The official teaser trailer has finally dropped for Rap Sh!t, the new HBO Max comedy series from Issa Rae. The half-hour program has been billed as the story of “a female rap group from outside Miami trying to make it in the music industry,” and it was initially screened last month at the 2022 American Black Film Festival. City Girls rappers Yung Miami are executive producers on the show as well, and the premiere date for Rap Sh!t was just revealed, too: Thursday, July 21.
In October 2019, Deadline reported that Rae had already begun working on the pilot. But now that the final curtain has come down on her other hit series, Insecure, the enterprising Jill-of-all-trades has been giving her utmost focus to her latest project. Rap Sh!t follows two high school friends, Mia (played by KaMillion of Love & Hip Hop Miami fame) and Shawna (played by Aida Osman, who also writes and produces for the show), who come together after a long estrangement and do whatever it takes to leave their mark on The Magic City’s rap game.
Rae, Osman, and KaMillion sat down with Harper’s BAZAAR in May to talk about the fun they’ve had working on Rap Sh!t and what fans can expect from the show. “It’s comedy, it’s storytelling, it’s music, it’s fine b*tches!,” the 24-year old Osman told the outlet. “It’s interesting with Shawna—I’m giving her a lot of my personal storylines. In the writers’ room, we access our own personal stories and give them to the characters just by nature of having conversations about our life and about what’s going on in culture around us. We can have real conversations about Black femininity and control as a young creative, and that’s beautiful to me as a young creative and a Black woman.”
KaMillion said the role of Mia has been as much therapeutic as it’s been an easy fit, given her own musical background. “I found healing in myself just by getting an opportunity to navigate Mia’s life,” she shared. “Just trying to find your niche in life and doing whatever you gotta do to make these ends meet—without being ashamed of it! Every time I tried to separate [me and Mia], by the next episode, there was always something that related to my real f*cking life. We would do a scene and I’d be like, ‘Damn, I’ve been through this sh*t before!’ So it actually was a big help, because when you feel something that you’ve experienced before, you can take those things that you’ve learned and just really make that shit come to life and make it be believable.”
And Issa Rae considers the new show as one of the freshest entries in her stellar and expansive body of work. “This is kind of like my sophomore album—I consider Awkward Black Girl as my mixtape and Insecure my first album,” she explained. “So with this one, there is pressure, but I’m really excited about it. I hope that people have an open mind—it’s such a fun show.”
“The fact that it’s gonna drop in the summer feels right for these characters and for this story.” Rae added. “I hope it makes people laugh, and I hope anybody who is a creator, an entrepreneur, or just a music fan can relate.”