Before I begin this article, I would like to set one thing straight. As you may have heard, some idiots on twitter have decided to complain about the all-black cast featured in NBC's "The Wiz Live!" For example, this ignorant person:
However, I feel that it is important to state that as shocking as it may be, there already is an all-white version of the Wiz: it's called "The Wizard of Oz."
So as you can see, this is an argument that can best be described by the following quote from The Wiz:
And, for those still not convinced, there was in fact one white actor within the ensemble, so there you go, "The Wiz Live!" even by the most ridiculous of claims, is not racist.
Regardless of all that nonsense, there was one thing that "The Wiz Live!" was, and that is amazing. Featuring talent like Queen Latifah, Neyo, Uzo Aduba, and Mary J Blige, the show, despite previous uninspired NBC live productions (*cough* "Peter Pan Live!" *cough*), has exceeded expectations and actually provided an entertaining and heartfelt show. A show that was able to draw a total of 11.5 million viewers, and it's not hard to see why.The costuming was amazing, the vocals were all strong and the set pieces really helped bring the story to life. If you don't believe me, then just watch this clip:
But this show is much more than just three hours of singing and dancing; it's a remarkable moment for television. Confused as to why? Consider this: when have you ever seen this many people of color in one show, and in such a positive context? Especially on a major broadcasting station like NBC? Struggling to find some example? Well, that is because, sadly, these moments are not as common as they should be. As Viola Davis eloquently put it within her Emmy speech, "The only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity. You cannot win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there." And the beautiful thing is that for one night, those roles were there, and they allowed so many people to show off their talents in a way that might not have been possible. And this showcase of what many on Twitter have called Black Excellence is not only important because it allowed these voices to shine, but because it allowed every little black boy and girl to watch this and think, "Look, here's someone that looks like me and is being called beautiful and important. So I'm beautiful and important."
So do yourself a favor and watch "The Wiz Live!" on Hulu, NBC's website, or during the encore performance on December 19 at 8pm!