Talkin' TV: 'Tuca & Bertie' Deserved Better, Seriously.
Tiffany Haddish voicing a free-spirited, loud, kind-hearted cartoon lady bird is everything I never knew I needed! Netflix’s original series "Tuca & Bertie" stars Tuca & Bertie, two 30 something-year-old animated best friend bird ladies voiced by comedic actresses Tiffany Haddish and Ali Wong. The first episode of the series entitled ‘The Sugar Bowl’ begins with the end of Tuca and Bertie living together so Bertie's Boyfriend Speckle (voiced by fine ass Steven Yeun) can move in and start a new chapter in their lives. It becomes clear that being two sides of the same coin is the exact reason that they need each other. Tuca’s off the cuff, adventurous personality helps Bertie take a chance in following her dreams and finding her voice. Bertie often being the responsible, put together half gives Tuca a safe space for dealing with her past and growing towards the better person 00she’s becoming.
Creator of "Tucca & Bertie", Lisa Hanawalt, is also the mastermind behind BoJack Horseman (yes, the first half of the final season is destroyed me and I’m hungry for more). Although both these shows are of the same creator, they don’t take place in the same universe, which is an important distinction. There are certain criticisms I have a hard time accepting, specifically that "T&B" isn’t as funny as Bojack Horseman. Women are funny dammit, and these women are ACTUAL COMEDIANS so cut the shit. Maybe you don’t like them, fine, but you can’t deny the supporting characters that hold their own like Mother of Black Hollywood Jennifer Lewis as Aunt Tallulah and "friend in my head" Nicole Byer as pretty much everyone else. "T&B" has so much heart and gives a necessary look at what it can mean to be any type of woman. I love that women here are front and center, broken, healing, and growing for themselves. From combating sexual harassment in the workplace to the difficulties of recovering from alcoholism, the relatable tone is everything.
According to Fortune.com, soon after Lisa announced on Twitter that Netflix wasn’t supportive of a second season, outrage sparked a petition to save the show that was signed by upwards of 2,000 signatures in the first 17 hours. How does Netflix determine popularity? How do they choose which shows to promote over others? I saw maybe one or two trailers for "Tuca & Bertie" on Netflix and TV show websites maybe a handful of times. Fortune.com explained that Netflix’s algorithm is essentially an echo chamber for TV and Film. Recommendations are based heavily on patterned viewing habits, so if you haven’t watched any (or many) other adult cartoon animations you wouldn’t know that "Tuca & Bertie" ever existed. Tell me, how do you watch and search for something you don’t even know to look for? EXACTLY.
Just know that I’m not resting until "Tuca & Bertie" get the love and respect it deserves. Being diverse in content and characters, culturally relevant, and a leg many women can stand on makes this show more than enough. I will continue to watch season one until my eyes bleed and will continue to encourage everyone else to do the same. The sooner "Tucca & Bertie " comes back, the better life will be, I just hope it lasts long enough that I see my own brilliance in its writer’s room.
I'm not going to ask for comments this week, just go watch and rewatch "Tuca & Bertie" on Netflix! Like and share with someone in need of a new show to binge-watch.