Boomerang: Bryson Gets A Backbone…Kinda

Last week BET premiered the highly anticipated series “Boomerang” with back to back airings of episodes 1 and 2. A lot of people went in expecting (and some secretly hoping) that it would be a giant mess and they could spend the next month or so clowning the show on Twitter. Luckily enough for us, Lena Waithe got us and the first two episodes were stellar. I really liked them.

Now that the season has officially begun, last nights’ third episode aired with just a little less pressure. However, it was still as engaging and fun as the first two. Despite being only thirty minutes, each episode so far has been thick with character development and plot points that I’m sure are going to be reoccurring all season long. It makes my head spin in a good way.

Bryson’s got it bad for Simone. So bad in fact that he’s having sex dreams about her and the dreams get so intense that he has to bring them up in therapy. Simone is in his every thought almost and as he sits with his therapist she inquires to Bryson whether or not he thinks it’s time to stand up for himself. To stand up to Simone. It’s going to be hard but it’s definitely something he has to do if he wants to get ahead in his job.

Meanwhile, Simone struggles to help Tia build a brand for herself. Tia isn’t as interested in being internet famous as Simone wants her to be but the latter of the two continues to push. Promising Tia that she knows best and it’ll pay off in the end. After all, she’s always right.

At Graham Agency, Bryson and Crystal manage to get approval from Vicky to promote a new experimental movie. It’s one that the higher-ups don’t understand but Vicky is grudgingly willing to let Bryson have a chance to prove himself. It’s a big opportunity for Bryson but he knows that he can’t do it alone and even with Crystal’s help, having Simone’s help as well would be all for the better. In the end, Bryson has to make a choice, stand up to Simone or let her continue to take over everything he does.

The thing that I like most about Boomerang is how openly and naturally it portrays Black Life. Over the years there have been a plethora shows that cast Black people to be in front of the camera only to have nothing but white people behind it. And in doing this, they continue to strip away Blackness. There are so many shows with Black characters that have white problems. With Boomerang though, every conversation feels natural. Even the ones that are meant to be awkward. The interactions practically mirror my friends and I. The problems the characters are going through are ones that I’ve heard older cousins with steady jobs complain about often. And on top of that, the show has flipped the gender construct nearly on its head. I loved the fact that Bryson is going to therapy regularly and that his therapist is a Black Woman. That’s definitely not something we see on tv but it is something we should work to normalize. Black men deserve to have safe spaces to talk things out too.

Another highlight of the episode was the twin directors whose movie “Woke” Bryson is trying to promote. Identical down to almost their movements, their scene not only provided some comic relief but it dropped so much knowledge on us as well. Starting with the fact that not all Black people are the same. It couldn’t be more evident with Bryson and the Twins. As he attempts to brainstorm catchy promotion ideas he quickly discovers that the Twins aren’t looking for the same kind of success that he is. And it bothers him, to the point where he gets frustrated and just decides he’ll have to promote their movie his way. Which is something a lot of Black people today struggle with. We all have this invisible line that we measure others success by. Everyone’s definition of success is different, even amongst ourselves. And that’s okay. Boomerang makes that clear, even if Bryson, Simone, and friends still have to learn this. It’s wonderful and honestly so intriguing. It’s the reason I’m looking forward to Tuesday nights now.

I also really appreciate the way the show handles sex. It’s a part of these characters lives but isn’t the focal point. The conversations they have about sex are relatable, on both ends. The characters aren’t shamed for what they are or aren’t into, they can openly talk with each other about it. It makes me hopeful that we’ll start to see some of the lesser known sexualities and more of the taboo sex subjects in coming episodes. As an Asexual, I’d jump over the moon if there was ever a Black Ace on this show in the future. Baby steps though, baby steps.

We’re only three episodes into Boomerang but if these ones are anything to go by, this season is going to straight up fire. And I’m so here for it.


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