Who is Generation Flex?
Genration Flex is Will Smith.
Vivica A. Fox
The Wayans Brother
Kennan Ivory Wayans
Mary J. Bloge
Samuel L. Jackson
My Brother and Me??
Gullah Gullah Island??
C. Bear and Jamal?
Out All Night?
Kid-N-Play: The cartoon.
The cartoon of Kid-N-Play?
This was that generation
This was the generation that I grew up on. I would say maybe ten years…1986-1996 of just pure bosshood.
uninterrupted, grandiose negritude.
Not really a generation in the sense of age- because they were frozen in time. They were a wave of freedom; they were a fresh voice in a new era; they were here and they were real. They were Generation FleX. They were The Wayans Brothers and Grant Hill. They were Lion King and Mary J. Blige. Generation FleX were those 20-30’s somethings who were not afraid to conquer the world; to live freely and chase their dreams. But that wasn’t what made this generation special; this generation, were the children of Malcolm X.
These were X’s kids.
These were the Children of X,
Birth by a fiery revolution,
Generation FleX was unleased.
They took their place in history by making it about them, rooting themselves in projects that were seeped in Blackness, proudly wearing Malcolm X or HBCU gear on their television sitcoms; sitcoms that they starred in, and executive produced. In there 20’s.
They were bosses.
They created their own rules; walking paths unchartered, while paying respect to those who had come before them: Tina Turner. Eartha Kitt. Red Foxx. Richard Pryor. Diahnn Carol. Billie D. Williams. Beverly Johnson.
They were the generation that made Black schools cool. With each semester at Hillman University, they induced me into a love affair with the HBCU.
They brought Detroit, and Philly, and Brooklyn to me. They showed me that a Black college graduate could leave Howard University, found her own magazine and, justsohappen to live across the street from her best friend who was the partner of a law firm by the age of 26. They were vice-presidents of advertising firms. They were college graduates. And well versed on African art. And unabashed ambassadors of soul. When Mary opened her mouth, she reminded you that Aretha, and Natalie, and Chaka, and Mahalia had once occupied this space – but it was now her time to reign supreme. And Baby…did she reign.
This was the generation that gave us Kid-N-Play and TLC; the young, Black, and Fly.
They were the last real class of the Josephine Baker, Gregory Hines, Lena Horne, Pearl Bailey, and Dorothy Dandridge School of the Triple Threat. Jasmine Guy. Tisha Campbell. Tachina Arnold. They were our big brothers and extended families. They were Malcolm Jamal Warner and Flex Alexander and Lorenz Tate and EnVogue. Love Jones. Nia Long and Larenz Tate: the closest thing to a real life Ruby Dee and Ossie Davis.
I got a thing for Tisha Campbell.
Art – Xavier Payne
“Ain’t Gone Hurt Nobody” – Kid-N-Play
“A Different World” If I Shall Die Before I Wake: Jasmine Guy, Kadeem Hardison, Tisha Campbell, Debbie Allen, Whoopi Goldberg, Bill Cosby.
“Malcolm X” by Spike Lee from the film Malcolm X.
The concept of Malcolm’s kids was inspired by an excerpt I read in Manning Marable’s Malxolm X. He wrote about how Malcolm X was in part, a major force in the early 90’s as history began to write about him differently.