When it comes to television and film, it’s important for us as a community to feel seen both on and off-screen. With Quinta Brunson’s skyrocket-rating Abbott Elementary, the former Buzzfeed star is using her platform to ensure that her community, especially in her hometown of Philadelphia, feels properly represented from the teachers down to the students.
In a recent tweet by actress and comedian Janelle James, who plays principal Ava Coleman in Abbott Elementary, the cast is shown posing for a flick to promote the new episode streaming on Hulu. Though fans were excited for another night of side-holding, knee-slapping dry humor, certain Twitter users couldn’t help but notice one thing in particular. There was a young Black girl in the episode who allowed many audience members to feel represented – a Muslim Black student with a hijab.
“A young Black Muslim girl in hijab! We love to see it,” Twitter user Imani Bashir tweeted in excitement. Another user by the handle @Akitron thanked Brunson for her ability to represent the Black Muslim community in Abbott aside from the stereotypical demonstration of a single hijab with no color variation. “Big thank u to @quintabrunsonfor putting this little Muslim kid in the starter presewn hijab in different colours, this is true life and I love 2 see it,” they tweeted.
Take a look at more fan reactions below!
Brunson’s Abbott Elementary has been making waves across the sitcom world with her half-hour, single-camera brainchild. The mockumentary follows Janine Teagues, a second-grade elementary school teacher in Philly, as she navigates through the underfunded school while trying to positively change lives one student at a time.
“The way she cared for her students beyond just teaching them how to read, she became so many different jobs and roles,” Brunson recalled in an interview with ESSENCE about being inspired by her mother’s own 40-year career as a teacher in the Philadelphia school district. “That really is what inspired me to go there, because I just felt that it was such a rich world that hadn’t really been tapped into yet.”
According to Deadline, the second episode of Abbott, which premiered on January 4, 2022, has amassed nearly 9.0 million total viewers, making the episode “ABC’s strongest comedy telecast of new or returning series in nearly two years, since the April 8 2020 series finale of Modern Family.” Alongside Brunson and James, the sitcom also stars Chris Perfetti, Lisa Ann Walter, Sheryl Lee Ralph, and Everybody Hates Chris‘ own Tyler James Williams.
Abbott Elementary airs Tuesdays at 9:00 ET/8:00 PM Central on ABC.