Lena Waithe Makes History at the Emmys

Lena Waithe express
Photo: Steve Granitz/WireImage
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Writer for Netflix series, Master of None, Lena Waithe, has made history by becoming the first black woman to win an Emmy Award for comedy writing.

The Thanksgiving episode was co-written with Aziz Ansari and focuses on the backstory of Waithe’s character Denise as a black woman coming to terms with her sexuality. It is based on Waithe’s own experience of coming out.

She thanked the LGBT+ community in her acceptance speech saying, ”I see each and every one of you.

“The things that make us different, those are our superpowers — every day when you walk out the door and put on your imaginary cape and go out there and conquer the world because the world would not be as beautiful as it is if we weren’t in it.

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Waithe says the LGBT+ community should be known for more than coming out stories but when show creators Ansari and Alan Yang asked her about coming out they thought it would make a great episode.

“I just sort of felt like, my story is valid, interesting, and funny,” Waithe told Bustle. “I think in that way we are being revolutionary and saying, ‘Yes, this queer woman of color is getting her own episode of the season,’ and I think that’s a huge thing for other people of color, whether they’re queer or not, to see.”

She spoke about the episode during a GLAAD panel in August, “It’s very black. It’s very female. It’s really gay.

“[And] the cool thing about that is so many people loved it.”

“When a straight, white guy is, like, ‘ ‘Thanksgiving’ was my favourite episode,’ that’s when art is doing its job, when he can look at my character and go, ‘I can see myself in her,’”

She told Buzzfeed News “This will be the one and only time I do this. Let me do it right, let me knock it out the park, because I’m not going to tell that story again.

“I think it’s revolutionary, honestly, because oftentimes queer women of colour are told to sit down and be quiet and not have a voice.

“So the fact that everyone has embraced mine, I think, is definitely a wonderful step in the right direction.”

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