conversations with Beloved & Kindred  is a web series in collaboration with the Program & Outreach Division at Auburn Avenue Research Library (Atlanta, GA) hosted by two Black feminist creatives myself Dr. Grace D. Gipson (Virginia Commonwealth University) and Dr. Kaniqua Robinson (Furman University). Through each episode, we talk about creative works (i.e. literature, film, television, and art) that are grounded in the Black experience. Following in the footsteps of two legendary women Toni Morrison and Octavia Butler, Gipson and Robinson seek to fill in the gaps of Black history by reimagining a supernatural Black past and present, while giving voice to the silenced narratives.

So stay tuned!! Mark your calendars and save the date, February 10th will be here before you know it!!

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Posted in Feature Spotlight, On The Radar

For All My Readers Out There!!

So as I was going through my emails this weekend (the neverending saga lol), I came across one from my colleague about a new Black-owned bookstore opening up here in Richmond. I immediately clicked on the message to get more info on this discovery!!

For all my Richmond folks, or folks who will be coming through the area there is a new bookstore coming to the Shockoe Slip area in February 5th, 2022 (right around the corner) called “The Book Bar”!!

The Book Bar is “a Black-owned, woman-owned bookstore that centers BIPOC authors and brands in effort to uplift and support a culture that is often silenced.” Owned by New Jersey native Krystle Dandridge, The Book Bar will be one of the few Black-owned bookstores in Richmond. The importance of having a space such as this is very personal for Dandridge, “growing up, I don’t think I walked into any business where the owner looked like me,” she says. “Worked there? Yes. But owned it? No. Representation matters. I used to walk into any bookstore and it was difficult to find books by authors who look like me. It’s just not considered what is mainstream even though there are a lot of them out there. Our country is diverse, so I wanted to create a space where folks can find diverse reads.”

The Book Bar logo

For me this is essential as well, considering I am always trying to find safe spaces to chill and relax as well as support. [The Book Bar has also be added to my list of Black owned bookstores, which you can find in the “Resource Guide” section.] And as an added bonus a potential new hang out spot!!

Intentional Reading | Books | Style Weekly - Richmond, VA local news, arts,  and events.
The Book Bar owner Kyrstle Dandridge (Photo credit: Scott Elmquist)

In addition to this being a bookstore customers will also be able to support and purchase from other vendors and Black-owned businesses. And if you want a little something extra you can take part in the quarterly subscription box, which includes a book and a range of products (i.e. wine, bath bombs, socks and snacks). And as you shop, customers will be able to enjoy a lounge style setting with relaxing R&B and neo soul vibes as their soundtrack to keep you in the mood.

Let me just say I look very much to visiting The Book Bar and making some regular purchases!!

And when it is all said and done, mark your calendars, get your coins ready, and if you are out of town (prepare for a visit)!! Now while you wait for the physical grand opening (Feb. 5th) make sure to check out The Book Bar online at rvabookbar.com as well their corresponding social media outlets: Facebook, Instagram= @rvabookbar , and YouTube!!

Happy Reading & Happy Shopping!!

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts..., Dr. G's Pop Culture Corner, On the Desk...

Dr. G’s Pop Culture Corner (PCC)

Family and Friends!! I got something new for you!! So I wanted to try something different in video form. Dr. G’s Pop Culture Corner (PCC) is a opportunity for me to blerd out about a new tv show, film, commercial, and/or significant moment in pop culture. Thus, I figure why not try this out with the new CW television series “Naomi”! Now before we get to the video let me give you a little background on the show from The CW site:

This DC drama follows the journey of a cool, confident, comic book-loving teenager as she pursues her hidden destiny. When a supernatural event shakes her hometown of Port Oswego to the core, Naomi sets out to uncover its origins.

The series is created by Ava Duvernay & Jill Blankenship; it is also based on the comic book of the same name co-written by Brian Michael Bendis & David F. Walker and illustrated by Jamal Campbell.

Each episode will range from 10-15 minutes, enough to wet the palette.

So without further ado… Episode #1: “Don’t Believe Everything You Think” (directed by Amanda Marsalis)

Trust me when I say, this series is worth the watch!!

And if you have something in mind that you would like for me to “share my 2 cents” make sure to sound off in the comments!!

Also, as a reminder the new episodes of “Naomi” debut Tuesdays at 9 pm/ET on The CW and if you miss it you can catch it the next day via The CW app.

Photo by Wallace Chuck on Pexels.com
Posted in Feature Spotlight, Monthly Book Recommendations, On the Desk...

Dr. G’s Monthly Book Recommendations-January 2022

It’s a new year, a new month, and I got a new set of books for you to put in your shopping cart, which will eventually make it to your bookshelf or e-reader device!! As always I am excited to share with you some literary jewels!!

Photo by Perfecto Capucine on Pexels.com

This month I got a nice selection of books ranging from historical fiction, YA psychological thrillers, LGBTQ+, urban fiction, coming of age and stories from the African diaspora.

So make sure you pre-order, add to your cart, support your local bookstores and remember sharing is caring!!

And remember you can always go back and check out the previous month’s list and my recommendations from 2021 in the “Resource” section of the website!!

~Dr. G

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts..., Feature Spotlight

Black Future Feminist Turns One!!

Guess who just turned 1 today?!!

Wow I cannot believe this time last year I launched my website Black Future Feminist!! A place that brings some culture, keeps you in the loop on television and film, adds to your book collection, and shares some good ol’ pop culture commentary. Each day I feel like I’m still growing, but I embrace that 100%!!

Ahhhhh…It feels like yesterday that I broke out of my shell and shared a little bit of me with you!

So stay tuned for more commentary, book recommendations, reviews, trailers, professional and personal stuff, and so much more!!

One year down…Many more to go!!

~Dr. G

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!, On The Radar

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

It’s 2022!! It’s a new year and I can’t wait to share these hot new trailers!! This week I got you covered in the television world!! Plenty of shows to keep you busy and occupied! Check them out below:

Season 2-Cheers (Streaming on Netflix January 12th)

The Afterparty (Streaming on Apple TV+ January 28th )

Monarch (Streaming on Fox January 30th)

Season 2-Raised by Wolves (Streaming on HBO Max February 3rd)

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Streaming on Prime Video February 18th)

Posted in Holiday Celebration!!

Happy New Year!! Welcome 2022!!

It’s 2022 and I welcome you with open arms! Another year to revise and edit, change the game plan, create a new vision, and improve on existing ventures!!

Remember you are the author your book, so let’s start cranking out those chapters!!

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

“I hope you realize that every day is a fresh start for you. That every sunrise is a new chapter in your life waiting to be written.” ~Juansen Dizon

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts..., On the Desk...

Closing Out Another Year…Saying Goodbye to 2021!!

Another day gone, Another month passed, Another year for the books. 2021 was meant to be a year of recovery and renewal, and in many ways it was just that and in others…well I have no words to describe it. For me personally 2021 was a year of celebrations, milestones, and eye-opening experiences. So much happened that I had to put it in a post, and even when I think about all that I do remember there is still so much more that happened that I probably missed.

Alright because there is no avoiding this topic COVID-19…In 2021 we finally got vaccines and boosters…A few variants named Delta and Omicron would rock the world and really shake things up…We would have a few celebrities who all of sudden became PhD’s and MD’s over night, overshared, or did foolish things under the umbrella of corona (yep talking about you Nicki Minaj, Gal Gadot, Antonio Brown, Aaron Rodgers)…CDC shortening the quarantine time

Through this recovery and renewal we did get to see our favorite sports games in full swing with the 2020 Summer Olympics happening in July…the Milwaukee Bucks winning the NBA Championship 50 years since their last one…that UCLA vs. Gonzaga NCAA Final Four match-up…and in true fashion the induction of Kobe Bryant into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame 

We FINALLY got that Justice League: Snyder Cut (worth every bit of the 4 hours and 2 mins)…We were blessed with Nia DaCosta’s Candyman and the fineness that is Yahya Abdul-Mateen II…I will never look at Red-Light, Green-Light the same, Thank you “Squid Game”….As I said in a previous post we saw the end of an era with the series finale of Issa Rae’s “Insecure” (THANK YOU!! THANK YOU!!) this show’s impact goes way beyond the screen…It felt good to be back in the movie theaters even if I was masked up…HBO Max’s “Succession” and “And Just Like That”…Lady Gaga and House of Gucci…The MCU came back strong on both television and film…and we also got Coming 2 America

In the music world we got some closure with Britney Spear conservatorship…a new album “Heaux Tales” from Jazmine Sullivan (we had been waiting since 2015), Thank you Jazmine!!…Questlove brought us “Summer of Soul” (a true gift that you can check out on Hulu)…Travis Scott & Astroworld… Verzuz gave us Chaka Khan/Stephanie Mills, Keith Sweat/Bobby Brown, Bone Thugs-n-Harmony and Three Six Mafia, Big Daddy Kane/KRS-One

As the title of this post reads, “Saying Goodbye to 2021” there are a few things that simply get a N’SYNC ‘Bye Bye’ and nothing more. We got to say #ByeBye to #45 and good riddance. #ByeBye to the Cuomo Brothers. #ByeBye to the Robert E. Lee statue in Richmond, VA, definitely glad I do not have to pass that anymore.

The Oh My Goodness Moments…January 6th-Capitol Attack (I remember that day so vividly)…that Meghan and Harry interview with Oprah…the partial collapse of a 12-story condominium in Surfside, Florida…Juneteenth became a federal holiday…Lil Nas X shoe saga…Amanda Gorman’s “The Hill We Climb”

Convictions were handed down to Derek Chauvin, Travis McMichael, Gregory McMichael, William “Roddie” Bryan, Kim Potter, Ghislaine Maxwell and for a few moments the families of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Daunte Wright and the numerous girls and teens were given some sort of justice.

Oh and we can’t for get the random things that elevated our lives, changed the game, and even give the side-eye. Who would have thought the air fryer would make such a huge impact. Total Game Changer!! A few smh moments like the #MilkcrateChallenge, the coin shortage, Bernie Sanders mittens, The Weeknd’s performance at Super Bowl LV, Clubhouse came and made a splash and well…and the viral video of the white woman hiding a stuffed Lynx cat in her bosom…the petition to stop interviewing Will and Jada Pinkett Smith

Celebrating Life…A Memorial…Just when I think I get over one loss, then comes another and another…2021 is no different. Before January 2021 ended we lost a gentle soul of a woman Cicely Tyson. I had just picked up her memoir and was preparing to dive in, let’s just say her presence was definitely felt as I voraciously read through each page. Tyson would only be the beginning…We would also lose some heavy hitters in the acting world my DST soror Suzzane Douglas, Christopher Plummer, Ed Asner, Micheal K. Williams (This man was just hitting his prime!! You definitely have to check out his catalog of work), Melvin Van Peebles…some HUGE icons that really hit home for me Anne Rice, Beverly Clearly (need to go pull out my Ramona Quimby & Beezus and Ramona books), archbishop Desmond Tutu, bell hooks (her work will forever live through my research), Gloria Richardson (a civil right pioneer)…music legends Mary Wilson, Biz Markie and DMX…Sports legends Hank Aaron, John Madden (I just knew he would live forever), Tommy Lasorda, Elgin Baylor, Leon Spinks…the first African American Secretary of State Colin Powell…Prince Phillip…cultural personality Larry King…and a final tribute Men’s fashion style icon Virgil Abloh…

Let’s Talk Mental Health…Thank you Simone Biles and Naomi Osaka for giving us a live and in living color definition of mental health preservation…

The Elements definitely had their way in 2021 with the tornadoes ripping through Kentucky and other parts of the Midwest and South…Hurricane Ida…Winter Storm in Texas…Wild fires in Colorado…Heatwave in Oregon

Can’t forget some #DropTheMic Moments Nikole Hannah-Jones being denied tenure at UNC-Chapel Hill but then making a boss move becoming the inaugural Knight Chair in Race and Journalism at Howard University’s School of Communications…HBCU’s partnering with the tech world to address the diversity gap…Joy Reid becoming the first Black woman to host a primetime talk show on a major network (MSNBC)…Deion Sanders changing the football game via HBCU Jackson State University…

2021 also brought us a lot of Fashion Moments ranging from Michelle Obama and Amanda Gorman’s inauguration outfits…the Met Gala…Pyer Moss (Kerby Jean Raymond) became the first Black designer to present at Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week (C’est Magnifique!!)

Now personally 2021 was the year I turned 40, I got to go on a few trips in and out of the U.S. (Oh I how I miss that Dominican coffee and beautiful sunshine)…I was back in-person in the classroom…I dealt with trauma, anxiety, and depression (always a work in progress)…I made it through my first year as a tenure-track professor…I got Vaxxed and Boosted…learned a lot more about myself…continued to navigate finding that ultimate balance…and one of my proudest moments, I launched Black Future Feminist!!

We will see what 2022 brings us…

~Dr. G

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts..., On The Radar

Dr. G’s Pop Culture Faves-A Year in Review

2021 is just about over, but not before I share a few of my pop culture faves!! I wanted to compile a list of few of favorite shows, movies, comic books, documentaries, short films, podcasts, and soundtracks that made an impact on me in a major way this year!!

These are a few of my favorite things from 2021…Check them out below*:

  • Comic Books/Graphic Novels
  • Eve (Victor LaValle, Boom! Studios)
  • Far Sector (N.K. Jemisin/Jamal Campbell, DC Comics)
  • Nubia and the Amazons (Stephanie Williams/Ayala Vita, DC Comics)
  • Wake: The Hidden History of Women-Led Slave Revolts (Rebecca Hall/Penguin Books)
  • Run: Book One (John Lewis/Andrew Aydin/Nate Powell/L. Fury, Abrams Books)
  • Bitter Root (David Walker/Chuck Brown/Image Comics)
  • Podcasts: True-crime reigned supreme in this category!! Gotta love a good mystery.
  • Jemele Hill is Unbothered
  • Suspect
  • Over My Dead Body
  • Dr. Death
  • Movies
  • The Harder They Fall (Netflix): An ode to Westerns done in style!!
  • No Time To Die: Ahhh where will the Bond legacy go next
  • Candyman: Thank you Nia Dacosta for this beautiful piece of horror!!
  • Shang-Chi and the Legend of Ten Rings: 10/10
  • Spider-Man: No Way Home
  • Zola: A movie that offers A LOT of different perspectives regarding one weekend!
  • The Unforgivable (Netflix)
  • Army of the Dead/Army of Thieves (Netflix)
  • Gunpowder Milkshake (Netflix): More action films with women leads especially those of color is definitely needed!!
  • Raya and the Last Dragon
  • Judas and the Black Messiah
  • King Richard
  • Concrete Cowboy (Netflix): I’m a sucker for a good western and some Black history!
  • Cruella: Who says you can’t like villains!
  • Dune
  • The Tomorrow War (Prime Video)
  • Red Notice (Netflix): Ryan Reynolds…That’s all I gotta say!
  • Outside the Wire (Netflix)
  • Short Films
  • Us Again (Disney+)
  • Don’t Go Tellin’ Your Momma
  • Twenty Something (Disney+)
  • Bao (Disney+)
  • For the Birds (Disney+)
  • Loop (Disney+)
  • How to Raise a Black Boy
  • Documentary
  • My Name is Pauli Murray
  • Summer of Soul (Hulu)
  • Pride (Hulu)
  • This is Pop (Netflix)
  • Blood Brothers: Malcolm X & Muhammad Ali (Netflix)
  • Mary J. Blige’s My Life (Prime Video)
  • Television Shows
  • Insecure (HBO Max): That last episode… (chef’s kiss)….The end of an era…Sunday nights will never be the same… (le sigh) #DayOne
  • The Wonder Years (ABC): Nostalgia, Comedy and the Black Experience
  • The Underground (Prime Video): Powerful, Visual American History Lesson
  • Invincible (Prime Video)
  • Wheel of Time (Prime Video): Definitely up there with Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings
  • The White Lotus (HBO Max): I have never been so drawn into a show that made me laugh, cringe, drop my jaw, and so much more…Everything is not always what it seems…
  • Nine Perfect Strangers (Hulu): I do believe what happened actually took place in real life, which is pretty scary if it did…
  • Only Murders in the Building (Hulu)
  • Love Life (Season 2) (HBO Max): I LOVE #BLACKLOVE and ALL its many layers!
  • Queen Sugar (OWN Network): Another show that when it comes to a close, I will truly miss this show!! #DayOne
  • Arcane (Netflix): Definitely looking forward to the next season! Fun to watch!
  • The Falcon and Winter Soldier (Disney+): My fave of the Marvel series on Disney+ so far…They pulled out all kinds of surprises!!
  • What If…? (Disney+): Still missing Chadwick Boseman
  • Run the World (Starz): Love seeing Black female friendships and when cities become actors (I see you Harlem!)
  • Succession (HBO Max): All I can say is just watch it!!
  • Reservation Dogs (Hulu): Please more of this!!
  • Evil (Paramount+): Catholicism is a whole different beast (pun intended)
  • Blood and Water (Netflix): Had to represent SA!!
  • Cruel Summer (Hulu): Shout out to my sista-friend Lesley Bonner for this one!! Talk about being drawn in!! It’s all about the little details!
  • Soundtracks (Television and Film) (I did this instead to avoid having to narrow it down to one artist/group or album)
  • The Harder They Fall
  • Insecure (I owe a great deal to this soundtrack, I became aware and a fan of so many new artists because of each seasons soundtrack!!)
  • Judas and the Black Messiah
  • Coming 2 America
  • Cruella
  • BMF
  • Queen Sugar
  • Tom & Jerry (Now this one surprised me!! But trust me on this one!)
  • True Story (A Whole lot of Philly Soul)

*The listings are in no particular order.

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts..., On the Desk..., Resources

Dr. G’s ‘Top 21’ Books of 2021

Did I mention I love to read…Well I DO!! Ever since I was kid I always had a book to read. Even as I hit 40 this year, I made sure I had my share of reading done. Matter fact this year I even did a Reading Challenge (on Good Reads) where I had to read at one book a month. And as I type this post I managed to get in 15 books plus a few comic books and graphic novels. It felt good to turn the pages (old school reader) of each new book and then look up what my next read would be!!

With all that said, I figure I would keep up with my tradition from last year and compile my ‘Top 21’ books from this year, and as an extra bonus for me I even got to meet some of the authors!! Pretty cool!!

Nothing like sharing some of your faves!! As I always say, ‘sharing is caring.’

So in no particular order, here is my Top 21 List of Books for 2021!!

  1. Just As I Am ~Cicely Tyson
  2. Somebody’s Daughter ~Ashley C. Ford
  3. Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre ~Carole Boston Weatherford
  4. Until I Am Free: Fannie Lou Hamer’s Enduring Message to America ~Keisha N. Blain
  5. Luster ~Raven Leilani
  6. Black Leopard, Red Wolf: The Dark Star Trilogy ~Marlon James
  7. Digital Black Feminism ~Catherine Knight Steele
  8. Maya and the Robot ~Eve L. Ewing
  9. The Black Flamingo ~Dean Atta
  10. Fast Pitch ~Nic Stone
  11. Bamboozled by Jesus: How God Tricked Me into The Life of My Dreams ~Yvonne Orji
  12. The Day the Klan Came to Town ~Bill Campbell
  13. Black Boy Joy: 17 Stories Celebrating Black Boyhood ~Edited by Kwame Mbalia
  14. Chronicling Stankonia: The Rise of the Hip-Hop South ~Regina N. Bradley
  15. The Book of Unknown Americans ~Cristina Henriquez
  16. The 1619 Project ~Nikole Hannah-Jones
  17. The 1619 Project: Born on the Water ~Nikole Hannah-Jones & Renée Watson
  18. Stella’s Stellar Hair ~Yesenia Moises
  19. How the Word Is Passed A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America ~Clint Smith
  20. Libertie ~Kaitlyn Greenidge
  21. Raybearer ~Jordan Ifueko

Happy Reading!!

~Dr. G

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!, On The Radar

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

Last week of 2021, but that does not mean the trailers end here! Better yet just think of this week’s trailers as a foreshadow to what is to come in 2022!! So check them out below:

Season 4-Cobra Kai (Streaming on Netflix December 31st, 2021)

Death on the Nile (In theaters February 11th, 2022)

Inventing Anna (Streaming on Netflix February 11th, 2022)

Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty (Streaming on HBO Max March 2022)

Season 3-Atlanta (Streaming on FX March 24th, 2022)

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (In theaters May 6th, 2022)

Halo (Streaming on Paramount + in 2022)

Posted in On the Desk...

Dr. G’s Holiday Movie Favorites!!

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

Christmas cookies (CHECK), Egg Nog or Mulled Wine (CHECK & CHECK), Firestick plugged in (CHECK), and plenty of Blankets (CHECK)!! Just a few items needed as we prepare to dive into some Holiday movies!! I figured I would share a few of my holiday favorites with you to get you in the holiday mood!! Now some of these are classics and some are just simply for a good laugh, but nonetheless channeling the holiday season!! Check them out below:

  • National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989): This is one of my all-time favorite movies ever!! It never gets old!! And an extra bonus it takes place in my home state (Chicago, IL)!!
  • Four Christmases (2008)
  • The Best Man Holiday (2013): Nothing like hearing and seeing a rendition of New Edition perform during the Holidays!!
  • The Holiday (2006)
  • Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey (2020): A fantastical/STEM holiday adventure infused with some #BlackGirlMagic … works for me!!
  • The Preacher’s Wife (2002): What more could you ask for with a cast that includes the late Whitney Houston, Denzel Washington, the hilarious Jenifer Lewis, and Courtney B. Vance and the amazing music…chef’s kiss!!
  • A Christmas Story (1983): Classic Christmas Tell!!
  • Prancer (1989)
  • Frosty the Snowman (1969):Classic Holiday Canon!!
  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966): Classic Holiday Canon!!
  • The Night Before (2015): Nothing like searching for the ultimate holiday party!!
  • The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992): The perfect way to introduce your kids to the classic Christmas tale!
  • The Family Stone (2005)
  • Jingle All the Way (1996): Who doesn’t love a Holiday fight for Christmas toys?!!
  • The Nightmare before Christmas (1993)
  • Die Hard (1988): Yep this counts!!
  • Home Alone (1990): No ‘Wet Bandits’ for me!!
  • Elf (2003): Will Ferrell in elf suit…priceless!!
  • A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965): Classic Holiday Canon!!

Now I know there may be some flicks that didn’t make the list, that maybe you think should, but if that was the case this list would never end!!

In addition to curling up on the couch to watch your favorite holiday movies, I will also escape to the theaters (safely of course, masked and ready). So if you are anything like my family we always have a tradition of going to see a movie on Christmas Day, just another way to get our movie fix in!! And as that day quickly approaches we still gotta figure out what it will be, but trust me we are definitely looking forward to it!!

Now you are ready to rock and ‘Holiday’ roll!

So what’s your favorite Holiday movies??

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Posted in Monthly Book Recommendations

Dr. G’s December Book Recommendations

Happy Holidays Friends and Family!! Can you believe we are already in the last month of the year!! Well for this month’s recommendations I definitely incorporated some holiday cheer! As always I try to mix it up for you!!

And remember make sure you pre-order, add to your cart, support your local bookstores and remember sharing is caring!! Who says less is more, at least in this case :-)!! So without further ado check out this month’s recommendation below!!

  • I Got the Christmas Spirit ~Connie Schofield-Morrison
  • The People Remember ~Ibi Zoboi
  • The Nutcracker in Harlem ~T.E. McMorrow
  • Butter Honey Pig Bread ~Frances Ekwuyasi
  • Moon Witch, Spider King ~Marlon James
  • Wahala ~Nikki May

And remember you can always go back and check out the previous month’s recommendations in the “Resource” section of the website!!

Also make sure to tune in for my “Top 21 Books of 2021”, coming very soon!!

~Dr. G

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!, On The Radar

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

Just cause the 2021 is coming to a close does not mean the movies and tv shows stop, if anything we get more!! Got another dose of trailers for your viewing pleasure!! Enjoy and check them out below:

Season 2-The Righteous Gemstones (Streaming on HBO Max January 9th, 2022)

The House (Streaming on Netflix January 14th, 2022)

I Want You Back (Streaming on Prime Video February 11th, 2022)

Everything Everywhere All At Once (In theaters March 25th, 2022)

The Lost City (In theaters March 25th, 2022)

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

3…2…1…another week of trailers ready for you to push play!! Check them out below:

The Slow Hustle (Streaming on HBO Max December 7th)

Nicole Byer: BBW (Big Beautiful Weirdo) (Streaming on Netflix December 7th)

The Unforgivable (Streaming on Netflix December 10th)

Nightmare Alley (In theaters December 17th)

Reno 911! The Hunt For QAnon (Streaming on Paramount+ December 23rd)

The Outfit (In theaters February 25th, 2022)

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!, On The Radar

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

As we get ready too close out another year, I wanted to make sure I got you all ready for what is hitting your tv and film screens in 2022!! Mixed it up for you as always with a little television and some film! Check them out below:

Power of the Dog (Streaming on Netflix December 1st)

Mother/Android (Streaming on Hulu December 17th)

Women of the Movement-Limited Series (Premiering on ABC January 6th)

Ray Donovan: The Movie (Premiering on Showtime January 14th)

Ambulance (In theaters February 18th)

Dog (In theaters February 18th)

Bel-Air (Streaming on Peacock 2022)

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

Bringing you the heat with this week’s trailers!! Brought you a little something from Prime Video, HBO, Netflix, and OWN. Should get your December started off on the good foot!! Check them out below:

Harlem (Streaming on Prime Video December 3rd)

And Just Like That (Streaming on HBO Max December 9th)

Back to the Outback (Streaming on Netflix December 10th)

Season 6-The Expanse (Streaming on Prime Video December 10th)

The Kings of Napa (Streaming on OWN January 2022)

Posted in Monthly Book Recommendations

Dr. G’s November Book Recommendations

We are one month away from the end of the year, but the reading never stops!! This month I went heavy on the YA books and novels with a splash of the diaspora!! I had to make sure I included my young readers in this list!!

So remember to pre-order, add to your cart, visit your local bookstore, and grab a copy or two!! And without further ado check out the recommendations below:

And remember you can always go back and check out the previous month’s recommendations in the “Resource” section of the website!!

~Dr. G

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

It’s that time of the week…another Tuesday and another set of trailers!! As always I have a nice mix of cinematic and television goodies just for you!! Check them out below:

Season 3-Hanna (Streaming on Amazon Prime Video November 24th)

‘Twas the Fight Before Christmas (Streaming on Apple TV+ November 26th)

The Power of the Dog (Streaming on Netflix December 1st)

Being the Ricardos (In theaters December 10th and Amazon Prime Video December 21st)

Fortress (In theaters December 21st)

Downton Abbey: A New Era (In theaters March 18th, 2022)

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

The holiday season is upon us and the movies are right behind it! We are entering the season of cinema family gatherings whether at home or in the theaters. And of course I got you covered!

Check them out below:

Cowboy Bebop (Streaming on Netflix November 19th)

Sing 2 (In theaters December 22nd)

Scream (In theaters January 14th, 2022)

8-Bit Christmas (Streaming on HBO Max November 24th)

Swan Song (In theaters and Streaming on Apple TV+ December 14th)

Morbius (In theaters January 2022)

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts..., On the Desk...

Thank You Issa Rae!!

The new season of Insecure has started and we are 2 episodes!! Let me tell you as someone who has been watching the show since DAY ONE, Issa rae and the show never ceases to amaze me!! So much so that I had to write down a few notes in the form of a ‘thank you’ note post expressing my appreciation!! I remember actually hearing about the show in 2016 while vacationing at Martha’s Vineyard and attending the annual MVAAFF. If nothing else I had planned to watched the series off the strength of Issa Rae’s previous web series “Awkward Black Girl” and the fact that it was a series about young Black professionals. With little to no expectations, like many others we just dived in. In the words of R&B singer Vivian Green, we were always riding an “emotional rollercoaster” 30 mins at a time when it came to this show.

It is not often that you find a show that tells so many stories and is so relatable that you have to step back and say “damn that’s really close to my life” or “I totally know that feeling!” Every season has created an on-going dialogue, surrounding everything from entrepreneurship to family planning (birth and death) to complex relationships/dating to self-preservation to job security to simply just believing in one’s self, all topics that will surely continue linger in the atmosphere even after the last and final episode. For me, Insecure is the Living Single of its time! As a professional, awkward, funny, driven Black woman seeing the various experiences of Black womanhood play out on-screen via the vision of a Black woman always gave me a sense of hope and promise.

And so I have to thank you for showing the many complex layers of relationships and friendship and that they are not perfect nor should we strive for them to be. To be honest in each of the four main Black female characters (Issa, Molly, Kelli, and Tiffany) I found a piece of myself in each character. That’s what makes being a Black woman so great!! Life truly is a learning process. You provided us another outlet that permits us to stumble, fail, get back up, find joy, be angry, and persevere!!

Black women friendships as personified in HBO’s Insecure

Thank you for normalizing therapy, particularly for Black women…The familiarity of each session was so very refreshing….this is so needed and necessary. The way therapy is showcased on this show is a great example of how it can be utilized in fiction but translate into reality.

Molly in a therapy session on ‘Insecure’ Season 2-Episode 2 “Hella Questions”

The fashion and hair…So versatile..Daring…Forward-thinking…Inspiring…I definitely picked up a few things and added them to my closet.

How about all the cameos….Syd, Sterling K. Brown, Lil Rel Howery, Kyla Pratt, Luke James, Kofi Siriboe, Jidenna, Hayley Kiyoko, Dawn Richard, Wendy Raquel Robinson, and many more…

I will always look at couches, Best Buy shirts, and Coachella very differently and I’m good with that!

New and improved vocabulary…words/concepts/phrases like ‘zaddy’, ‘ho-tation’, ‘Go for it, go for it, go! Ho for it, ho for it, ho!’, ‘work in progress’, ‘thug yoda’, and ‘we got y’all’ will always have a special place in the Black community.

Thank you for the location…location…location!!

Oh and I cannot forget the amazing soundtracks, my music game continues to level up thanks to this show!!

Official ‘Insecure’ Playlist from Spotify

Watching this show this show for me personally allowed me to have those moments of thinking about how to evaluate my life and actions. Lots of growth and self-reflection!! I definitely increased my intake of daily affirmations and learned to truly be honest with myself and others. About five years ago, Issa Rae made a statement to NPR that definitely resonated then and even more so now, “We don’t get to just have a show about regular Black people being basic.” Who would have thought basic, regular, and awkwardness were just the things we needed in life.

Once again my Sunday nights will never be the same after Insecure comes to a final close. Insecure will join such shows as Lovecraft Country, Power, and The Wire, as premium channels shows that were well worth the extra purchasing cost.

So when it is all said and done…Issa you switched up the tv landscape around how we CAN center Black people and culture in a variety of ways….And I thank you Issa Rae for making this contribution to the pop culture landscape!!

Flyer from Insecure-Season 1
Flyer from Insecure-Season 2
Flyer from Insecure-Season 3
Flyer from Insecure-Season 4
Flyer from Insecure-Season 5

Just a few of my thoughts…

~Dr. G

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!, On The Radar

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

I know normally you get your alerts on Tuesday, but I delayed it one day to make sure I highlighted Election Day!! But have no fear the trailers are still here!! Check them out below:

Arcane (Streaming on Netflix November 6th)

The Wheel of Time (Streaming on Amazon Prime Video November 19th)

The Unforgivable (In theaters November 24th and Streaming on Netflix December 10th)

The Book of Boba Fett (Streaming on Disney+ December 29th)

Uncharted (In theaters February 18th, 2022)

Lightyear (In theaters June 17th, 2022)

Posted in On The Radar

Upcoming Event for Dr. G!!

Check out this upcoming event that Dr. G will be moderating on this Thursday!!

See the details below:

The Day the Klan Came to Town: A Comic Book Retelling of Community Resistance

November 4, 2021 from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM

(This will be a hybrid event. You can attend in-person or online.)

Description: Author Bill Campbell and artist Bizhan Khodabandeh discuss their work on the acclaimed new graphic novel, The Day the Klan Came to Town, a fictionalized retelling of a community’s resistance to a violent 1923 march of thousands of Ku Klux Klan members in Carnegie, Pa. Thi Bui, author of The Best We Could Do, describes the book as “A piece of American history in all its ugliness told as an astonishing coming together of misfits to stand up against a common threat. Bill brings an international scope to the history and a concise understanding of politics to the story. Bizhan’s art is dazzling. This is a book for our times.”

The event is free and open to all and will be held in person but will also be live streamed through Zoom. The in-person location will be James Branch Cabell Library, Room 303, 901 Park Ave., Richmond, Va. 23219. Parking is available for a fee in the West Broad StreetWest Main Street and West Cary Street parking decks.

Please register to attend in person or online. For questions or accommodations, please contact the VCU Libraries Events Office at applewhiteec@vcu.edu or (804) 357-7655.

To register, click here

About the book: The year is 1923. The Ku Klux Klan is at the height of its power in the U.S. as membership swells into the millions and they expand beyond their original southern borders. As they continue their campaigns of terror against African Americans, their targets now also include Catholics and Jews, southern and eastern Europeans, all in the name of “white supremacy.” Incorporating messages of moral decency, family values and temperance, the Klan has slapped on a thin veneer of respectability and become a “civic organization,” attracting new members, law enforcement and politicians to their particular brand of white, Anglo-Saxon and Protestant “Americanism.”

Pennsylvania enthusiastically joined that wave. That was when the Grand Dragon of Pennsylvania decided to display the Klan’s newfound power in a show of force. He chose a small town outside of Pittsburgh named after Andrew Carnegie, a small, unassuming borough full of Catholics and Jews, the perfect place to teach immigrants a “lesson.” Some thirty thousand members of the Klan gathered from as far as Kentucky for “Karnegie Day.” After initiating new members, they armed themselves with torches and guns to descend upon the town to show them exactly what Americanism was all about.

The Day the Klan Came to Town is a fictionalized retelling of the riot, focusing on a Sicilian immigrant, Primo Salerno. He is not a leader; he’s a man with a troubled past. He was pulled from the sulfur mines of Sicily as a teen to fight in the First World War. Afterward, he became the focus of a local fascist and was forced to emigrate to the United States. He doesn’t want to fight but feels that he may have no choice. The entire town needs him—and indeed everybody—to make a stand.

You can also purchase the book through the publisher PM Press!

Posted in Jaya's Pop Culture Minute-PCM

Jaya’s Pop Culture Minute (PCM)*

Today Jaya’s Pop Culture Minute takes us back to this summer with, “Why is The Suicide Squad (2021) Better Than Suicide Squad (2016)”. Check it out below:

The simple answer is that a change in directing, and writing can go a very long way. The first Suicide Squad (2016) movie directed by David Ayer, in my opinion, takes itself too seriously. So seriously, in fact that the movie falls flat, and the characters seem more of a shell than anything else, characters like Harley Quinn seemed tamed and felt like someone trying to imitate what they think her character is like, not to mention her relationship with the Joker throughout the movie. The movie, although about classic supervillains and mercenaries, falls short and does not feel like the usual comic book movies. The atmosphere of the whole movie is dark and gloomy and drags in most parts. The dialogue itself is questionable at best with weird deliveries from some of the actors, but you cannot really do anything when the writing is dull.

Whereas, The Suicide Squad (2021) directed and written by James Gunn is what you think of when you think of a classic comic book movie, from the bright colors and in-character writing for each character. In the 2021 movie, Harley Quinn is seen as an actual character and is written with depth instead of just a cute girl in a group of guys. She has character growth in the movie but subtly so that the comic book movie aspect is not lost in translation. Rick Flag is a great example too of the difference directing and writing can do to a character, in the 2016 movie Rick is seen as a hard military man who does not really care for his team and is written one-dimensionally. While in the James Gunn movie he is a relatable character with a real personality, his core personality from the first movie is shown sometimes but it is shown in a digestible way where we still get the kind of funny quips and jokes from him.

So why is the second Suicide Squad movie better than the first one? Directing and writing as well as character design really makes this movie much better than the first one. Characters in the movie new and old are given real personalities and motivations that were lost in the first one. Enjoyable dialogue and scenes also add to why the 2021 movie is much more enjoyable.

The Suicide Squad (2021)

*Jaya’s Pop Culture Minute (PCM) is all about giving people pop culture analysis and discussion in short posts. From Marvel comics, Anime, Movies, and Tv Shows, Jaya deliver’s her thoughts and ideas on what she would like to see more of, what writers can do to improve their outreach to different demographics and more! Jaya herself is a sophomore, (soon to be junior), in high school who loves talking about all things pop culture and she hopes you come back to read more.

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts...

Election Day!!

Today is Election Day!! A day that is very important for many different reasons. For me especially, it is important considering there was a time when my ancestors at one point were not even allowed to register let alone vote. And all is still not in the clear, when my voting rights are still constantly in jeopardy. But until that time, God willing never, I will still make my way to the polls whether in person or via absentee ballot, cause I know my vote matters and counts!!

So regardless of who you vote for, make sure you exercise your right to do so!!

As the late Shirley Chisholm once said, “The one thing you’ve got going: your one vote!”

~Dr. G

Posted in On the Desk..., On The Radar

Celebrating Jackie Ormes!!

Join WinC International (via their WinC Media Channel) and Hello Barkada on TODAY at 7 pm/ET as they celebrate cartoonist icon Jackie Ormes!!

“Cartoonists and history-makers Barbara Brandon-Croft (“Where I’m Coming From”), Bianca Xunise (“Six Chix”), and Steenz (“Heart of the City”) join Hello Barkada founder Christine Pasalo Norland to discuss the impact of the late cartoonist Jackie Ormes!”

Totally siked to see this event taking place!! As a huge fan of Jackie Ormes, there was no question that I needed to make sure I tune into this discussion!

This event is FREE and will be live-streamed!!

Here is an event you do not want to miss!!

You can RSVP for the event here!!

And if you want to get a head start on who Jackie Ormes check out the following site!

~Dr. G

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

Keeping it short and sweet so you all can get straight to the trailers!! Plus it’s the end of the month!! Just know I am pretty excited about this list especially the 2022 joints!!

Check them out below:

Colin in Black & White [Limited Series] (Streaming on Netflix October 29th)

Amina (Streaming on Netflix November 4th)

Season 3-Narcos: Mexico (Streaming on Netflix November 5th)

The Tender Bar (Streaming on Amazon Prime December 17th)

The Batman (In theaters March 4th, 2022)

The Flash (In theaters November 4th, 2022)

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!, On The Radar

#BlackGirlMagic in Effect-A New Superhero is coming to The CW!!

Well I am always for #BlackGirlMagic especially when it’s in the comic book genre, and The CW is giving us some with their latest series, Naomi!! Many fans and viewers know that The CW has a unique approach to its DC shows, and this latest series is adding to that catalog.

Television and Comic book version of DC Comics “Naomi” (Photo Credit: The CW)

As a fairly new character (only being introduced in 2019) Naomi McDuffie is making a transition from comics to television very quickly!! And just in case you are new to this character, or just want a little more info see some facts about Naomi and the upcoming series listed below:

  • The series is expected to re-tell Naomi’s origin story
  • Naomi’s origins include the life of an adopted high school teen who yearns to know her beginnings and while doing so discovers that she has some embedded superpowers
  • The comic book character was birthed in 2019 from writers Brian Bendis & David F. Walker and artist Jamal Campbell
  • She can morph into a superpower form and possesses such powers as flight, resistance to injury, and superhuman strength
  • Her adoptive parents have a unique back story as well
  • Naomi is joining an established crew of young, Black, and gifted comic book characters (Milestone MediaStatic Shock and Rocket; Marvel ComicsLunella Lafayette/Moon Girl, RiRi Williams/Ironheart, Miles Morales/Spiderman; Stranger ComicsNiobe)

You will have to tune in next year to learn more!! Actress Kaci Walfall (Army Wives) will play the role of the super powered teen. I’m really excited that we are seeing more leading youthful representation not just in comics and television, but pop culture as a whole!

Created by creative television and film genius Ava Duvernay and CW veteran Jill Blankenship, Naomi is set to premiere on The CW in 2022 and will take place within the Arrowverse.

Check out the teaser trailer below:

Talk about being hyped!!

I am definitely excited to see more Girl Power on the television screen and this looks like it is definitely fitting the bill!! 2022 can’t come fast enough!!

~Dr. G

Posted in On The Radar, Resources

Call For Papers-AAIHS 2022 Conference

**REPOST FROM AAIHS SITE**

The African American Intellectual History Society (AAIHS)’s

Seventh Annual Conference

Everyday Practices, Memory Making, and Local Spaces

March 11-12, 2022 

A Virtual Conference 
Host: University of Nevada, Las Vegas 
Group of Black Lives Matters protesters in front of Sir Winston Churchill Monument statue in London (Sandor Szmutko / Shutterstock.com)

The process of “memory making” is ongoing as activists throughout the African diaspora confront the past and challenge landscapes that pay homage to colonialism and Eurocentrism. Recent debates surrounding the teaching of Critical Race Theory in K-12 classrooms, The 1619 Project, and the position of Confederate monuments in the public square highlight these contemporary trends. The United States is facing a unique moment of national reckoning that scrutinizes how history is interpreted, commemorated, and displayed. 

In the era of social media, local issues can also have immediate global implications. When Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin murdered George Floyd in the Summer of 2020, protests emerged in cities and towns throughout the United States. But calls for justice and civil rights quickly spread across the globe, as communities throughout Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and the Americas condemned anti-Blackness, police brutality, and systemic racism in their own countries. Relatedly, as activists in the United States toppled Confederate monuments and statues of Christopher Columbus last year, people of African descent in Europe also challenged the colonial landscapes displayed in various European cities. In Bristol, for example, activists defaced and destroyed the statues of slave traders such as Edward Colston and in Belgium, activists toppled statues of brutal imperialists such as Leopold II. These national and global activist movements contested the aftermath of enslavement and colonialism in the everyday while also illustrating how memory shapes politics, identities, and communities in the past and present.  

In accordance with this contemporary moment, this year’s theme, “Everyday Practices, Memory Making, and Local Spaces” provides an opportunity for interdisciplinary scholarship that examines how history is told in local, national, and international contexts. Correspondingly, AAIHS has selected Las Vegas, Nevada, for its annual conference. The city’s African American residents are deeply tied to national, international, and local histories. As southern Nevada’s Black population grew through the Great Migration, civil rights activists fought against the city’s rampant inequality, culminating in the “Moulin Rouge Agreement” on March 26, 1960, that desegregated the Strip casinos. And as an international tourism hub, spaces throughout southern Nevada have been shaped and reshaped by transnational influences. 

As panelists consider their proposals, they might consider the following questions: How do “everyday practices” form conceptions of the past? How is memory “made” and “remade” in different eras of history? How can “local spaces” influence broader discussions of societal injustice and prompt calls for social change? What methods have people from past and present generations used in their “memory making” and why did they use those methods? In what way does gender, sexuality, race, and class complicate memory making in everyday locales? Ultimately, what are the stakes of challenging memorialized and deeply invested in spaces and stories in local, national, and international settings?

AAIHS welcomes individual proposals for abbreviated presentations (5-6 minutes) that consider the theme of “Everyday Practices, Memory Making, and Local Spaces” from a variety of perspectives. Each proposal will be considered for inclusion in one of the featured conference sessions, which will be scheduled remotely on Friday, March 11 or Saturday, March 12, 2022. AAIHS invites scholars at various ranks and affiliations (from graduate students to senior faculty and independent scholars) to submit proposals for consideration. Each proposal should include a title and approximately 500 words that clearly explains the paper’s argument; methods and methodologies; interventions; and engagement with the conference theme. Submissions should also include a short CV (1-3 pages in length), highlighting previous publications and presentations, if applicable. Proposals will be accepted on the AAIHS website between September 15, 2021 and November 15, 2021. 

To Submit a Conference Proposal, click here!!

Conference Planning Committee:

  • Chair: Tyler D. ParryUniversity of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • Hilary N. GreenUniversity of Alabama
  • Tiffany N. FlorvilUniversity of New Mexico 
  • Candace CunninghamFlorida Atlantic University 
  • Adam McNeilRutgers University, New Brunswick

*Please email conference@aaihs.org to reach the conference committee.

Posted in Monthly Book Recommendations, Resources

Dr. G’s October Book Recommendations

Photo by Ronu00ea Ferreira on Pexels.com

FREEDOM…LIBERATION…BLACK RESISTANCE…BIRTH… It is interesting that these words came to mind as I was compiling this month’s list, because I honestly did not have any particular intention. This list was just meant to be, I guess you could say… There’s a lot of amazing literary energy that is coming from each of these texts whether it celebrating an iconic freedom fighter, showcasing the crime fiction genre, chronicling Black resistance via picture and verse.

Let’s just say this we got another set of heavy hitters this month, a few of them I have been anxiously (and patiently) waiting to be released!!

Remember to make sure you pre-order, add to your cart, or run to your local bookstore and grab a copy or two!! So with that said check out this month’s book recommendations below:

And remember you can always go back and check out the previous month’s recommendations in the “Resource” section of the website!!

~Dr. G

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts..., Feature Spotlight, On the Desk...

Just in case you missed it!!-“The Portrayal of Women in Media & Entertainment”

Earlier this month I had the opportunity to sit on an AMAZING panel with a great group of women to discuss women in media and entertainment as part of the Meliora 2021 celebration at the University of Rochester!!

So I wanted to make sure I shared the video with you just in case you may have missed the LIVE presentation, or you just want to re-cap!!

Check it out below:

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

I’m coming in hot for you all this week!! As always I’m trying to drop a few goodies in your inbox!! Check them out below:

My Name (Streaming on Netflix October 15th)

Needle in a Timestack (In theaters October 15th)

The Grand Duke of Corsica (In theaters October 15th)

Army of Thieves (Streaming on Netflix October 29th)

Season 4-Star Trek: Discovery (Streaming on Paramount+ November 18th)

Nightmare Alley (In theaters December 17th)

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

3…2…1…October We Are Here!! Got a nice line-up for you with quite a few goodies!! Don’t believe me, check them out below:

The Harder They Fall (Streaming on Netflix on November 3rd)

Spencer (In theaters November 5th, 2021)

Belfast (In theaters November 12th, 2021)

Welcome to Earth (Streaming on Disney+ December 2021)

Janet (Streaming on Lifetime January 2022)

Season 4-Ozark (Streaming on Netflix 2022)

Posted in Feature Spotlight, On The Radar

Upcoming Event for Dr. G!!

Glad to be able to participate in another event where I get to talk about a few of my favorite discussion topics: race, gender, media, and entertainment!!

On this coming Friday October 1st (12-1 pm/ET), I will be taking part in the Distinguished Panel Discussion: The Portrayal of Women in Media and Entertainment presented by the University of Rochester-Women’s Network!! Check out the info below:

Over the last few decades, the portrayal of women in film, television, and magazines has evolved, and in some cases, improved to include a stronger presence and influence of women both in front of the camera and behind the scenes. Join our esteemed panelists virtually for a conversation exploring the issues around the media’s portrayal of women and girls—from effects on body image and self-identity—to the ways in which media both limits and empowers women and girls in today’s society.

This virtual panel includes myself as well as an awesome group of women: Kate Hearst (Film Historian, Critic, and Filmmaker), Roberta Myers (longest-serving Editor-in-Chief and Vice President of Brand Content of the US edition of the fashion media brand, ELLE), KaeLyn Rich (Vice President of Organizational Advancement at UltraViolet) and Norma Holland-Moderator) (Director of Public Relations and Engagement for the Office of Equity and Inclusion at the University of Rochester)!!

To register to attend click here!! See you all Friday!!

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

As we close out another month and enter a new season, I look forward to what it is set to hit our tv screens and theaters. A nice mix of this and that for you!! Check them out below:

Britney vs. Spears (Streaming on Netflix September 28th)

Passing (Streaming on Netflix November 10th)

Nightmare Alley (In theaters December 17th)

The Tragedy of Macbeth (In theaters December 25th and Streaming on Apple TV+ January 14th, 2022)

Marvel Studios’ She-Hulk (Streaming on Disney+ in 2022)

Posted in Monthly Book Recommendations, Resources

Hispanic Heritage Month-Dr. G’s Bonus Book Recommendations

“We celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month to recognize the achievements and contributions of Hispanic American champions who have inspired others to achieve success.” ~National Hispanic Heritage Month/Library of Congress site

In honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15th-October 15th), I wanted to offer a bonus list of book recommendations particularly for youth!! Gotta make sure the kids get their list too!! You know Dr. G always has a special place for the youth!!

A phrase that always comes to mind and that will be forever ingrained is the notion that #RepresentationMatters!! Regardless of it is popular culture, school curriculums, hiring practices, and especially the materials that read, everyone should feel as though they can and are represented. As I have noted early on, reading has always been a powerful tool for change and great way to find peace and space/place to belong.

It is so necessary that Black and Brown children/youth are able to visually see their experiences drawn and written. Knowing that they can see themselves lets them know they have value within this world. What better way to do that than through a book!! Many of these stories, as well as others, pay tribute to the author’s cultural background, tell familial and community stories and also play a role in de-stigmatizing existing stereotypes and tropes. Additionally, this visual work can inspire, educate, and motivate the next generation!!

So here is a sample of great reads highlighting Afro/Hispanic/Latinx children to add to your literary collection/bookshelves:

Also, for more information about National Hispanic Heritage Month check out the following links:



~Dr. G

Posted in Monthly Book Recommendations, Resources

Dr. G’s September Book Recommendations

Photo by Chevanon Photography on Pexels.com

A new month…A new season…A new list of recommendations!!

As you prepare to get cozy with your comfy sweaters, hot apple cider, pumpkin spice latte, or my new fave cinnamon crunch latte make sure you get your next piece of reading material. I know I am looking forward to my next book so I can chill out on my balcony and take in that Fall breeze!!

And with that said check out this month’s recommendations below!! Add them to your cart, pre-order, and/or visit your local bookstore to get your copies!!

Remember you can always go back and check out the previous month’s recommendations in the “Resource” section of the website!!

Till next month!!

~Dr. G

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

Happy Tuesday!! You ready for some new trailers and to start scheduling your tv and film plans?? Check out these new ones blow:

Halloween Kills (In theaters October 15th)

The Wheel of Time (Streaming November 19th on Amazon Prime Video)

Marvel Studios’ Hawkeye (Streaming November 24th on Disney+)

Don’t Look Up (In select theaters December 10th and Streaming on Netflix December 24th)

Moonfall (In theaters February 4th, 2022)

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts..., Feature Spotlight, On The Radar

Inside Shang-Chi’s evolution from forgotten comic book character to big-screen superhero*

~Scottie Andrew, CNN Entertainment

Shang-Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings First Reactions

So a couple a weeks ago I had the opportunity to offer a few of my thoughts about Asian representation in comic books and its relationship with the latest Marvel film, Shang-Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings for CNN Entertainment!! To view the complete article see here.

Check out some of the snippets below:

Shang-Chi’s early issues relied on some problematic stereotypes

Every iteration of Shang-Chi has a similar throughline: He’s always a spectacular martial artist, always playing tug-of-war with his former life as a fighter and always, always tormented by daddy issues. That blueprint was created by Englehart and Jim Starlin, the two-man team who brought the character to life (Englehart, perhaps best known for his dark, noir take on Batman, has also created characters like Star-Lord of “Guardians of the Galaxy,” and Starlin is responsible for MCU icons like its biggest villain, Thanos.)

In the early 1970s, Englehart and Starlin approached Detective Comics (DC) with an idea: a comic book take on the David Carradine series “Kung Fu.” (The series has been criticized for its use of “yellowface,” or casting White actors as Asian characters. Carradine is White but starred as a part-Chinese martial artist.)Starlin, an artist, loved the martial arts element of the story, while writer Englehart said he was interested in delving into Taoism and other philosophies to flesh out his protagonist. The two thought they’d found a match with “Kung Fu” — but DC thought the “kung fu craze was going to disappear,” Starlin said, and passed on the idea.

So the pair took it next to Marvel, whose executives agreed only after insisting that the pair inject some pre-existing intellectual property into their comic, both men told CNN.

In this case, the company had the rights to the character Fu Manchu, a racist caricature of a Chinese man created by British author Sax Rohmer in the early 20th century. The villain was then “grafted onto the series” as Shang-Chi’s father, Starlin told CNN in an August interview. (Racist depictions of Asian characters had appeared in comics before this, like the egg-shaped villain “Egg Fu” in a 1965 Wonder Woman issue and the 1940 character “Ebony White” in the early comic, “The Spirit,” said Grace Gipson, an assistant professor at Virginia Commonwealth University who studies race and gender within comics.)

Gipson, a pop culture scholar who studies race and gender within comics, said hiring writers of color like Yang to helm series about characters of color is an improvement, but it “is really not a hard task.” She said while comics creators have made great strides in deconstructing norms of who a comic book reader is and what storylines they want to see, the hiring of creators of color needs to happen consistently.”It’s about making sure the voices of those being represented always have a seat at the table as well as a microphone to speak,” she told CNN.

Still, she said, as a fan of comics herself, she’s enjoyed seeing more representative stories being told in mainstream comics. 

*Repost from CNN

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts...

Dr. G’s Upcoming Events…

In the great words of creator and music producer Timbaland, “It’s been a long time, we shouldn’t of left you…”

Been off the grid for a little bit, finding balance with school, work, life and navigating everything in-between. The Fall season is upon us and exciting times are ahead. And I wanted to make sure I shared with you all some upcoming events that I will be taking part in, check them out below:

  • September 13th: “It’s the Microaggressions For Me: Let’s Talk Pop Culture, Inclusion, Unmasking Privilege, Navigating Inequities, and Taking Action”, Having Tough Conversations Series, Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT

A conversation about confronting privilege, addressing microaggressions, equity, inclusiveness, and what it really means to be an ally through the lens of popular culture. 

  • September 15th (2pm/ET): Black Metropolis Research Consortium (BMRC) Summer Fellows Presentation Series-“Telling HER-story and Continuing a Legacy: Chicago’s Black Girl Magic in Comics” [To attend send an email with “Fellows” in the subject line to bmrcrsvp@lib.uchicago.edu ]

A presentation recounting my summer research fellowship experience on the legacy of Black women in comics in Chicago, IL.

  • September 22nd (7:15pm/ET): Making Our Stories Visible- Humanizing the Black Experience Through Television, Freedom School 3.0 Lecture Series (Department of African American Studies at Georgia State University & Auburn Avenue Research Library), [Register Here]

2019 and 2020 served as a period filled with sadness and pain, protest, laughter and excitement, creativity, and truth-telling particularly from the Black perspective. During this time, several new series entered the television landscape, which have contributed to ensuring that various Black voices are more visible and not minimized or forgotten. More specifically, television series such as HBO’s A Black Lady Sketch Show and Lovecraft Country and Starz’s P-Valley are effectively providing spaces to humanize the Black experience while engaging with the past, present, and future. Through this talk I will specifically engage with the abovementioned television series and how they each center Black voices, while serving as visual outlets of re-telling, re-sharing and remembering Black stories and experiences. 

To get additional information and keep up with what’s going on in Dr. G’s world make sure to check out my Events page!!

Happy Sunday!!

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Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

New Month!! New Week!! And of course New Trailers!! Go some good stuff for you all this week especially as it relates to Fall TV returning!! Check them out below:

The Wonder Years (Season Premiere September 22nd [Wednesdays] on ABC)

Season 3-Doom Patrol (Streaming on HBO Max September 23rd)

Queens (Season Premiere October 19th [Tuesdays] on ABC )

Marvel Studios’ Eternals (In theaters November 5th)

Red Notice (Streaming on Netflix November 12th)

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

Another dose of television and movies to add to the calendar!! Got some good ones for you!!

Check them out below!!

Impeachment: American Crime Story (Premieres on FX September 7th)

Season Premiere-Y: The Last Man (Streaming on FX/Hulu September 13th)

Final Season-Dear White People, Vol. 4 (Streaming on Netflix September 22nd)

A Journal for Jordan (In theaters December 25th)

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts...

Year 2!! The Journey Continues….New Semester, New Beginnings…

Well today is the day!! Year 2 as an Assistant Professor in African American Studies at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU)!!

Last year was one definitely to remember…I had just moved to Richmond in the middle of a pandemic, VCU had pretty much asked professors and instructors to change their formats for teaching, and my apartment became not a just a place of residence but also a work place. This year, while there is still a pandemic, people are getting vaccinated, students are returning to campus, and majority of the classes are in-person (with mask requirements). The in-person part is really exciting to me because I thrive off being able to see my students live and in living color, it just feeds the soul!!

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So this semester, my teaching schedule has one new addition! I have the privilege of teaching the Capstone Seminar course for Africana Studies students and I will also teach the Theories and Foundations in Africana Studies course for the second year! The Capstone Seminar course is definitely going to be a new venture for me as I will be guiding students through a semester long research project. It’s more than just teaching but also serving as a guide for this major undertaking. I have always wanted the opportunity to serve as mentor and I feel like this will be great preparation. In addition to the teaching I have also been tasked with serving as the advisor for the “Black Excellence at VCU” organization for which I am pretty siked! All in all, I am very much looking forward to this Fall semester!!

Now as this new semester begins, I will be honest there are still butterflies in the stomach and a little nervousness, but it is to be expected. I strive to always give 110% to my work, my students, and myself so my daily prayer is that I find that balance with all three and just do my part in being the best person, scholar, and professor that I can be. My one main goal that I always have every semester is that my students leave my classes with at least one thing that they did not know prior to the course. It may seem simple and minimal, but major for me. That one new thing, idea, thought that a student leaves with can be a life-changer and to know that I may play a role in that is a huge accomplishment!

AUGUST 24th, 2021 the journey continues!!

And to all those who are starting today or have already started WELCOME BACK!! As the summer winds down and my favorite month comes to a close (SMILE), it is time to get back into the routine! Time to get those creative juices flowing again…Time to inspire, encourage, and motivate (teachers and students)…Time to make some new memories!!

So let’s blaze some trails and seek new horizons!!

Alright that’s enough for the first day, but make sure you stay tuned periodically for updates and check-ins, because trust me I GUARANTEE there will be some memorable moments shared!!

~Dr. G

Posted in A Professor's Thoughts...

Happy Birthday to Me!! Reflecting on 40!!

Another year around the sun, for the 40th time!! Wow time truly does fly when you are having fun!! I have been looking forward to this birthday, and here it is!! Today is a big deal, because (in the age of COVID-19) many have not had the privilege to turn 40 let alone have another birthday!! I get the opportunity to breathe life, run through the ocean, hug my mama, mentor a student, and be a better person!!

Leading up to today I had many thoughts of fear, excitement, joy, curiosity, amazement,… In many ways turning 40 actually feels easier than turning 30. Turning thirty was strange, it was emotional, it was supposed to be exciting, and it was another year of life (that I am thankful for)!! This birthday is one where I am not asking for much, just to be on someone’s beach reading a good summer book. Thankfully I get to do this twice, one on my actual Birthday and again in a few months. Reflecting on my last years of 30s, I realized how much I really enjoy the simple things in life. Don’t get me wrong I like the pomp and circumstance, but I can take it in moderation (lol). The small wins, the little joys that really does work for me.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

40 is one of those milestone birthdays where you either feel like you are getting old or you are re-evaluating life, and it definitely is the latter for me. So much has happened all before this birthday…I lived on both coasts of the U.S., traveled extensively throughout the world, bought a house, got my PhD, in a career that I love, watched my mom retire after 30+ years of work, move to a city that I love, and so much more!! When I think back on all those memories I have truly been blessed and continue to see those blessings!! Going into 40, I felt like I had to check off all these boxes, and grant it I did, but as the weeks and days got closer to August 16th I began to have this sense of clarity and ask myself a few questions. Are you happy Grace? What do you want to achieve that you have not? Is there room for flexibility? What have you let go? And are you putting in the work to make sure you are healthy and happy? These are questions that get answered, but sometimes are asked again, and I’m good with that. Talk about maturing!!

So what’s next…In this new year, new chapter, new book I am taking some sage advice that I got from a good friend of mine…be intentional in not just one aspect of life but in ALL parts!! I have learned that I put 100% (sometimes even more) in my professional work, but when it comes to my personal I will short change myself, and that is not fair. If I can give my all into my work, I should be able to do the same and more for my personal aspects of life. Sometimes you need those reminders, because I know I deserve the best so why not give and treat myself to the best!

On last week I posted a joke about how I was almost 40 but still felt like I’m 20, until I hang out with actual 20 year olds and then I realize, nope Grace you are not a spring chicken lol! But guess what I am totally fine with this realization. These days I treasure taking a nap, I listen to my body when it says it’s getting late time to turn in, I value sitting in my silence and clearing my thoughts, the simple things in life!

So as I walk, better yet stroll into this new year I continue to embrace this adage that my grandma always told me, “One Day at a Time!”

I am very much looking forward to what this year has in store!!

#Hello40 and Welcome to the Party!! Let’s have some fun!!

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Posted in Monthly Book Recommendations, Resources

Dr. G’s-July Book Recommendations

This month we are reflecting and celebrating Black girl and woman experiences!! We got a nice mix of novels, memoirs, and Black literature to keep you engaged and entertained!

Check out this month’s selections and pre-order and/or head on over to your nearest bookstore!!

  • Luster A Novel ~Raven Leilani
  • Carefree Black Girls: A Celebration of Black Women in Pop Culture ~Zeba Blay
  • On Girlhood: 15 Stories from the Well-Read Black Girl Library ~Glory Edim
  • Leaving Breezy Street: A Memoir ~Brenda Myers-Powell w/April Reynolds
  • The Poison Heart ~Kalynn Bayron

Remember you can always go back and check out the previous month’s recommendations in the “Resource” section of the website!!

Till next month!!

~Dr. G

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!, On The Radar

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

Starting you out with one of my faves on Netflix, a little drama, a splash of an action thriller, and closing you out with a Marvel treat! Sounds good to me!! Check them out below:

Season 2-Raising Dion (Streaming on Netflix February 1)

Limited Series-Inventing Anna (Streaming on Netflix February 11)

Severance (Streaming on Apple TV+ February 18)

Gasoline Alley (In theaters February 25)

Moon Knight (Streaming on Disney+ March 30)

Posted in New Trailer Alerts!!

Weekly Trailer Alerts!!

Another week and another set of trailers waiting just for you!! Got a nice mix of returning and relaunched series, new films, and even a Pixar movie!! So dive right in and check them out below:

Definition Please (Streaming on Netflix January 21st)

The Worst Person in the World (In theaters February 4th)

Season 2-Sweet Magnolia (Streaming on Netflix February 4th)

Power Book IV: Force (Streaming on STARZ February 6th)

The Proud Family: Louder and Prouder (Streaming on Disney+ February 23rd)

Turning Red (In theaters March 4th)

Posted in Feature Spotlight, On The Radar

Happy Founders to the Dynamic Women of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.!!

22 Founders of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. on the campus of Howard University (Washington, DC)

109 Years Ago today twenty-two college-educated Black women on the campus of Howard University set out to change the world through scholarship, sisterhood, and service!! These Black women were bold, intelligent, innovative, creative, and just simply AMAZING!! I mean one of their first acts of public service was participating in the Women’s Suffrage March in 1913, talk about a proud moment!!

As one of the largest sororities founded in the United States, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. continues to blaze the trail sparked and lit by our 22 founders. As an organization we have made our mark in everything from education, politics, the military, social activism, women’s and civil rights, international programming, economic development & job training, housing equity, HIV/AIDS awareness, and SO MUCH MORE!!

I had the privilege and honor of becoming a proud member of this organization almost 19 years ago on the campus of Clark Atlanta University (Shout out to my Pearl Bearing Sigma Chapter Sorors)!! One of the best decisions I ever made!! With each passing year Founders Day becomes more and more special, and reminds me that through my personal and professional life I am making a change!

With a membership of more than 350,000 and over 1,000+ collegiate and alumnae chapters located in the United States, Canada, Japan (Tokyo and Okinawa), Germany, the Virgin Islands, Bermuda, the Bahamas, Jamaica and the Republic of Korea, lets just say Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. is all about making a global impact!!

So to ALL my Sorors of DST near and far… Happy 109th!!

*To learn more about my wonderful organization check out the following link here!!

Posted in Feature Spotlight, On The Radar

Exciting Event Alert!! 2022 Black Comic Book Festival!!

Almost let this one slip pass me, but wanted to make sure I shared this exciting event happening this week!! The 10th Annual Black Comic Book Festival starts on this Thursday January 13th and its VIRTUAL!!

Artwork by Micheline Hess

The 2022 Black Comic Book Festival marks a decade of bringing together animators, Blerds, bloggers, cosplay lovers, fans, families, illustrators, independent publishers, and writers to celebrate Black comic books and graphic novels and provides a platform to get the works directly to readers. This annual event features panel discussions, workshops, cosplay showcases, and highlights the work of creators from across the country.

And guess what all the events are Free.99!! Gotta love that!!

Check out the schedule of events here:

Thursday, January 13

Lifting as We Climb: A Black Comic Book Festival Story | 12 PM: Black Comic Book Festival cofounders: John Jennings, Jonathan Gayles, Deirdre Hollman. Moderated by Kadiatou Tubman (Schomburg Education).

Graphic History: Telling Our Histories through Comics and the Archives | 2 PM: Guests: Dr. Rebecca Hall (Wake: The Hidden History of Women-Led Slave Revolts; Scholars-in-Residence program) and David Walker (The Black Panther Party: A Graphic Novel History). Moderated by Bridgett Pride, Reference Librarian, Schomburg Center.

S.T.E.M in Comics – Bridging the Gap of Current and Future Technologies in Art and Comics | 4 PM: Guests: Newton Lilavois (Motor City Comic Con), Naseed Gifted (PBS Media, LLC), Dedren Snead (SUBSUME), Ryan Benjamin (DC Comics/Sony), and Emeka Chiedu. Moderated by TJ Sterling (Rae Comics).

Friday, January 14

Afrofuturism: The Past, Present, and Beyond | 12 PM: Guests: John Jennings (Black Comic Book Festival cofounder), Tim Fielder (Infinitum: An Afrofuturist Tale, DieselFunk Studios), Ytasha Womack (Afrofuturism: The World of Black Sci Fi & Fantasy Culture), Reynaldo Anderson (Afrofuturism 2.0: The Rise of Astro-Blackness). Moderated by Julian Chambliss (Cofounder of Consortium for Critical Diversity in a Digital Age Research).

Black in Anime: Creators Coloring Outside the Lines | 2 PM: Guests: Arthell Isom (dartshtajio anime studio), Johnny O’Bryant (Noir Caesar), Shanice Penn (Freelance anime illustrator), Sozo Maika (Digital illustrator). Moderated by TJ Sterling (Rae Comics).

The Future of Black Comics Inside and Outside of the Academy | 4PM: Guests: Qiana Whitted, Rebecca Wanzo, and JoAnna Davis-McElligatt. Moderated by Dr. Jonathan Gray.

Saturday, January 15

How to Draw Black Superheroes & Comics | 11 AM: Guest: Tim Fielder (Infinitum: An Afrofuturist Tale, DieselFunk Studios)

Creating Powerful Women in Comics | 1 PM: Guests: Robyn Smith, Jamila Rowser, Shawnelle Gibbs, Shawnee Gibbs

The Comic Book Spectrum: Curating Safe and Brave Spaces | 3 PM: Guests: Cindy Cortez (Sonic Boombox), Robyn Warren (Geek Girl Strong), Clairesa Clay (Blerd City Comic Con), and Chauna C. Lawson (HBCU Con). Moderated by Regine Sawyer (Lockett Down Productions).

Comic Books & Big Screens: How Comic Creators Are Making Their Way Through Film and TV | 5 PM: Guests: Prentice Penny (Insecure), David Crownson (Harriet Tubman: Demon Slayer), Sebastian Jones (Stranger Comics), and URAEUS (Museum of UnCut Funk). Moderated by TJ Sterling (Rae Comics).

For more information regarding registrations, the panels, workshops, and cosplay show click here!!

Also for those that are in the Harlem, NY area you may want to also check out the new exhibition,  Boundless: 10 Years of Seeding Black Comic Futures, which will be on display at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture beginning January 14th!!

Boundless: 10 Years of Seeding Black Comic Futures, will document the festival’s evolution through photographs, memorabilia, creator highlights, comic book reading stations, and clips from past festival programs. The Schomburg Center’s collection of comic books and graphic novels dating back to the golden age of comic books will be deployed to illuminate the long history of Black comics and sequential art creators, and the ongoing motivations to render humor, struggle, irony, and futurism steeped in a Black aesthetic. 

Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture-NYPL (Harlem, NY)