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Issa Rae is Ready to Tackle Toxic Masculinity in Season 3 of ‘Insecure’

By JaVonni Brustow / Published on Monday, 11 Jun 2018 15:19 PM / No Comments
Photo credit: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

Issa Rae’s 5 years into the production of her hit series Insecure and has been touching on a number of black millenial topics. For Season 3, she says in an interview with Hollywood Reporter that she’s looking to tackle toxic black masculinity. There has been a lot of talk about toxic masculinity in recent years in regards to the notion that men should apologize for being men resulting to the feminization of men. There is however an argument here in the sense that toxic masculinity is what leads men to feel the need to live up to the stereotypes of hyper-aggression, fist fights, unhealthy sexual proclivities and competition. As with everything, moderation is key. We all can’t be Genghis Khan but wanting your name to carry on is understandable. Then there is toxic black masculinity which could be described as say, the persona of 50 Cent. While in bankruptcy court, even he admitted that he portrays an image and that it isn’t real, yet these are the expectations placed on black men.

Now that I’m off of my soap box, back to Issa. “I love Black masculinity as it relates to Black women,” she said. “I think that’s something interesting that we haven’t gotten a chance to explore yet — and specifically toxic male Black masculinity as it relates to black women. I’m trying to find a way to explore that and get a rounded storyline that isn’t preachy.”


“Adulting” is the key word for this season. “This season is about adulting in a new way. I think we’ve watched our characters really fumble and f–k up — and in some ways in your 20s you are allowed that — but this season is about not acting like you’re naive anymore or that you don’t know better,” she explained. “So it is about, what does it look like to know better and to do better?”

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Issa is a different type of actress because for those who don’t realize it, she wrote the entire damn show of Insecure. This is literally about her life. She does more than just show up for filming and runs off to go slut off camera as Jennifer Lewis described her time off camera and stage. I’m sure I wasn’t supposed to say that but if life has shown us anything it’s that an idle mind leads to that type of behavior. People who are busy doing things such as producing, they’re less likely to do such things.

“As a creator, you think you’re just going to create, but there are so many moving parts and so many business aspects,” she explained. “So having to be business-minded while trying to be creative and not care what is going to sell is a lot. Sometimes I want to be in actor mode, not producer mode, or vice versa.”

She did however get a break from working behind the camera in the new coming of age film Hate U Give alongside Common where she’s … just… acting, a big change for her.

“I was like, ‘Whoa, I don’t have to be here after my scene is done? I can just leave? I don’t have anything to do with the decisions? I have time in my trailer to just chill until they need me?’ That was just crazy to me [but also] really cool and made me want to do that again,” Rae said. She’ll also be in the new comedy Little alongside Blackish star Marsai Martin so she’ll finally get a chance to recharge in her downtime and keep her creativity going.

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We’re happy to see Issa tackling new subjects and ones by her own admission aren’t necessarily always popular, which makes her genuine in her craft. Season 3 of Insecure will be airing August 12th on HBO.

About JaVonni Brustow

Urban Conservative, Principal at VM3 Media, Co-Editor-in-Chief of and, Javonni Brustow is a Communications and Media Consultant in Washington, DC with a decade of experience as a seasoned concert producer, marketing expert and brand management expert with multiple news publications. He can be heard LIVE Sundays at 3pm on Popglitz Radio and is a regular on the 'Did She Say That' Breitbart Radio Show with Sonnie Johnson. Inquiries: