ESSENCE Magazine gets a special shout out as Chris Brown channels a young, egotistical rapper.

Mar, 30, 2017

It is not often that we here at ESSENCE get to report on ourselves, but Wednesday’s episode of Black-ish featured a shoutout that has us tooting our horn!

The episode explored Black representation in the media when Dre’s (Anthony Anderson) advertising agency has to create a campaign for a new beverage with hip-hop star Rich Youngsta, played by guest star Chris Brown.

In a proposal meeting with Uvo, the beverage company’s team, Dre proposes the idea of working with Rich Youngsta to much fanfare. Their goal is to try introduce Uvo to the lucrative urban market. 

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“White people trust me to tell them about Black people and what they want,” Dre says.

However, none of Uvo’s white executives, nor Dre’s white co-workers know who Rich Youngsta is. That doesn’t stop Charlie (Deon Cole), Dre’s only Black co-worker, from losing his mind over meeting the young rapper.

Dre’s white co-workers only then realize Rich Youngsta is the real deal when Charlie asks Rich Youngsta for a photo “for the gram."

“Oh, okay everyone, he’s legit,” one white co-worker says. “Charlie’s Instagram only features people that have been on the cover of ESSENCE.”

“The Magazine,” he whispers to emphasize that it’s a big deal. 

Now we don’t know if Rich Youngsta would ever make our cover, but Brown’s appearance on the episode was mixed with the humor and social commentary often associated with the hit ABC show. Tensions rise when Dre’s wife Bow (Tracee Ellis Ross) and mother Ruby (Jenifer Lewis) find that Dre is using negative stereotypes to push his campaign.

But it seems that the mere appearance of Chris Brown, not necessarily his performance, is receiving mixed reviews.

Did you catch the episode?