A viral video has sparked a combination of laughter and outrage amongst black women. While some viewers of the YouTube video "Sh*t Black Girls Say" find it hilarious, others are offended by its portrayal of African American females.
The video, featuring comedian Billy Sorrells, was posted less than two weeks ago and already has over 1.3 million viewers. Sorrells said he had no idea the video would be so successful or cause any controversy.
"We were just trying to amuse ourselves," he told the Daily News. "We didn't expect it to be viral."
But director Elijah Griffin said although he had no intention of offending anyone, it is a sign of the video's success.
"When your work is provocative it will offend others. We don't mean any harm," he told the news outlet. "It's not a social commentary on how real life is."
The video, which portrays Sorrells dressed in drag listing "popular" black female sayings, is a spoof of the original "Sh*t Girls Say," which has over 7 million views and has spawned other spinoffs like "Sh*t Black Gays Say" and "Sh*t Asian Girls Say." Some of its highlights, and potentially offensive aspects, are Griffin's character Peaches' line "pack your Playstation and get out," and patting an itchy weave.
"While those images are funny to those of us who are well-educated, some young people don't know how to filter the message," Benita Miller, founder of The Brooklyn Young Mothers' Collective, told the Daily News.
But other women said the exact opposite.
"As a board-certified black woman, I am just going to go ahead and say I think Billy Sorells' "Shit Black Girls Say" is funny," Jezebel writer Dodai Stewart said. "Both 'duh-lete' and 'it is so hot in here' are in my repertoire. I have not yet had the good fortune to say, 'pack your PlayStation and get out,' but maybe someday!"
Despite the mixed reactions, Griffin stands by the video's comedic intent.
"To all those people offended out there--it is a simple joke," he told the Daily News. "It's made for people who are easy going."