Rank #1: Chidi and The Good Place
This week Eric talks with Cord Jefferson, a writer for NBC’s The Good Place, about how Blackness is depicted in the afterlife (Eric’s Chidi Anagonye standom is also discussed). Later, Eric tells Brittany the legendary story of a little-known Black cowboy that’s better than any tall tale.
Rank #2: Good For The Blacks: Cardi vs. Nicki
The beef between rap titans Cardi B and Nicki Minaj consumed the news this year. Shoes have been thrown, emails leaked, political candidates endorsed, and Harriet Tubman’s queenhood questioned. We consult comedian Nore Davis and associate editor at Vulture Hunter Harris to determine whether the beef is Good For The Blacks.
Rank #3: The Hairstons Part 2: Diary of a Mad Black Cousin
Every year, descendants of both enslaved people and slave owners come together for a family reunion. The darker side of their shared past remains hidden underneath the celebrations and pleasantries. Until one year, when Ever Lee Hairston says two words that break decades of silence.
Rank #4: An Oral History of Knuck If You Buck
We reunite members of Crime Mob to get the inside story of Knuck If You Buck, the club anthem that defined the crunk era and took them from high school kids to rap legends. All tea, no shade—straight from the people who lived it: Diamond, Princess and Lil Jay.
Rank #5: Good For The Blacks
Snoop Dogg has a TV show with Martha Stewart. The Tyler Perry movie "Boo! A Madea Halloween" made almost $100 million at the box office. A Black man once held the nuclear codes for President Trump. Sometimes in life we have to decide if a thing is good or bad for the Culture.RELATED LINKSRead Vinson Cunningham’s work at The New Yorker: http://www.newyorker.com/contributors/vinson-cunninghamFollow Aminatou Sow on Twitter. She's @aminatou. If you are struggling to decide if something is good for the Blacks, email us at goodfortheblacks AT gimletmedia DOT com.
Rank #6: Can MDMA Treat Racial Trauma?
A new kind of treatment for PTSD, MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, may be just a few years away from legalization. What could it do for Black patients struggling with trauma? Brittany speaks to one woman about her experience with MDMA in therapy.
Rank #7: On That Lo Life $hit
Eric's always had an affinity for Polo Ralph Lauren. But he discovers a group of boosters in Brooklyn that took their love for Polo to another level.
Rank #8: Sister, Sister
Producer Simone Polanen thought she knew her little sister well, until she discovered a major part of her sister’s identity that she knew nothing about. When Simone confronts her sister, the conversation gets heated.
Rank #9: Beignets In, Breathe Out
What foods do you associate with Black culture? Eric’s friend makes him a sugary treat with surprising connections to the Congo. Plus, Brittany talks to a woman who helps breathe new life into people… literally.
Rank #10: Taco Bout It
Oo-OOOOOO! It’s quesadilla time. Brittany heads to L.A. to talk with a chef who’s making “Black tacos.” Turns out they’re more than just a delicious food.To find a list of our sponsors and show-related promo codes, go to gimlet.media/OurAdvertisers
Rank #11: I Want That Purple Stuff
Jolly Ranchers. Skittles. Gatorade. No matter what, Eric always goes for the purple stuff. This week, he uncovers the deliciously deep roots of his love for grape flavor. Plus, Eric challenges Brittany to eat an unhealthy amount of peanut butter… all for the culture.
Rank #12: I Am A White Woman
The movie "White Chicks" may have made critics— and honestly, the world —cringe, but Brittany delivers her treatise on why the film deserves a second look.
Rank #13: The Leopards of Zaire
This week, we’ll take you to Zaire for a story about national identity, colonialism, and one of the most notorious dictators in history. All courtesy of our friends at the new Gimlet podcast, “We Came to Win.”To find a list of our sponsors and show-related promo codes, go to gimlet.media/OurAdvertisers
Rank #14: The Nod Bureau of Investigation
A woman comes to the Nod Bureau of Investigation (NBI) with a mystery that only a Black person could have. Brittany and her team of detectives embark on a search for a long lost childhood memento and become entangled in a web of Internet k-holes and clandestine Facebook groups.
Rank #15: From Zamunda to Wakanda
Coming to America may have given us the greatest Jheri Curl anthem ever made, but that doesn’t make it untouchable. With a potential sequel on the way, we asked a question we never thought we’d ask: is Coming to America, good or bad for the Blacks? Guests Luvvie Ajayi and Saidu Tejan-Thomas help us decide.
Rank #16: Hold The Vibranium, Please
This week we’re heading to Wakanda, y’all! Black Panther's Erik Killmonger might be fine and fighting for black liberation, but does that make him a hero ? We invited Kara Brown and Aaron Edwards to help us decide: is Wakanda's rebel, good or bad for the Blacks ?
Rank #17: Drake of the Diaspora
Drake might be proud of us, but are we proud of him? In our latest Good For The Blacks, we debate Drizzy’s sampling of the African diaspora with Vicky Mochama and Sarah Hagi.
Rank #18: It's a Black Thing
When we discover something we love at The Nod, we’ve gotta share it with the fam. Eric’s close friend, a self-proclaimed “glo-up artist,” explains how a piece of clothing changed his life forever. And Eric shares something he just can’t stop thinking about.
Rank #19: The Hairstons Part 1: Snakes on a Plantation
At a plantation in the South, descendants of enslaved people and slave owners stayed together as family, entangled by namesake and blood, long after the end of slavery. Eric tells the story of one woman who broke away.
Rank #20: Don Lemon is... Magneto
Some funny things happened in the past year: a reality TV star became president, tiki torches had to renounce white nationalism, and CNN's Don Lemon seemingly went through a reinvention. In our latest edition of Good For The Blacks, culture writer Ira Madison III joins us to debate Don Lemon’s 'transformation’ from respectability politician in chief to beacon of wokeness.