Being Mary Jane: Storm Advisory
September 9, 2014 7:06 AM - Season 1, Episode 1 - Subscribe

This is the pilot episode of Being Mary Jane that followed up on the successful tv movie pilot (considered Episode 0 by Wikipedia). The episode follows up on events from that pilot film, but also recaps things well in case you haven't seen it: "Mary Jane Paul—all dimples and curves—is the daughter of a wealthy airline executive. She’s the star of “Talk Back with Mary Jane Paul,” a show that resembles Melissa Harris-Perry’s: it’s a mix of hard news and life-style pieces, and it has turned Mary Jane into a role model for other black women. Her home life, naturally, is a wreck."

Background:

The show was developed by Mara Brock Akil, who worked her way up from a PA on UPN and CW comedies to partnering with the Weinstein Group to come up with a show about a powerful, successful, witty black woman anti-hero (played by Gabrielle Union, who was passed up for the lead role in Scandal).

Despite consistently winning its timeslot across all networks there has been little mainstream press chatter about it. It has been picked up for a second season and the full first season was just released on Netflix.
posted by Potomac Avenue (5 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
I caught this ep on TV the other night and fell in love with the show immediately. The characters are so witty and real, and unlike just about any other TV dialogue I encounter in shows set now, they talk about pop culture AND high minded political and social concepts with ease. They actually use technology in normal ways too, and the newsroom scenes feel 20x more real than something like The Newsroom. There are no villains, just a bunch of flawed humans groping towards what they want, or think they want. But still plenty of OMG drama bombs.

Hoping to post one of these every few days while I work my way through the season on Flix before the new season which I believe comes back this fall.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 7:23 AM on September 9, 2014


I watched the leaked pilot and thought it was super-soapy but well acted, but it didn't have a hook in it's location or the plot. It was just like Scandal without politics or Grey's Anatomy without the hospital for medical stories each week (Shonda Rhimes! Similar feel with the cast of characters and focus on flawed professional people). I didn't realise there was a full season out already, and will try the next one.
posted by viggorlijah at 3:33 AM on September 10, 2014


I just saw eps 1 and 2, so I guess not the ep linked. It has great production values and the actors are great, though I'm not a fan of the background music. I like faster-paced music. I definitely would never have seen this without FF, so thanks, Potomac Avenue.

I feel like I saw Girlfriends and I remember Queen Latifah had something similar. This show is like the next generation or two away from those. It's really nice to see the evolution.

But, man, the story is just so damn depressing. There's nothing to lighten the sadness of MJ's life or balance her bad relationships. Even her friends are effed up! Too depressing.
posted by Ik ben afgesneden at 8:02 PM on September 10, 2014


It gets better! I think. Sort of. Idk I like depressing.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:09 PM on September 11, 2014


Potomac Avenue, I only know about this show because of this thread (no TV at home) so thanks an awful lot for posting. I like Mara Brock Akil even though I was never that into "Girlfriends", and was really excited to realize this show is a drama. Hopefully you'll keep posting these threads.

So far I really like... just about everything. I knew I knew her brother from somewhere but had to go to IMDB to realize it was Richard Brooks, the ADA from the earliest seasons of "Law and Order". I like that Mary Jane isn't always polite or sweet, she's not as kind as she could be to her family who's struggling. Not sure where the divergence between her and her brother is supposed to have come from, since she says they had the same "debutante ball" background, and she's making a mint on primetime and he's asking her for money. (I know what he needs it for. I'm more curious at the successful/non-successful divide between them.)

And I loved that she went after dude with the garden hose. No tearful confrontations, just out-and-out fury. That was fantastic.
posted by Nyakasikana at 3:15 PM on September 27, 2014


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