To celebrate Black Women in Comedy Week, VH1 created a new documentary called All Jokes Aside following a few leading ladies in the field including, Tichina Arnold, Amanda Seales, Luenell, Tiffany Haddish, Yvonne Orji, and many more as they unpack the ups and downs of being a comedian. From dealing with racism, sexism and the lack of representation that makes their lives as Black comediennes a lot of hard work. Being a Black woman is already tough, but these obstacles makes it even harder if you want to show the world how funny you are.
“Comedians are already sort of the last renegade entertainers, and the female comic is almost invisible. The female black comic, they just don’t focus on us at all,” Luenell boldly states in the doc.
Despite the unfair disadvantages of Black women in the industry, they still find ways to turn water into wine. Shout out older generations of comics like Whoopi Goldberg, LaWanda Page, and Marsha Warfield for breaking down barriers in the entertainment realm of stand-up, television, and film. They opened doors so that new breakout stars like Issa Rae can have the opportunity to create her own award-nominated HBO show. Without them a primetime network would not have the confidence to green light a show called Black-ish leading to Tracee Ellis Ross to her first Golden Globe Award win for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy Series.
VH1 is proud to be honoring these women as they continue to leave an everlasting mark in Hollywood, and inspire society as a whole. Watch the full All Jokes Aside documentary above, and check back to VH1.com as we’ll celebrate Black women in comedy all week.