What I’m Watching: Grown-ish

I absolutely love Black-ish. It’s one of the best shows on TV right now. It reminds me of the Cosby Show but less wholesome; more real. When it was announced that the oldest character, the daughter Zoe, was getting a spin-off about her adventures in college, I was not enthused. Yara Shahidi (the actress that plays Zoe) is great on Black-ish, playing the oldest sibling who is too cool for everyone. She’s self-absorbed, popular, fashionable, a little shallow with hints of depth. I wasn’t sure that Yara could carry a show on her own. She has proven me wrong. She has proven the masses wrong because Grown-ish has already been renewed for a second season.


I am completely and thoroughly addicted to this show. I don’t even care that I’m not the target audience. I went to college. I remember what it was like (kinda). After the first couple of episodes aired, there were a lot of think pieces comparing Grown-ish to A Different World (my generation’s Grown-ish).


I didn’t read the majority of them because in my opinion, think pieces are nothing but click-bait. I did start reading one, thanks to stumbling upon a twitter convo about it, then stopped. This author said that Grown-ish tackles issues that A Different World never did. That A Different World stayed away from controversial issues. That the show was fluff. Ummm excuse me?!?!?! They had episodes about AIDS, homelessness, date rape, the crack epidemic, racism, domestic violence, gun violence, Rodney King verdict, voting, apartheid, the environment…shall I go on?  What show did this “author” watch?!!? Give me a freaking break! This is why think pieces are nothing but stink pieces. I don’t pay them any attention anymore. Click. Bait.

A Different World and Grown-ish are set in two different centuries. Two different college environments – HBCU vs PWI. But both shows did and are doing a damn good job of portraying what it’s like to be a not quite adult in a grown ass world. The cast is diverse and amazing. It’s funny while being socially aware. The adults on the show are in the background. This is truly a show focused on the college students.

I suggest you check it out. Leave your comparisons to A Different World at the door. It serves no purpose. I love A Different World. I still watch it now when episodes are on TVOne. I still laugh. I still love the wedding episode. That scene where Whitney’s mother yells at Dwayne Wayne: “Die! Just die!” will never NOT be funny. A Different World served it’s purpose for a generation of college students during that time and I think Grown-ish is successfully doing the same for the current generation.

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