Irving just graduated and is wallowing in six figures worth of loan debt. To make ends meet, he bikes seven miles to his job at a local health food store in Venice Beach (he has a car but can’t afford to fix the engine). It’s a far cry from what he imagined he’d be doing with his degree, but hey, bills have to be paid, right?
A Whole New Irving—a new web series starring newcomer Chase Anthony and created by LA-based producer and director Terry Dawson—chronicles the all too familiar post-grad struggle from the perspective of a young and cynical Black man. The show also illustrates Irving’s spiritual journey as he learns how to ask for help, something society hasn’t necessarily allowed Black men to do.
“This is pretty much my directorial debut as far as scripted material goes,” Dawson says in an interview posted to the series’ YouTube channel. “A young Black man on a spiritual journey seemed like a very cool thing.”
“Irving was crafted to be a portrait of a young black dude we haven’t seen before,” he further explains in a press release. “He’s not a rapper, baller, or a thug, but a college educated millennial ‘average joe.’ His ‘normalcy’ is what makes him so relatable and realistic, similarly to Issa Rae’s Awkward Black Girl.”
Indeed, Rae captured the hearts of Black and brown folks with her nuanced and unfiltered portrayal of navigating the world while Black. Smart, funny, and armed with a charismatic cast, A Whole New Irving is on track to become the next big thing for fans of Insecure and Atlanta.
The series premiered on June 16 and has since released four episodes. The team is currently raising money to fund production for the last six episodes of the season.
You can watch the first episode below, and if you’re in the Los Angeles area, catch a full screening at Indie Night Film Festival on November 18. Details here.