Review: Trigger Warning

Jimmy Athey reviews the thought provoking Trigger Warning which is now available on Netflix

Jimmy Athey
25th February 2019
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The Netflix feature of playing a trailer on the homepage is genius. I know that might sound silly, but the shows I may have missed due to that feature not being implemented is frightening.

Netflix docuseries’ have become immensely popular and shows like Dark Tourist benefit from a trailer being almost forced upon you as soon as you launch Netflix. Trigger Warning with Killer Mike is no different, and Killer Mike’s powerful statement – “anything that doesn’t help black people needs to be burnt the fuck down now” – instantly had me hooked.

Killer Mike in this show aims to create a more equal society for black people using very controversial and outside-the-box methods. Even though he is a rapper, I am more of a fan of his social and political work, including supporting Sanders and Corbyn in their respective campaigns, and passionately arguing black gun ownership on Real Time with Bill Maher (his arguments are hard to disagree with, but that’s another discussion altogether). Trigger Warning is his most daring stunt yet. It opens with an episode of trying to “live black”; going three days in the black economy, only eating and using black sourced things. How challenging that can be is shocking, and even though it may be exaggerated, the message is still clear: this is bad.

And it doesn’t stop there. One of my personal favourite endeavours (of possibly anyone ever) is commercialising the Crips. The Crips are a gang in America who are known around the world for the violence and killing they have caused. But what Killer Mike emphasises is their brotherhood; they are a community and it brings young black men together, so creating a business out of them can make them steer away from the public image they have gained over the years. It’s a genius idea, and something that I hope is genuine.

The cynics could label Killer Mike as needlessly divisive, and that he only cares about the black community. But the current climate shows bad news for minorities, and he is trying to change the lives of the people he connects with in a positive way. I love dark humour, and many of the jokes come from dangerous subjects, like when Killer Mike refuses a lap dance from an Asian stripper because she isn’t black. Killer Mike’s immense dedication to the black community is inspiring, even going so far as to make educational porn videos and schooling a white ginger kid on white privilege. Sure, its controversial, but the lengths he’s gone to for a more equal world is brave and exciting, and I fully support whatever he does next. So, crack open your Crip-a-Cola and settle in for something truly unique.

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