In recent shows, brown to dark-skinned female characters are placed into certain roles. Often as the “tough” character, the one who protects the main character or teacher them something. Or maybe she’s just the sassy Black woman. They are often not seen as feminine or soft. To the point where just them existing to some is them showing masculine energy. And if they are tall there’s almost no chance of them being considered feminine, regardless of behavior. They are also often made to be undesirable regardless of whether they are seen as feminine or masculine. Dark-skinned women are OFTEN not seen as feminine or desirable and so as Black people who make media, who better than us to change this.
I don’t want just SOFT dark-skinned female characters, no, we have to go deeper. Deeper! I want them to be marshmallows. Soft dark-skinned women who don’t have to lift a finger. Who don’t fight battles and aren’t the strong character in a story. Who are babied, cry easily, and are comforted constantly. I want them to have husbands who don’t want to or let them lift a finger. Who make it their job, to ensure their wife is happy. I want strong personalities without having to be the “STRONG Black woman. I want a character who twists her leg, cries and doesn’t stop crying until she’s comforted and feels better about it. “And still has to be carried back home, just in case, because what if she hurts it again. Who dressily cutely, and knows her worth. To be fair she could be single. If so she is I wanted by every guy in a 1,000-mile radius wanting her and all the women around wanting to be her friend. I want her hand kissed, I want men falling over themselves. I want her to be the biggest baby, and I want a story, that starts with her being like that and ending that way. She doesn’t need a lesson, she needs to keep on being soft. She is on an ebony pedestal that we aren’t going to take her off of. With her getting whatever she wants. She must be unapologetically girly. I want her to find a place where she can continue on that way or find a man that will continue spoiling her.
What does she bring to the table?
Marshmallow is only one part of her personality. We could make her a genius or dumb. The daughter of a king or the daughter of a poor farmer.Whatever we want. Or maybe she has nothing to bring but JOY. How about that. Let’s see Black fantasy go:
Our marshmallow character is poor, works as a maid. She isn’t good at it at all, she’s too clumsy, but the owner can’t fire her because she’s angelic. She meets a cruel sad king. Her softness breaks down his cold heart. Making him feel a warmth that he’s never known. Just by watching how selfless and caring she is, she inspires him to be better. My soft characters are not “magical negreos”(it’s a trope that I hate), and as such can’t do any work to make other characters better. Those tropes are tired, but I think inspiring is ok. Seeing how much better received he is as a king after showing empathy. He realizes he needs her, and they get married, and she becomes queen. With her having nothing to her name but clumsiness, tears, and a happy disposition.
And that’s enough. Everything doesn’t have to be that deep.
If we are doing realism, here’s how I would do it. In a modern show, I would have her be the main character of a romance. I would have a Black guy meet her and be utterly blown away. He’s not used to a Black woman like her, but he’s intrigued. She likes horseback riding and loves the renaissance festival and cottage core. And he doesn’t know how to do it but likes her. But he’s worried he’s not sure if he’s up to her standard. Hijinks ensue(I can’t give you everything, use your imagination).