Jay Connor

The Extraordinary Negroes + Extraordinary Ideas. 

Inquires: deathtoadverbs@gmail.com

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Review: The Woman King Is the Epic Action Film Black Women Deserve

Black women have always been at the forefront of the movement. From the tireless efforts of civil rights icon Ella Baker; to the unsung contributions of Coretta Scott King, who railed against racial injustice through song, fundraising, and other means; to other heroines like Daisy Bates or the astonishing work that WNBA players continue to put in today; Black women have proven time and time and time again that when they lead, we all win.

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Peacock's Bel-Air Is the Game Changer Black Hollywood Deserves

Let’s get this out the way now: 'Bel-Air' is not 'The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air'; nor does it aspire to be. To reinforce that distinction, Peacock bills its audacious reboot as a “contemporary dramatic reimagining of the beloved and culture-defining 90s sitcom”—and that description couldn’t be more accurate. While the show’s original incarnation chronicled Will’s collision course with Black opulence through the lens of boundless hijinks and hilarity, Bel-Air is decidedly much darker; firmly entrenched in the conflicts and emotions of our modern world while still honoring the spirit and innovation of its predecessor. So while you won’t see Carlton Banks embarrassing our ancestors to Tom Jones, you will see him still grapple with his identity and explore what it means to be Black through the prism of white kids who “don’t see color.”

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The Harder They Fall Breathes New Life Into the American Western Genre With Its Stylish Take on the Old West

While this declaration is accompanied by the disclaimer that yes, "The Harder They Fall" is a fictionalized work of art, this prelude serves as a timely reminder that while Jeymes Samuel’s first foray into feature film is unlike anything we’ve ever experienced before—though there are not-so-subtle nods to its forefathers like 1993’s Posse and the groundbreaking Buck and the Preacher—it’s steeped in the exact type of lore that historians either conveniently whitewash or blatantly dismiss.

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In Its Efforts to Make Itself a More Inclusive Sport, NASCAR Has Failed Already

When we say this among ourselves, the implication is understood. But since we now live in a world rife with brand spanking new “allies,” that phrase likely requires an explanation. Racism is exhausting, which, in turn, means white people are inherently exhausting too. Every single day of our lives, we’re either exposed to racism, recovering from it or suffering from the paranoia and anxiety of waiting for it to inevitably resurface.

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Review: With jeen-yuhs: A Kanye Trilogy, Directors Coodie and Chike Take Us Inside the Mind of a Tortured Genius

This three-part documentary does a masterful job of contextualizing Kanye’s indelible impact on pop culture, while adding a new dimension to the uncharted layers of his enigmatic lore. However, it’s up to you to decide—in light of his increasingly disturbing behavior in recent years—if this foray into undeniable genius is too little, too late to salvage what’s left of the Grammy Award-winning artist’s legacy.

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I Kept Hearing My Masculinity Was Under Attack by the Gay Agenda, So I Went to Pride to Test This Theory

I recall being both appalled and aghast upon waking up the next morning to this horrifying news and wishing there was something—anything—I could do to alleviate the anguish and fear that threatened to unravel so many of my friends. But in my efforts to be supportive, I also realized that I was operating out of sympathy instead of empathy—much like white folks do when they feign concern for our well-being but aren’t willing to forfeit their privilege—and got called out for it.

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On the Record: Russell Simmons Finally Faces the Music, But He Shouldn't Be the Only One Listening

My hope is that On the Record wakes our community up, but more specifically, that it inspires black men to assess our roles as active participants in the destruction of black women. To reflect on our mistakes, hold ourselves accountable and challenge each other to elevate our queens instead of constantly tearing them down or remaining indifferent to their plight. To that end, it’s equally important that we emerge from the shadows and provide the same unwavering public support that we’ve received throughout our lives as though it’s our birthright.

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Help! I Can't Stop Listening to Steve Lacy's Gemini Rights!

Nearly every track is a master class in guile and seduction, as intricate guitar chords, casual ketamine references, and mellifluous melodies lull you into orgasmic bliss—right before they crawl into a cocoon and evolve into something entirely new by the end of each song. One of the best examples of this is “Sunshine,” a worthy frontrunner for song of the year, that starts off as a breezy ode to that complicated dynamic between exes that your therapist keeps warning you about (“Why can’t we just get along? Or, at least, let’s get it on?”) before Lacy inhales a can of Popeye’s spinach and transforms the song into what I would imagine the birth of Christ sounded like—away in a manger and all.

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'Coronavirus Will Forever Change Bedside Care': Black Healthcare Workers Reveal Their Own Struggles to Survive a Global Pandemic

The coronavirus doesn’t just ravage the body of those infected; it wreaks havoc on all those in proximity to it. It plays on the minds of those who, while not suffering from the actual disease, are caring for those who are. COVID-19's alarming infection and death rates bring with it the weight of uncertainty and the fear of unpredictability and the soft whisper of, “God, please don’t let it be me.”

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On Finding Joy Where You Can During This Pandemic, Despite These Less Than Ideal Circumstances

I think it’s safe to say that it’s been a challenging year. Unlike countless others, I’ve been extremely fortunate to remain gainfully employed and have somehow eluded the coronavirus entirely as it continues to wreak havoc upon so many I hold dear. But while I’ve made it a point to count my blessings and remain positive, the fact remains that much like millions of other people, this pandemic has had a profound impact on me.

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'When They See Us' Is the Haunting Masterpiece the Central Park Five Deserve

In delving into the rotted core of the Big Apple, very few details are spared over the course of four mesmeric episodes. We bear witness to a lead prosecutor who ignores her moral objections in favor of convicting children she knows are innocent. We bristle as investigators pervert and contort the truth, causing families to burst at the seams. We watch helplessly as trauma engulfs the serenity of Black Boy Joy, and the promise of tomorrow becomes the gruesome scars of yesterday. As such, it’s a lot to endure. Almost too much.

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