Why the "Us" Trailer is so Refreshing for Black Families
When the trailer for the movie “Us” came out on Christmas Day, it seemed to shake up the nation. Not only did the film itself just look horrifyingly good, but it was also very refreshing for Black people around the country.
After many questions about the film’s premise, Jordan Peele has stated that the film has nothing to do with race, contrary to his Oscar-winning 2017 film "Get Out". At a screening of the "Us" trailer, Peele told the audience that it was very important for him “to have a Black family at the center of a horror film”. It's very rare to see Black people in this genre, so having an entire Black family as the center of the film is exciting.
Having Black main characters of any film will send the masses of the Black population running into the theater spending their coin out of support. But this film, in particular, is refreshing because the main characters seem to be a normal Black family. We are so used to seeing Black families with a parent missing (usually the father) because they are in jail or just missing for a reason that is never explained. Sometimes we see a single Black mother who has been made into the popular Black stereotype of the “welfare queen”. When we do see a middle class, nuclear Black family, there seems to be one family member (usually the daughter) who is unrealistically lighter than the rest of the family.
Based off the trailer, the film "Us" will feature a dark-skinned, middle-class suburban family who is able to be friends with white people while still listening to music such as The Luniz’s “I Got 5 On It” during family time. This is extremely refreshing for 21st century Black families who live in the suburbs and, have white friends and acquaintances, but are also still very aware of their Black identities.
While I do think it is important for there to be multiple representations of Black people in televisions and movies just like how there are in real life — the good, the bad, and the ugly — I think that this movie will be a positive representation of how a lot of Black people live today.