South Central stars Tina Lifford as Joan Moseley and premiered on FOX in April of 1994. Tina Lifford plays a single mother to three children, Andre (Larenz Tate), Tasha (Tasha Scott), and Deion (Keith Mbulo). After getting laid-off from her job, she has to take up a position at the local co-op where she works with some true characters.
South Central only lasted ten episodes, but those episodes fulfilled things that we are missing about black life. We got to see black teenagers in love, how fathers not being a part of the home impacts children, the true hardships of what it is like to be the daughter who has to take the mother's place while she is away from the home, and we were also able to see the impact that community has on family life.
In the series, we were able to see Black people work together and care deeply about our community. In this day in age, time and time again, we are reminded that Black people do not care about their community because they tear it down and do not upkeep it. But throughout South Central, we are able to see homeless people receive jobs at the local Ujamaa Co-op grocery store. Black unity is an integral part of the show. The characters truly do have their differences, but individuality was also important as well.
We were even able to see Black children in therapy. In episode 4, Tasha ends up taking Deion's session and explaining to the doctor why she feels the way she feels. Each episode should and could be thoroughly examined because they were all revolutionary in their own way.
Hip-hop was celebrated and Black teenagers in love and experiencing relationships were explored. It is rare to see Black teenagers in love portrayed on television and movies in 2017, but we got the full experience back in 1994. Conversations about sex and love was discussed and we were able to see them explore their feelings.
Watch South Central and enjoy everything it has to offer. (It also features a very young J-Lo, post In Living Color.) You will be able to find a little piece of yourself in each character, and if you are Black, it will remind you of your experiences in some kind of way. It is truly a part of Black TV that needs to be remembered.
Watch 8 episodes of South Central, here.