I must admit, when I watched the first episode of Ackee and Saltfish, when they were at the tennis courts, I didn’t get it and I didn’t much like it. It didn’t make me want to watch the next episode. I liked the styling, loved the fact that it was written by and starred black women and it was quintessentially about a black experience in England. I felt bad saying this to some friends while in New York, because we’re still at the stage in history where we as black people have a responsibility to support each other’s hustles, especially when it’s a sister doing something relevant and cool. But I’m not shy to admit that I was wrong not to watch the second episode until whiteness told me to. I know I know!!!!! I know. I’m judging myself hard enough because I should know better.
I was on the Dazed and Confused site the other day and saw this article on Cecile Emeke, whose name I’ve been hearing on and off for about a year. I clicked on the article, really enjoyed what she had to say about white supremacy, patriarchy and capitalism and I thought no man, if I knew this girl, we would probably be friends. So I clicked looked up her webseries Ackee and Saltfish again and watched the Lauryn Hill tickets episode and died of joy. I watched it twice it is so good.
The webseries is about two friends, Olivia and Rachel who live in East London (a sure sign that one day we will be friends since I am from East London, South Africa) in the UK and this show is a humourous approach to telling the story of being black and female anywhere in the colonizer/colonized context. This is fresh, honest and very relatable story telling and it is much needed in the world. Thank you Cecile and your team. I’m happy this show is getting love in the UK and the rest of the world. Now go on and puff and pass!