Wanking in the late 80's?

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verucassault

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Hi all,
I havent been on this site in ages! OMG but I have a question and maybe you all can help.
I am doing research for a writing project and working on a character who adores fat.

Can anyone remember what actresses (specifically black and fat) served as, ahem, mastabatory fodder? This character discovered he liked black fat women by accident while staying up late watching television.

I'm looking for actresses/movies/television shows that may have come out late 80's/early 90's- this would fit with my character's age.

The only one that comes to mind is Nell Carter in gimme a break or Dela Reese in Harlem Nights.

Any other suggestions.

Thanks in advance
 

Yakatori

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If you're talking late 80's & prime-time, then you're probably thinking of either 227 or Amen. Gimme a Break was a bit earlier than that. However, like Nell Carter, many of those black actresses featured therein first achieved some smaller notoriety on Broadway. And then, of course, day-time TV (soaps).
 

Yakatori

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To add: Gimme a Break, actually, did run until 1987. However; and certainly by the sixth season when they'd brought in Joey Lawrence's little brother, it had already jumped-the-shark, so to speak.

Conversely, 227 featured a number of beautiful & talented women including Jackée Harry & Alaina Reed Hall. Also a then very young Regina King, who would go on to some progressively heavier roles, like in the film Jerry MacGuire (starring Tom Cruise) or TNN's Southland . But, Amen; and perhaps because of its sort of odd premise; was, I always thought, decidedly funnier & more strongly character-driven. Anchored by the incomparable Sherman Helmsley, all of other parts seemed to really pull their own weight. Here, as follows, a fairly typical episode; but first please take note of the theme:

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4N83L29yGKI[/ame]

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CT7MCKeQOa8[/ame]
 
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LillyBBBW

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Or maybe Jackée Harry who was Aundra Clarke, the voluptuous next door neighbor in "227" that starred Marla Gibbs.

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ETA: Yakatori beat me to it. :)
 

snuggletiger

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Thought her name on the show was Saundra Clark. Very good foil for Marla Gibbs' character Mary
 
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I needed to comment about how epic the title of this thread is. This thread could have been about anything with that title. ;)
 

Yakatori

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But I just chalk it up to that whole gestalt of Germans being more....yannow, direct.

As for Jackée Harry, yes, her character is the one most clearly recognizable as an actual sex-pot, most narrowly defined. But, I wonder if veruca isn't also looking for a less conventional choice; or to what extent she's really committed to so precise an idea of where such a influence would necessarily have to come from, at least time-wise

For example, a young person actually "staying up late watching television," wouldn't necessarily be so limited to these prime-time type of examples, as they were first broadcast. Especially if they grew-up with cable.

Actually, not that any of it really applies to me-directly; but I would suspect that for any person who's watched a lot of TV, their tastes & influences will more likely reflect a much broader range of mediums and time periods. As if they've developed a kind of taste, or more informed and finely nuanced sense of comparison and context in which to consider pretty-much everything else they watch.

Which brings to mind another point, about the influence of Bill Cosby in all of this; how, before & up to a certain point, even if you can see at least some well-crafted, fleshed out black characters on prime time, they still generally adhered to certain established tropes, e.g Maid versus World's Most Interesting Man. Then, as if all at once, it's like every other show is somehow measured against the standard of this one particular model, trying in a number of different ways and with varying degrees of success either in contrast to or through a replication of some particular aspect of it. If not just trading off of its already established audience (as in A Different World). Which, necessarily, doesn't really make a whole lot of room for either particularly fat characters or even so many black characters who just happen to be a bit fat.

Still, this ultimately helps to transition to a point where, as many of these shows as there are, along with a concurrent technological evolution across broadcast television, and larger & smaller channels and production companies alike come along to better monetize this niche of more smaller shows, each with a more specific type of appeal. Until such shows improve & develop to where they become their own segment within primetime. Here, Living Single, for some reason, comes to mind. Featuring not one incidental larger woman of color, but, roughly matching that description, three very different & distinct characters as portrayed by Queen Latifah, Kim Coles, and Kim Fields respectively. Each, kind of, upwardly mobile & ambitious, yet still relatable, in their own way, reflecting a uniquely personal balance all their own.

Heh, also, here's some of some of Cree Summer's music, just in case anyone was curious:

[ame]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQ9CZ6vWrz8[/ame]
 

verucassault

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not really looking for the sex pot so much and as i try and work out the details as to how he discovered his love for big black women the late night tv thing might not work.

the character isnt american but lives in a country where american shows could be shown in syndication (sweden). the problem with that is, sydication usually happens years after the shows have shown and i doubt in this country they would show shows with primarily black cast. (hell they barely had those shows in the US)

i could however say the character was watching the tonys or some shit with his mom and noticed a broadway singer.

i mean how else would a scandinavian kid see big black women, LOL
 

Yakatori

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...a country where american shows could be shown in syndication (sweden). the problem with that is, sydication usually happens years after the shows have shown and i doubt in this country they would show shows with primarily black cast. (hell they barely had those shows in the US)..
That surprises me in a way, since, at least back-then, I would've just intuitively expected anything so distinctly American to have a certain cache for a youthful foreign audience. And for Swedes, in particular, if it has that now-hipsterism quality? e.g., a show like What's Happening?, which was quite popular during its original run, and, I think, became even more popular, on the whole, in later, subsequent syndications.

It featured two heavier black women of note: One, Shirley Hemphill, was a still young but already somewhat established comedienne of note, although certainly not yet as familiar to the national audience as she would become through her role as the waitress of the main character's favorite hangout.

Her character was ascribed the same first name; and, just an interesting fact, virtually all of the main characters on this series are named in some way notably similar to the respective actor's name. So, Ernest Thomas portrayed Rodger "Raj" Thomas, Heywood Nelson played "Dwayne-Wayne" Nelson, and Fred Berry played Freddy "Rerun" Stubbs.

Just for kicks, here's Shirley not too far out-of-character:

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NRmCG3ZOpkc[/ame]

In contrast, Mabel King, who played the main character's mother, Mrs. Mabel Thomas, was more of that category I described above, of having already established some fame on Broadway. I, personally, thought she was a great TV-mom. Because, even as the overall tone of the show was much more light-comedic than, say, an at times strident All in the Family, you really came away with this sense of her knowing all too well what these young men were up against. She just seemed to carry herself through whatever trivial indignities with a decidedly seasoned candor and knowing-grace. However, if you're actually going to write about this, then it's probably also worth taking some note of how, in this time of political-correctness, her traditional methods of discipline might not be so well-reflected in a modern-light.

That is, if I can remember correctly, if I'm not completely imagining it, you never actually saw her hit Rodger physically. But there does seem to be some circumstantial indication (his walking with a noticeable limp afterward) of her favorite target. Aren't there also scenes where she, just eerily calm, requests for Rodger to find and bring her own belt?

Here is some of her music as well:

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wpr5ZVLfz-w[/ame]
 

Tad

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One of my favorite shows from the 80's that both my sister and I enjoyed immensely was Night Court which had an amazing cast. Among them was Marsha Warfield, a very good stand-up comic who delivered some of the best dead pan one liners in the business.

I'd forgotten about Night Court--but yah, a really under-rated show (IMO) with some great character acting.
 

verucassault

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wow you guys are really jogging my memory. thanks! im working on this character's chapter tonite. still at a loss. i'll sort it though
 

CastingPearls

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Weezie from The Jeffersons!


(I was going to suggest Living Single too, but that took place in the '90's)
 

Yakatori

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"I'd forgotten about Night Court--but yah, a really under-rated show (IMO) with some great character acting."
Ah...I dunno. Night Court is one of those I remember liking certain things about it: the theme & opening montage, the oddball premise, John Larroquette, etc.. But, just when the wheels meet the road, I dunno if it's the type of show that holds up so well, today. Like, it's not a show I could see myself wanting to watch a whole episode today. To use a comparable example of what I would suspect its writers wanted it to be like, just in terms of the overall tone, it's not really on the same level of, say, a show like Taxi, the theme/opening montage of which I could listen to/watch over and over and over again many times. The casting of which, for each of its individual characters, I think is as good as Larroquette's Dan Fielding.

My favorite, as far as what I think of as being in the quirky/underrated category, would be something like NewsRadio.

But What's Happening!! is on a whole other level. Looking at some episodes of both What's Happening!! & What's Happening Now!!, it now occurs to me that were it not for the hiatus, the show/franchise effectively leaving the air for 5 years or so, it really had the potential to have been a bit bigger, better recognized in the mainstream. As it is, I feel like it stands shoulder to should with any of the great shows you might think of, like an All in the Family or Seinfeld or what have you.

One of my favorite episodes:

[ame]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SHfhAcvqr_g[/ame]
 

Yakatori

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Sound pops back in @1:15 or so.

[ame]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F7C4j1aEblU[/ame]
 

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