The 5 Scariest Black Movie Villains (According to Shawn)

Brothas and sistas, today I’m going to share with you the top five scariest niggas in Hollywood films. 

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Honorable Mention: "Georgina" (Betty Gabriel), Get Out. Every time this sista appeared I got scared as shit. She had to be wearing the white Curry nurse shoes because her sneak up creep game was on swole. I love my mama with all my aorta, left and right ventricle, but if I would have seen that crazy maid out on the street, after hitting her, I would’ve put the car in reverse, hit her again and then peeled out on her devilish soul. Straight up.

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5. "Mr. Simms" (Clarence Williams III), Tales from the Hood. Look, I was already scared of this negro when he played Prince’s father in Purple Rain, but in Tales from the Hood? NIIIIIGAAAAAAAAAAAAHHH!!!??? Voodoo dolls, a serpent tongue coming out of gap teeth, AND him having a casket on display in his living room? He was like the Ghost of Negro Past showing you all of your future fears.

4. "The Puppet Master," The Wiz. The muthafucka had his own creepy theme music. “Booo di-boo di-boooo dip” Bitch, you sang the song didn’t you? This dude would just appear out of nowhere. Ole dusty-ass capri-pants-and dirty-Timberland-ass nigrah with a tray of death ready to kill niggas. When they met Dorothy and the gang in the subway and those orange bouncy thangs blew up, I was scared as fuck. “Boo di booo dip booo dip!”

3. "Brandi" (Lynn Whitfield), A Thin Line Between Love and Hate. “Crazy women have the best p****” – Something every young black boy’s crazy uncle says. Look, Lynn Whitfield is FINE, but she scared the shit out of me in this movie. Michael Myers? Freddy? Chucky? Punk shit because ain't NOTHING scarier than an educated, “I-N-D-E-P-E-N-D-E-N-T if you know what I mean” sista who got her heart broken. She stabbed her own birthday cake and beat her own face?? BREH!!!! As Martin Lawrence said in his standup, “CRAAAAAZZY. DERRAAAAAAANGED!”

2. "Candyman" (Tony Todd), Candyman. First off, this movie was racist as fuck and played into white people’s fears. A big Black man from Chicago chasing white women. If THAT’S not the most “1915 Birth of a Nation” BS I’ve ever seen. Then they had the audacity to give this n**ga a hook and a chest full of killer bees? It’s like he was a mutant Wu-Tang member or something. AND he lived in Cabrini Greens rocking a Mink?

1. The Pigmy Doll, Trilogy of Terror. As a little boy, I watched this bullshit with my older sister and didn’t sleep for weeks. Lights on woke as a Hotep after reading The Isis Papers & seeing The Matrix. This little nigga was wilder than Bushwick Bill gone off Everclear. He chased that white woman all through the apartment screaming and shit. He couldn’t be drowned or smothered. She put his ass in the stove and he busted out. Just typing and thinking of dude made a squirt of pee shoot out of my loins. I once shared my fear of this movie to an ex-girlfriend and the heffa thought it would be funny to buy me a look-a-like doll and give it to me for Christmas...she got called ALLLLLLLLLLL out her name. I put Jesus on the shelf and that doll in the incinerator that day. I still ignore her Facebook friend requests.

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Shawn William is lyrically handsome & probably much taller than ya baby's father.  Addicted to Blistex, French toast & drama. Once got busy in a Burger King bathroom.

Favorite movie quote: "Shorty can't eat no books, dog." More Shawn: Web | Twitter | Facebook

Mental Health Monday #8: Aja Naomi King's Self-Doubt, Muppets with Autism, and Navigating Mental Breakdowns

Oh, hey. Welcome to Spring. In case you were thinking about starting the week off on a mediocre note, meet Sidney Keys III, an eleven-year-old avid reader who started a book club for Black boys to celebrate their love of reading and focus on Black literature. He called it Books N Bros, naturally. There's still time to get your life together. 

THIS WEEK'S GOODNESS

Aja Naomi King, who plays Michaela on ABC's How To Get Away With Murder, gave a powerful, memorable speech about self-doubt, strength, and survival at the ESSENCE Black Women in Hollywood Awards Gala. She preached a good sermon. Behold:

"B. Smith's husband, Dan Gasby, speaks about living with wife's Alzheimer's" by Jenny Drabble [Winston-Salem Journal]

"Smith, 67, began suffering from memory problems years before her diagnosis, her husband said. She once froze for several seconds while being interviewed on the “Today Show,” unprecedented for the experienced star, prompting a doctor’s visit.

Doctors gave Smith a prescription for anti-depressants; later tests revealed Smith had early onset Alzheimer’s."

"Black, 30, and Finally in Therapy" by Danielle Butler [Very Smart Brothas]

"It wasn’t until I had a late night discussion with a close friend where he tearfully revealed he’d seen a therapist and had been diagnosed with depression, that I entertained perhaps seeking professional help for my mental well being. Of course I didn’t think that I was as sick as my friend, when he asked if his diagnosis surprised me I responded in typical “Of course I knew, nigga I’m glad you caught up” Danielle fashion. “Oh yeah, of course not, I had always said you would benefit from therapy, with what you’ve been through? Of course a diagnosis of depression makes sense. I’m proud of you for finally taking care of yourself.”"

"With Joyful Photos, a 19-Year-Old Artist Confronts Media Bias Against Black Male Teens" by Antwaun Sargent [VICE]

"The revelation lead Loftin to create HOODED, a photo and video project that deconstructs stereotypes of black teenage boys. In the project's images, Four White Teens and Four Black Teens, Loftin displays against poppy backdrops two screen grabs of google images results, each displaying visually the staggering differences in search results. HOODED focuses primarily on the hoodie, an article of clothing which, when it's associated with the black male body, is tied to white racial fantasies of black males as "thugs" and "super predators," and assumptions that they are dangerous."

"Patton Oswalt Explains How Pop Culture Gets Grieving All Wrong" by Ari Shapiro [NPR]

"One thing that I've learned since what happened to me happened is: You don't know the kind of pain and loss other people may have gone through — even close friends and acquaintances. ... In really awful science fiction terms it is like putting on the sunglasses in They Live and then seeing the world for what it really is. Do you know what I mean? Obviously I knew there was loss and death and depression, but you can only sympathize so far until it directly happens to you."

Youtuber Kymara opened up about her mental breakdown, what caused it, and how she's recovered from that low moment.

"New Baltimore wellness center works to reduce stigma of mental illness" by Andrea K. McDaniels [Baltimore Sun]

"Simon Life and Wellness also offers an art therapy room, music therapy and yoga classes. Adult clients can take healthy-cooking classes and children learn to make YouTube videos. There is a game room where kids can play foosball and board games.

The different activities create opportunities to address mental illness in ways that go beyond just talking, Simon said."

"Self-Care + Entrepreneurship" [Crown of Courage]

"Cry Baby Cry: I used to shed buffalo sized tears from the insults, the stress, and the let downs that came with running my own organization. Not even going to lie, I tried to act like it didn’t phase me. I tricked myself into believing that I needed to be tough if I was going to make it in this dog-eat-dog world. I used to be ashamed to cry. It made me feel weak. My blessing came when I realized crying is not a weakness. It is a release. You can only hold so much negativity and at some point you just have to release it. So, cry your big heart out. I promise it is okay."

photo: AP

photo: AP

"A Muppet with autism to be welcomed soon on 'Sesame Street'" by Frazier Moore [Associated Press]

"Developing Julia and all the other components of this campaign has required years of consultation with organizations, experts and families within the autism community, according to Jeanette Betancourt, Sesame Workshop's senior vice president of U.S. Social Impact.

"In the U.S., one in 68 children is diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder," she says. "We wanted to promote a better understanding and reduce the stigma often found around these children. We're modeling the way both children and adults can look at autism from a strength-based perspective: finding things that all children share.""

Our most recent mental health-centered episode, "You Good, Man?" (featuring Nickolas Gaines).

Are you a Black mental health professional? Do you do yoga, reiki, massage therapy, herbology, bootcamps, or crystal work? Alex is building a database of Black wellness professionals and practitioners. Be a pal and submit your info to be included in the directory.

Have a mental health-related article, video, event, or resource we should know about? Send it our way!

Mental Health Monday #7: Self-Care Tips, Chrissy Teigen's Postpartum Depression, and Inheriting Trauma from Slavery

Tank and the Bangas, winners of NPR's Tiny Desk Contest and bringers of joy.

Tank and the Bangas, winners of NPR's Tiny Desk Contest and bringers of joy.

Greetings.

Welcome to another edition of Mental Health Monday. As usual, we've got some awesome content to inspire, inform, and assist you on your voyage to emotional and mental wellness. We're tardy to the Tank and the Bangas party, but we're currently pressed to become her BFF and be into everything she's into because where have they been all our lives? They recently won NPR's Tiny Desk contest, and gained millions of new admirers in the process. Add us to the list. Go forth and be joyous. 

THIS WEEK'S GOODNESS

"Michelle Obama surprises D.C. students, talks struggles and life goals for two hours" by Perry Stein [Washington Post]

"At one point, a student told Obama of her struggles living in a shelter, and Obama walked the student through steps she could take to achieve her goals. Another student, Williams, told the former first lady she wants to be an anesthesiologist.

“She told me not to let anything get in the way, and she said don’t go back and help everyone until you get where you want to be,” said Williams, who has a 2-year-old son.

Fuller said one student, 18-year-old Vonte Walker, had never talked about his ambitions in school. Since Obama’s visit, he’s been telling the staff of his college plans."

"101 Self-Care Suggestions for When It All Feels Like Too Much" by Annie Wright [The Mighty]

"So if you or someone you love is going through one of these tough times right now, a time where it all just feels like too much, I want to offer up 101 suggestions for self-care to help you or your loved one get through this time.

1. Have a good, long, body-shaking cry.

2. Call a trusted friend or family member and talk it out."

"Trauma From Slavery Can Actually Be Passed Down Through Your Genes" by Lincoln Blades [Teen Vogue]

"Dr. Rachel Yehuda, professor of psychiatry at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, has conducted a depth of research into epigenetics and the intergenerational transmission of trauma. In layman's terms, she is researching how serious incidents of trauma (i.e. slavery, holocaust, etc.) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can be passed down through generations in shared family genes. Her research has revealed that when people experience trauma, it changes their genes in a very specific and noticeable way, so when those people have children and their genes are passed down to their children, the children also inherit the genes affected by trauma."

"Meet Jeff, Lauren and Lloyd, three different people who share one common experience—their lives have been transformed by speaking up for mental health. The film provides a glimpse into their lives and their diagnoses—which include bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, depression and anxiety—ultimately weaving together a story about how speaking up is key to living well. Beyond Silence, directed by Shaul Schwarz and executive produced by Demi Lovato, celebrates the strength, perseverance and dedication of these courageous individuals determined to break through the silence often associated with mental illness and help others along the way."

Watch Beyond Silence here.

"Chrissy Teigen Opens Up for the First Time About Her Postpartum Depression" by Chrissy Teigen [Glamour]

"I went back to work on Lip Sync Battle in August, when Luna was four months. The show treated me incredibly well—they put a nursery in my dressing room and blew up photos of Luna and John and my family for my wall. When Luna was on set, they lowered the noise levels. They turned down the air so she wouldn’t be cold. Only the most gentle knocking on the door. Pump breaks. I mean, there was no better place to get to go back to work to.

But I was different than before. Getting out of bed to get to set on time was painful. My lower back throbbed; my ­shoulders—even my wrists—hurt. I didn’t have an appetite. I would go two days without a bite of food, and you know how big of a deal food is for me. One thing that really got me was just how short I was with people."

"When You're 'Too Functional' to Have Your Mental Illness Taken Seriously" by Karen Lowinger [The Mighty]

"I can be dying inside while going through the motions of the day. It’s not difficult for me to know how others expect me to act. Acting fine is a cognitive process. You can probably mention right now how an emotionally stable or “mentally sane” person is supposed to act. It really is simple. A generally accepted lifestyle is one where a person wakes up every day, looks presentable, takes care of stuff that needs to be taken care of, eats and goes to sleep. This can sometimes be done regardless of how you feel inside. To say it’s difficult is an understatement, but it’s not impossible."

Demi Lovato discusses her journey with bipolar disorder. [Be Vocal]

"Getting a diagnosis was kind of a relief. It helped me start to make sense of the harmful things I was doing to cope with what I was experiencing.

Now I had no choice but to move forward and learn how to live with it, so I worked with my health care professional and tried different treatment plans until I found what works for me."

Are you a Black mental health professional? Do you do yoga, reiki, massage therapy, herbology, bootcamps, or crystal work? Alex is building a database of Black wellness professionals and practitioners. Be a pal and submit your info to be included in the directory.

Have a mental health-related article, video, event, or resource we should know about? Send it our way!

Previous Mental Health Monday posts:

Mental Health Monday #6: Virtual Therapy, Curbing Self-Doubt, and Motherhood With Mental Illness

Mental Health Monday: Mindfulness, Soldiers with Autism, and Treating Schizophrenia with Weed

Mental Health Monday: Meditating Kids, Trap Yoga, and Boxers with Bipolar Disorder

Mental Health Monday: Hey, Go Check In On Someone

Mental Health Monday: Stock up on self-care. Winter is here.

Mental Health Monday: Here's to a hateration-free 2017.

Mental Health Reading Lists 1 | 2 | 3

Hear the latest episode. | Contribute to The Extraordinary Negroes | Reach out and say hello.

Join us in NYC Saturday 3/11 for #PodLiveNYC

The lovely ladies of Tea with Queen and J. invited us to come drink, chill, and talk and revel in our collective awesomeness with a bunch of other dope independent podcasters and of our amazing listeners. Also in the building: Inner Hoe Uprising, The Cure, The Girth, Bag Ladiez, We Come From Queens, Brunch & Budget, TK in the AM, Queer WOC, and The Bodega Podcast. It's going to be awesome. AND, the best part is that it's $Free.99 if you RSVP, which you can do right here.

Mental Health Monday #6: Virtual Therapy, Curbing Self-Doubt, and Motherhood with Mental Illness

Happy Monday! Another chance to be less terrible and do the right thing. Or not. Either way, a The bad news is it's not 2020 yet. The good news is Viola Davis's reign of greatness continueth. She gave another mixtape-worthy speech while accepting her Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for Fences last night. And Sir Mahershala Ali went home with the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his work on Moonlight. And after a wacky mix-up, Moonlight won Best Picture, just like the ancestors intended. Anyhow, on to the good shit.

THIS WEEK'S GOODNESS

A while back, Marc Lamont Hill facilitated a discussion on depression among African-Americans with Bassey Ikpi, director of the Siwe Project; Dr. Jeff Gardere, psychologist and author; and Terrie Williams, author of Black Pain: It Just Looks Like We're Not Hurting.

"What virtual therapy means for mental health in the black community" by Kady Phillips [Blavity]

"It's easier to talk to your therapist when you're not in front of them

Similar to having hard conversations via text (because you can't see the person), this experience feels less personal and has been proven to encourage patients to reveal more. In fact, because of this, virtual therapy might just make more of a difference than actual in-person therapy."

"How To Avoid Being Psychologically Destroyed By Your Newsfeed" [Ann Douglas]

"Allow yourself to feel all the feelings

Allow painful emotions to flow through you as opposed to avoiding them (which suppresses positive as well as negative emotions, leaving you feeling emotionally "flat") or dwelling on them (which ties up cognitive resources, leaving you less equipped to solve problems or connect with other people). Remind yourself that feelings come and feelings go -- and you are not your feelings."

"My Worries About Having a Baby as a Woman With Bipolar Disorder" by Crystal Lancaster [The Mighty]

"But I’m so scared. I have been on these pills since I was a teenager. I’m scared to death to simply stop taking them. Will I be able to handle it? Could I cope? I mean, I’ve had a major relapse even when I was on the pills! What happens when I’m off them entirely? It…I don’t know. It seems so unfair. I feel like bipolar disorder makes my life abnormal enough as it is. Is it so wrong to have one thing in my life that is “normal?” So I can at least pretend to be “normal” again? Why should I have to deny myself of one of the things I want most in this world because I developed a mental illness?"

"On Black Masculinity, The Mental Well-Being Of Black Men And 'Fences'" by L. Malik Anderson [Blavity]

"My father often told me as a teenager sometimes I held myself back, like I was in a war with myself. Like Washington’s character I would stare into the void of darkness and got nowhere, never openly facing my anxiety and depression. 

I never asked for therapy because of the stigma around mental health. Instead, I spent all my time in church wrestling away my personal demons. I sat with the complacency of dealing with emotions internally. "

"Steps to Turn Off the Nagging Self-Doubt in Your Head" by Elizabeth Bernstein [Wall Street Journal]

"Create an Imaginary Friend

We’re often nicer to our friends than we are to ourselves. If a friend told you he was telling himself the same irrational things you tell yourself, you’d have no trouble telling him he is wrong.

Imagine that you have a friend who is exactly like you in every respect. Give him a name. Then pretend he is telling himself the same destructive thoughts you tell yourself. How would you refute him? What evidence would you give that his thinking is wrong? Listen carefully to what you are telling your friend. Write it down. Take this to heart."

"Thank You to 'This Is Us' for Portraying a Character With Anxiety" by Monica Drake [The Mighty]

"In Tuesday’s episode, Randall talked about how his adoptive father, Jack, kept his anxiety in check. “Whenever I’d get too in my head, he’d take his hands and put them on both sides of my head and he’d just say, ‘There you go, breathe with me.’ And we’d just sit there, breathing together until it passed.”

He said, “It’s always been like that. Putting the pressure on myself ever since I was a little boy.”"

Do you have a mental health-related story, article, event, or resource we should know about? Send it our way!

Previous Mental Health Mondays:

Mental Health Monday: Mindfulness, Soldiers with Autism, and Treating Schizophrenia with Weed

Mental Health Monday: Meditating Kids, Trap Yoga, and Boxers with Bipolar Disorder

Mental Health Monday: Hey, Go Check In On Someone

Mental Health Monday: Stock up on self-care. Winter is here.

Mental Health Monday: Here's to a hateration-free 2017.

Mental Health Reading Lists 1 | 2 | 3

Hear the latest episode. | Contribute to The Extraordinary Negroes | Reach out and say hello.