The Spectacular Legacy and Sparkling Future of Queen Sugar Season 7
Queen Sugar Season 7: Ava DuVernay’s Queen Sugar is a beautiful tribute to Black love and family that has been praised since its 2016 debut. At the beginning of Queen Sugar Season 7 after six years, the series has already cemented its place in American cultural history with an impact that is, arguably, greater than any other programme in recent memory.
ARRAY Filmworks and OWN’s production of “Save the Farm,” a melodrama about three siblings who work together after their father’s death, vividly brings to life the passion and pain of the Black family and culture in the American South. From the trauma of police brutality and mass incarceration to the unique pressures on Black masculinity, all of these aspects of modern Black life have been captured with great care through the lens of the Bordelon’s.
Stories of friendship, parenthood, and first love (as well as the rediscovery of a fading love) are just some of the ways in which Queen Sugar Season 7 honours the blessings of African American life and community. While a lot of TV shows claim they want to be socially relevant, very few actually deliver. Even fewer actors, most of whom are African-American, combine social consciousness with the same depth of character and dimension. At the time of the announcement of the series’ end, DuVernay said, “To write and produce seven seasons of a modern drama centred on a Black family is a radical act in our industry.”
The Queen Sugar Season 7 sensibility, which is distinctive, combines poetry and grit in equal measure. Queen Sugar stands out from the rest of the pack with its visually arresting aesthetic and its luxurious slow burn that builds on the pace of real life. The stunning cinematography is as much a tribute to the Bordelons and their land as it is to the stunning acting. Picture Dallas as seen through the lens of The Daughters of the Dust, as ground-breaking director Julie Dash oversaw multiple episodes in that show’s second season.
This production is renowned for its exceptional images of Black beauty, regardless of gender, at a time when many shows and photographers are still struggling to figure out how to light Black skin. The way the landscape and lighting capture the subject’s texture and complexion convey their unique appearance. Kofi Siriboe’s portrayal of Ralph Angel’s younger brother, Kofi, has made him a symbol of what it means to be a handsome Black man.
Queen Sugar Season 7
Of course, the most well-known distinction between Queen Sugar and the competition lies in the actions of those unseen behind the scenes. From the pilot episode on, DuVernay pledged to put women and people of colour in prominent roles and give them agency, two groups that are lacking in Hollywood both on-screen and in positions of creative control and technical roles.
The pledge to only have female directors was the most unequivocal. What DuVernay said she would do, she did. She hired 42 women to direct episodes over the course of the show’s seven seasons (most of them making their television directing debuts), creating a diverse and inclusive cast and crew that reflects the rich culture of Louisiana.
— TiBi Jamaica (@TiBiJa) November 9, 2022
It was more than just a change in policy; it was revolutionary action, the very best kind of disruption. According to Ava, “that act of saying ‘only women’ triggered a complete turnaround in our industry” in a span of just seven seasons. When we were the odd ones out for only hiring women, now it’s you who stand out for doing so when filling open positions.
There is substantial evidence of this legacy in the trade and popular press, academic journals, and a study commissioned by the City of New Orleans. More than just a financial boon, it also remade Louisiana into a prime location for the motion picture and television industries.
You can catch new episodes of Queen Sugar Season 7 every Tuesday night at 8 on OWN.
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