Just when I thought I’d had enough of “hospital shows,” Hawthorne comes along. Between the legendary ER, Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice, I figured there were only so many ways left to cause a patient’s death, fall in love with a co-worker or dying patient (Izzy) or sleep with the boss. I guess I was wrong and right.
This is Hawthorne‘s second season, and honestly, I only watched it the first time around because it’s staring Jada Pinkett Smith. It’d been a while since she’d graced the small screen. She’s a great actress, but I couldn’t get into the story line. Needless to say, I stuck with my other “hospital shows.”
After Hawthorne’s hospital closed down, she moved on to another facility. Enter Vanessa Bell Calloway (She will always be “Jackie” from What’s Love Got to Do With It?), who plays Gail Summer, the hospital’s head nurse. Two words to describe her character: Straight Bitch. What kind of person denies the care of a woman in severe pain, belittles staff and has the dying patient’s boyfriend arrested to prove her authority? Apparently, the writers thought this was a great character for a black actress. Great.
Don’t get me wrong, Calloway does a superb job of playing the bitch. As she threw a tirade in the chief’s office over having her position taken away, she went on about fancy doctors who come in to change the way things are done, only to leave for a better job, leaving her to pick up the pieces in a struggling hospital. And let me tell you, that hospital was the worst.
The point is, after that scene, even I, a black woman thought, Well, just what we need. Another attitudinal black woman. Let the eye rolling begin.
Yeah, that sums it up. I can’t tell you how many shows I’ve seen where two women have butted heads over something. It makes a good story because everyone knows a bitch. Hell, you might be the one. I feel differently about seeing two black women at each other’s throats on television though. Unfortunately, art imitates life, and maybe these writers are showing what we see all too often: Black chicks who don’t like each other.
In Hawthorne‘s case, I think it’s more so Summer’s demotion that’s causing such an attitude. She seems to thrive on being the HBIC, thus dead set against the inevitable change coming her way. In many women’s cases though, it could be any reason why she doesn’t like another, even if the woman isn’t really sure herself. How many times have you heard this?
Woman 1: Oh, I saw **Melinda** the other day. You know her?
Woman 2: **Major side-eye** Yeah. I don’t really know her-know her. I don’t like her.
Woman 1: Why?? She’s cool.
Woman 2: I don’t know. It’s just something about her.
I don’t doubt a woman’s intuition, her ability to see what the eye does not, but most times, there’s a reason for blatant dislike, that the woman just doesn’t want to admit. Could it be something as petty as the other woman’s attire, style, hair, career, accomplishments, relationship, etc.?
Are black women quicker to size each other up than other races? Why are we always pitted against each other? Have you experienced this?