“It’s like poetry on TV,” says Oprah Winfrey of David Makes Man. The show’s principal writer, Tarell Alvin McCraney has to know he’s spun gold but is still taken by surprise. Executive produced by Michael B. Jordan and Oprah Winfrey, the show is about David, a 14-year-old black prodigy torn between two worlds. Played by Akili McDowell, David attends a prestigious magnet school while living in the “Ville,” a hood in South Florida.
DMM takes viewers on a journey filled with moments of humanity, rawness, and the masks worn to navigate between two worlds. Historically, many students at HBCUs (Historically Black Colleges & Universities) can relate. HBCUs are so different from students’ home environment due to the educational programs, bands, events, celebrity visits and more. This change is especially true for Greek fraternity members, who must combine school with structure and community service. The journey to manhood can add yet another layer of growth. Read below to see how all this makes David Makes Man so relatable to HBCU fraternity members.
2DMM Explores the Experience of Black Boyhood
Although David must be strong for his single mother and young trouble-making brother, he is still just a kid himself. He is constantly thrown into new problems. Nevertheless, he must still make very defining choices. Does he stay on course at his magnet school, or hang out with the drug-dealing boys in his neighborhood? Should he imitate the white students at his school or stand out in his blackness? Like the lines of David is truly as resilient as INVICTUS reads… In the fell clutch of circumstance/I have not winced nor cried aloud./Under the bludgeonings of chance/My head is bloody, but unbowed.