Make us your home page

The Feed

What you're talking about today

My second NPR commentary: How TV's interracial couples don't quite feel real enough yet



parenthood.jpgThere was the time when my wife was basically accosted by an older woman at the grocery store who refused to believe she could be mother to a son colored differently than her.

Years before, there was the time when certain members of her family seemed to avoid the room I was sitting in at a gathering. And there was the journalist -- a person of color -- who suggested on an Internet message board I couldn't possibly love my wife.

When you're a black man married to a white woman, society's odd ideas about interracial relationships come out in strange ways. It's not often top of mind; but the world has a way of reminding you sometimes how romance across racial lines doesn't sit well with some people on both sides of that equation.

sofia-vergara-modern-family.jpgAnd that's the thing I see missing most often in modern portrayals of interracial relationships on network TV. I've written before in this space about how there's been a small, recent rise in the shows featuring these connections -- from NBC's Parenthood and Fox's Traffic Light to ABC's Mr. Sunshine and the towering comedy Modern Family. But few shows seem willing to spend much time talking about race, ethnic or cultural differences.

So I decided to build my second commentary for NPR around that idea.

Look below to hear the actual commentary, which airs at 5:40, 7:40 and 9:40  this morning. At a time when one in seven new marriages crosses race or ethnic lines, I think it's time network's TV's depiction of us caught up to reality. 

Thanks to a great producer and editor, I'm having lots of fun exploring a new medium. Hope you enjoy hearing these pieces as much as I have enjoyed creating them.

And if you've got ideas for what I should be tackling next, I'm all, um, ears.

[Last modified: Friday, March 4, 2011 7:46am]


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours