By Polo Munoz, Managing Editor/Publisher
TV continues to create and expand the beauty and complexity of storytelling. It continues not only to entertain but in some cases, to also make us think and consider the fate of others, to empathize. The litmus test of society is how it treats its most disadvantaged and vulnerable; this season of “Superstore” reminds us that we are failing that test, and also placing ourselves in danger.
The first episode of Season 5 of “Superstore” gives us a glimpse of what happens to those left behind after an ICE raid happens in a place of business and there is also a secondary story of “Glen,” the robot assigned to the store, and could be the one who begins the process to the “Singularity.”
The episode gives us a glimpse a much more serious season coming that explores current issues in the mind of all. Mateo, who was discovered as an undocumented immigrant through his relationship with the local district manager, was detained in a raid and is now in an ICE detention camp. The beauty of this episode is that although it demonstrates fear, it also demonstrates compassion and action.
The beauty of the episode is that it not only informs us on what can be done, but on who is being detained and how they are being treated through the eyes of Mateo and his spirit. As shows are tackling the constant barrage of confusion and hate experienced by communities of color it is making an effort to bring critical awareness to their audience.
It is a risk for shows to get political, but the government and public affairs of the country are stories that are compelling and affect all of us, entertainment is constantly used to distract and relax people, take them away from the problem of their day, but if that distraction has disastrous consequences media can present the opportunity to reconnect with contemporary issues, challenges and opportunities to reconnect with the reality of the world.
This is where creators of color, who are closes to those that are being affected by the moral malfeasance that has infected public servants and many in the public are able to bring the story to masses and make people feel the pain those who are targeted suffer. These folks, like America Ferrera, with one rating point can bring this concern to over 1.15 million households, and that is powerful.