Note: this article contains coarse language that may offend some readers.
HBO is under fire for picking up a new drama called “Confederate.”
“Confederate” is the next project that “Game of Thrones” producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss are rolling out.
In “Confederate,” the South has successfully seceded from the Union and slavery is legal. “Confederate” focuses on the events following a Third American Civil War.
Entertainment Tonight shared a synopsis of the upcoming series:
“The story follows a broad swath of characters on both sides of the Mason-Dixon Demilitarized Zone — freedom fighters, slave hunters, politicians, abolitionists, journalists, the executives of a slave-holding conglomerate and the families of people in their thrall.”
It’s not clear when the series will be released, but “Game of Thrones” is HBO’s most-watched drama of all time.
As for “Confederate,” there is a lot of backlash to the idea, and some people are even canceling their HBO subscription because of the news:
evryone is like “im gonna cancel HBO now!” You do realize the show is gonna be more about ending slavery then perpetrating it? #Confederate
— Jasmine (@jazzy_mon13) July 20, 2017
— Carol M Nowak Ⓥ (@CarolMNowak) July 21, 2017
— Kelsey (@midwesting) July 20, 2017
— SophiaL (@SophiaLamar1) July 20, 2017
— Kellee Terrell (@kelleent) July 19, 2017
— Mama Michonne (@fasoff) July 20, 2017
And some think that the show idea is supportive of slavery:
Good morning. Some thoughts on why a show “reimagining” modern day slavery is a NO from Black Twitter. Talking to you HBO. https://t.co/JXcJ5Jk1vI
— ReBecca Theodore (@FilmFatale_NYC) July 20, 2017
I’m canceling HBO. A show called “Confederate” about what if slavery never ended. How about show of The Black Wallstreet? #confederatehbo
— C.W. (@C3POCW) July 20, 2017
Really @HBO an entire show about slavery never ending- who in the boardroom thought this was a good idea, why not make the slaves take over
— Denzel blackman (@bigDblackman) July 21, 2017
— Amber (@AmberQ426) July 20, 2017
Benioff responded to the backlash in an interview with Vulture.
After being asked about the racial concerns of having such a show in the works, he said:
We were very hyper-aware of the difference between a show with a fictional history and a fictional world, and a show that’s an alternate history of this world. We know that the elements in play in a show like Confederate are much more raw, much more real, and people come into them much more sensitive and more invested, than they do with a story about a place called Westeros, which none of them had ever heard of before they read the books or watched the show.
We know they are different things, and they need to be dealt with in very, very different ways. And we plan, all of us I think, to approach Confederate in a much different spirit, by necessity, than we would approach a show named Game of Thrones.
In addition, Nichelle Tramble Spellman and Malcolm Spellman, who are both African-American, are executive producers and writers for “Confederate.” So the critical response seems a bit more like selective outrage in this case.
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