‘black-ish’ boss: It’s for everyone, so don’t talk diversity


BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — ABC’s hit comedy “black-ish” dwells on an African-American family, but Kenya Barris, the show’s creator, says he isn’t interested in profiling who sees it.

“It’s ridiculous: Everything is about black and white,” he said. “It doesn’t matter who’s watching our show. What counts is, they’re watching it.

“I would be so happy when ‘diversity’ is not a word,” he continued on Thursday at the Television Critics Association summer conference during a panel discussion with the show’s producers and all-black cast. “These are amazing, talented actors who are giving it their all. We’re so tired of talking about diversity at every panel. The question of diversity clouds the conversation.”

Even so, Barris disclosed that roughly one-fourth of the audience is black, with much of the rest white-ish.

“Sometimes those questions can skew the conversation in a direction that does not help the conversation,” said Tracee Ellis Ross, who co-stars with Anthony Anderson as the upper-middle-class parents of four youngsters.

Anderson said he hears the same thing about the show from its fans, whatever their color or ethnicity: “When I see your family up there on that screen, I see mine.”

“My mom would always say that it feels like they have cameras in our house,” said Marcus Scribner, who plays older son Andre Jr. “The show tells the same stories that every single family goes through.”

“black-ish,” which won a Peabody Award this year and is nominated for three Emmy awards, returns for its third season on Sept. 21.

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