Pop Culture Fix: Lena Waithe’s “The Chi” Looks Incredible Especially This Lesbian Millisecond and Other Stories

Welcome to your weekly pop culture fix, a journey from land to sea and back again!

+ The trailer for Lena Waithe’s new Showtime show, The Chi, has dropped, and IT’S GONNA BE SO GOOD.


Here’s a description of this program, created and executive produced by Emmy® winner Lena Waithe (Master of None), and executive produced by Academy Award® winner Common (Selma) and Elwood Reid (The Bridge, Hawaii Five-O):

“The Chi is a powerful coming-of-age drama series about an interconnected group of working-class African-Americans on Chicago’s volatile south side, who remind us that no matter what, the human spirit is strong and hope never dies. The series, which explores the humanity behind the headlines sensationalizing the South Side of Chicago, will premiere on Sunday, January 7 at 10 p.m. ET/PT.”

I believe, based on some incredibly intense instagram creeping, that the two women kissing in the pilot are the characters of Nina Williams (Tyla Abercrumbie) and Karen (Malkia Stampley), who are (maybe?) the Moms of Keisha (Birgundi Baker).

They don’t seem to be main characters but regardless this show is gonna be great and we are all here for it and everything Lena Waithe does now and forever.

+ ‘Black-ish’ Spinoff ‘College-ish’ Officially Ordered to Series at Freeform — Sources I cannot reveal indicate that there’ll be a bisexual female lead, Nomi (played by Emily Arlook) (the character is called “Miriam” in some other press materials) who will be dating some girls and therefore we will experience the glory of more than one queer female character on this blessed TV show. However, Carmen and Natalie saw the back-end pilot when it aired and said it was pretty disappointing, so hopefully things will turn around before the show’s 2018 launch. According to The Hollywood Reporter, “College-ish was originally developed for ABC. Sources note that the pilot skewed too young to join the flagship series on the broadcast network. Freeform, which has been ramping up originals and looking for noisy fare as flagship drama Pretty Little Liars prepares to sign off, swooped in.”

‘Princess Cyd’ Tells A Queer Coming-Of-Age Story Across One Enlightening Summer:

“The titular 16-year-old (Jessie Pinnick), an athlete whose mother died when she was young. Cyd escapes her depressive single father for a summer with her aunt (Rebecca Spence), a well-known Chicago novelist who encourages Cyd to explore a fling with an androgynous barista about town (Malic White). As in the heralded “Call Me by Your Name,” sexuality in “Princess Cyd” is a free-flowing development, rippling against the agony and ecstasy of youthful self-discovery.”

This Nancy Drew Reboot Better Be Queer As Hell, Or I Will Be Mad As Hell: Same.

+ Netflix ‘binge-racers’ favorites: ‘Gilmore Girls,’ ‘Fuller House’: Who are you people

+ 13 Powerful Lesbian & Bisexual TV Characters Who Are Still Kicking Ass

+ Jackie Shane, Genderqueer Soul Survivor, Prepares For Her Comeback

+ Pink on Labeling Her Sexuality: ‘I Just Wanna Live My Life’

+ The ‘Mindhunter’ Exit Survey: “The scene where Wendy, a queer woman forced into the closet at work by social stigma, calls out Bill’s prejudice against cross-dressing as part of his archaic masculinity, which he’s currently wrestling with while struggling to connect to his adopted son? Perfection.”

+ By the way have you watched Halt and Catch Fire yet? Because it’s really great and there’s a little lesbian storyline in it.


+ Kristen Stewart Addresses Sexual Harassment of Below-the-Line Workers in Hollywood: Stewart points out that there are many women who have even less agency in Hollywood who are also the victims of sexual harassment and assault

+ Amazon exec resigns after ‘The Man In The High Castle’ producer accuses him of harassment: Isa Hackett, the producer who made the allegations, identifies as a lesbian and is married.

+ 12 LGBT Celebs Who Spoke Out About Harassment, Abuse

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Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of Autostraddle.com as well as an award-winning writer, video-maker, LGBTQ+ Marketing consultant and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and now lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in nine books, magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. She's Jewish and has a cute dog named Carol. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3211 articles for us.


  1. Is this the same Nancy Drew as the one CBS rejected or a whole different one? Sarah Shahi already has another show and so NOW who am I supposed to dream cast in that role?!

    • I read about the new new Nancy Drew a few days ago and sadly, no, it won’t be the same Sarah Shahi show. It sounds more like the books and drama-ish:

      “The project, which is in development, has an entirely new logline at CBS despite hailing from the same producing team and studio (CBS Television Studios). Here’s the new logline: “When the author of the most famous female teen detective series is thrust into a real-life murder mystery, who does she turn to for help? Her two best friends from childhood, who were the inspiration for all those books, and the women who have a real ax to grind about the way their supposed best friend chose to portray them all those years ago.”

  2. I’m only on episode 3 of Mindhunter and Wendy was just introduced. I totally got a queer vibe off her and it looks like I wasn’t wrong.

        • I am mutual with a bi woman on tumblr who is a big Disney fan and of the Full House/Fuller House series. So, there are some 20 something people watching the new show. I am an ex Full House fan(I think many of us watched it on Fridays in the 90s, along with Family Matters and Hanging with Mister Cooper, two shows that has crossover with Full House coincidentally).

  3. Mindhunter — Wendy is stated to be a lesbian IN THE SHOW. I know some don’t agree with this but I don’t like the word “queer” being used as a catch all for all women attracted to women. Some women do prefer to use queer as a label but when a character’s preferred label is explicitly stated then that’s word that should be used. It just frustrates me. IDK.

    But I do agree with the people in the article’s opinion about Debbie. I’m still in the process of finishing the series but I find her character irksome in ways I can’t quite articulate yet.

  4. i’ve never seen black-ish EXCEPT for LITERALLY ONLY the five-minute clip from the one episode about zoey starting college where she and another girl are horrible about an orientation leader who uses they/them pronouns AND I’VE SEEN IT TWICE SOMEHOW

    it was really shitty and i can only hope that the move to freeform will lead it in a better direction

    • Yes, I was talking to some of the other writers today about that EXACT SCENE! It really stuck with me. I think we’re all hoping that they find a better change in direction.

    • I watch the show frequently, but I don’t remember this scene. The show also has a bit of a problem throwing Jewish and Middle Eastern people under the bus; Tracee is half Jewish and Yara is half Iranian, so it’s kind of awkward they do that.

  5. Riese, I watched both the Gilmore Girls sequel and each of the three seasons of Fuller House in under 24 hours each.

    I am “you people”.

      • I knowwwww!!!

        I want to tell you that I know better… I know I should know better…. and yet here we are!

        Hey, we all have our things.

        • It’s understandable. I watched half of the first season of Fuller House out of a 90’s nostalgia, but the lack of the Olsens and Bob Saget paired with Candace Cameron(she has problematic white girl politics).

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