Updated: Apr 15
So as I am sitting here waiting for Love and Hip Hop to die, it keeps adding cities and new seasons. As I watch with guilt, disgust, and the periodic laughs I started thinking. I love hip hop, and I love love in hip hop, but this was never the way I envisioned Love and Hip Hop. Ever!
I grew up seeing love and hip hop as Love and Basketball, The Wood, and my all-time favorite movie, also the direct definition of love and hip hop, Brown Sugar. That’s the love and hip hop I enjoyed watching. That I looked up to. That I wanted to be in. And we can’t say people don’t watch it. (I don’t have to explain that one.) We can say it doesn’t sell. (Check every black person’s movie collection.) And we can’t say it doesn’t have an adversely positive affect on how young black people view love.
So then I thought, well you know how these reality TV shows go, they find a story then add some drama. So do these positive stories not exist? No! We know they do, we just fail to highlight them. The media doesn’t highlight these stories, because we don’t ask for them too.
My prime example is Danyel Smith and Elliott Wilson. They are the epitome of Love and Hip Hop. Two hip hop journalists who have been around the industry from its take-off. Not only have they been in it, but they have also studied and critiqued it as it has grown. Oh yeah, and they are in love! Married for over ten years with no negative media attention and handling their business. They have taken it upon themselves to showcase their love and work-life balance. If you ever hear them in an interview it's not often that they don’t talk about each other. There was even one interview Elliott did where Danyel was just there because they hadn’t seen each other due to travel. They embarked on a business venture together with the creation of Hard Cover. Oh yeah, and they started their own podcast called Relationship Goals. Because they are what we should be showcasing on national TV to look up to. But instead, we are showcasing the quickest way to get money and fame, sleeping with a rapper. *Drop the Twista violins*
Real Recognize Real: Check out their feature in Fader’s At Home With series.