to brandi, debbie, nina, & jordan

to brandi, debbie, nina, & jordan

When it comes to who my favorite actresses are, Nia Long is definitely in that number. I’ve admired her from a young age, as seen by the characters I’ve listed in the title. She always seems to bring a sense of realness to her characters that make them easy to watch and relatable. Of course, when I was younger I just thought she was super pretty and I basically wanted to be her when I got older. I also admired the level of confidence that each of her characters seemed to posses.

“I want to go to college before I get married and there ain’t no guarantee that I’m gonna marry you!”

First up is Brandi from Boyz N The Hood, a true classic and although her role in this film was small, she certainly made an impact. The first impression that I got from Brandi was that she didn’t play that with anybody, especially Tre. For much of the film, she stuck to her guns about waiting until marriage and was very serious about going to college. At the end of the film, it was revealed that she enrolled at Spelman College so I guess you can see how sis influenced me.

“All these niggas around here might be scared of you but I’m not.”

Next up is Debbie from Friday. Okay, confession: I didn’t watch Friday for the first time until they added it to Netflix back in December. I know, I know, I should be ashamed of myself but when it comes to watching movies, I prefer to watch them uncensored (not the TV versions that BET and VH1 play) and I like to be able to actually understand the jokes that would’ve gone over my head had I watched it when I was younger. Anyway, I loved Nia’s character on Friday because she had calm and cool confidence that made her so likable. She was an easy character to love and I just never thought I’d love a plot with her and Ice Cube as love interests but it actually brings me so much joy lol. What makes her character so important to me is the way she stood up for her sister at the end of the film. Throughout the movie, she seemed a little passive of the situation but I love that she stepped in at the ned with something to say. I’m very protective of my sisters of all kinds so I really felt that scene.

“To the woman who helped me reach my level.

She knows who she is.”

Third and probably my favorite Nia Long character of all time of Nina Mosely from Love Jones. From the moment that Nina rebuffed Darius for embarrassing her after “A Blues for Nina,” I fell in love with the character. Like Brandi, she didn’t play with him and she kept a calm confidence that made her so desirable to Darius in the first place. I also just really love this film and not because it’s supposedly “the best love story of all time” because it’s not. I love this film for how realistic the characters are with their conversations (Nina and Josie’s conversation after Nina and Darius’ first date will always be my favorite scene) and how crazy true it could all be. From the two main characters taking advice from their friends who clearly have no idea what they’re even talking about to the whole “we’re just kickin’ it” understanding despite not actually having a conversation about it in the first place. It all just hits really close to home and describes more than half of the situationships out there. I also love that there wasn’t a huge happy ending. Yes, the kissed and made up and said I love you but there was no guarantee that they’d last (Nina even brings it up), especially with them living so far away from each other. Another thing I love about this movie is that Nina was about her business and her career really took off near the end. Goals!

Harper: “Jordan Armstrong. She’s already running things, ain’t she?”

Murch: “You should not be surprised. She’s the only one more driven than you are.”

Last but certainly not least is Jordan Armstrong from The Best Man. I loved this character growing up so much literally because she was everything I wanted to be: fine and successful in her own right. Not only was she working in media but she was also super blunt and honest with Harper, which I loved. When Harper tried to blame for all the things that happened to him near the end of the film, she was quick to put him in check and open his eyes to see that the issues in life were popping up because he himself aired his dirty laundry for the world to see. Not only was she honest about that but she was also very straightforward when it came to inviting Harper over in the first place and I admired that then for so many reasons and I still do. One gets what she goes after, period!

Now as you can see there’s one common thing that each of Nia’s characters has in common and that’s confidence. I loved it when I was younger and I still do. Seeing a black woman have the courage to say what she wants when she wants it and doesn’t care about who she’s saying it to meant everything to me when I was younger. So here’s to being bold like Brandi, Debbie, Nina, and Jordan in 2019.


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