I confess, as soon as the BET Hip Hop awards ended, I had my reservation about BET’s “Reed Between The Lines” starring Tracee Ellis Ross (Carla) and Malcolm Jamal Warner. However, I did post on facebook that I’d vow to give it a fighting chance. And I’m certainly glad that I did.
Outside of the obvious, similarities to the legendary Cosby Show…(2 professional parents married with cute kids in a neat 2 story home), the subject matter is so pertinent to modern times.
A blended family:
In the very first episode, you realize that the Reeds are a blended family, as Warner’s character, Alex is the step father to the older twins, Kaci & Keenan. This isn’t uncommon considering that 50% of marriages now end in divorce. As a divorcee, I understand this and have experienced it first hand.
However, the spin on the storyline is very refreshing. Because it’s inspiring to see that a person who has been divorced and has children from a different father can find a healthy relationship with someone else who’s willing to be a good father to children who aren’t biologically his.
As someone who intends to marry again, this is such a positive outlook. And while I don’t have children, I’m also optimistic that if the man that I marry has children, I can have a positive relationship with those children and be a great parent to them.
It’s also great to see that they address the issues of baggage that surfaces in any relationship, whether healthy or unhealthy. Carla becomes insecure when her client, who’s a sex addict is in the presence of her husband. Towards the end of it, they communicate about the issues. And Alex is honest about men looking at the things they see, but knowing what they have at home and not being willing to risk losing it.
Honestly, women have insecurities. And the fact that as beautiful as Carla is she still has them too is a truth that all men should be aware of. But I love how comforting and understanding Alex was. But he also reassured her that despite her experience with her ex-husband, he was a different person.
It also dispells many fallacies about what men notice and don’t really care about! (The whole matching bra and panty thing has always been a concern of mine too:))
It’s true, you feel totally different about your own than you do others. Many parents are definitely overlooking the problems they’re creating in their own homes. But are clear to pick up on the needs and problems of others. This storyline, in the 2nd episode, is a great forum to talk about the things we do for our children that may actually be hindering them, instead of advancing them. And with all of the modern technology and opportunities being more plentiful, than before the times of our forefathers, children aren’t required to work for the things that they want, as much as before. We underestimate children and their abilities. So, I hope that those who watched and have children took a close look at their parenting practices.
Anna Marie Horsford’s role (Ms. Helen) is a great addition and a good element, because she’s older and offers words of wisdom that even young professional adults still need to hear. I don’t know if those watching paid attention to the words of inspiration she offered in both episodes.
This is the problem with today. Many of us, young professionals think we have things all figured out. But we need to be paying attention to what those who’ve lived life a lot longer than we have, truly have to say.
All in all, this show is a breath of fresh air. The chemistry between Malcolm Jamal Warner and Tracee Ellis Ross is natural. The storylines are definitely pertinent and crosses all color lines. This isn’t just a good black show. It’s a great show for all audiences to watch and provides great materials for discussions in all homes.
I think BET has finally hit a Home Run with this new show!!! Great job!!!