CBS Soap Operas Called Out on Diversity Issues
Y&R and B&B falling short of the mark.
The CBS soaps have been called onto the carpet for only doing the ‘bare minimum’ when it comes to diversity and representation of women of color, bringing an important and timely issue to the forefront during Black History month as TV Source Magazine writer, Ashley Dionne, asked, “Does CBS Daytime Have a Woman of Color Problem?” in her recent opinion piece. The suggestion of failings in this regard are not new, and were frequently and outspokenly addressed by the former Y&R actress who played Drucilla Winters. As Soaps.com reported at the time, Victoria Rowell launched a lawsuit against Sony/CBS citing racial discrimination back in February 2016.
In her article, Dionne put The Bold and the Beautiful at the ‘bottom of the list’, historically, for representation of people of color, noting that it’s especially galling given that it takes place in a diverse city like Los Angeles. Of Dayzee and Maya, she notes, “If you’re keeping score at home, the first black woman showed up as a transient and the second showed up as an ex-con.” Dionne further slammed the stereotypes and sexism viewers are seeing on The Young and the Restless with the Lily and Hilary characters. She observes, “Lily Ashby has become synonymous with nothing more than being Cane’s wife,” and laments that Hilary has become ‘the town dumping ground’. At a time when women of color are depicted as smart, strong, equals in a film such as Marvel’s Black Panther, Dionne notes, “Both Lily and Hilary are written as if to say as a woman of color, you can only climb so high before you either plateau or get knocked down to the ground.”
Many of Dionne’s frustrations and observations resonate with CBS daytime viewers and Soaps.com readers, who often express similar opinions on social media. Let your voice be heard and feel free to share your opinion on the topic.
— Cher M. (@jamdownrocks) December 3, 2017
The Hilary bashing hour is tired. She's everyone's punching bag #YR
— Stephanie. (@qsteph) August 18, 2017
Photo credit: Howard Wise/JPI
– Candace Young