L ena Waithe is having an amazing year thus far, from the premiere of her Showtime series The Chi, to the show getting picked up for a second season, to winning an Emmy. What’s making 2018 even better for her? Another show.
TBS placed a pilot order for her new show called Twenties, which is a comedy that centers lesbians. The single-camera project was created, written, and executive produced by Waithe and follows a “queer Black girl” named Hattie and her two straight best friends, Marie and Nia, who “spend most of their days talking shit and chasing their dreams.”
“I wrote Twenties back in 2009,” Waithe said in an announcement. “I always wanted to tell a story where a queer Black woman was the protagonist and I’m so grateful to TBS for giving me a platform to tell this story. Queer Black characters have been the sidekick for long enough. It’s time for us to finally take the lead.”
According to GLAAD’s latest “Where We Are on TV” report, lesbian representation is up on cable to 27 percent of LGBTQ+ characters. That’s an increase of seven percentage points from the previous year. Only 18 percent of the regularly appearing LGBTQ+ characters overall were Black.
We’ve had our fill of shows like Girls, Sex and the City, and other white girl-centric comedies. Creating plotlines that will center not just a Black girl, but one who is also forthcoming with her queer identity will add a particular nuance that has been long overdue. Hopefully the people at TBS will realize how great of a need there is for Twenties and greenlight the show after making the pilot.