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“Black Women Support Each Other”: Yvette Nicole Brown on Keke Palmer Moment

A rose by any other name wouldn’t have been so sweet.

September 13, during the finale of the new NBC show Passwordhost Keke Palmer jumped into the player’s seat with teammate Yvette Nicole Brown and tried to communicate the clue – “Titanic” – with one word: “Rose”.

As Jimmy Fallon, Joel McHale and Chrissy Metz looked on, Palmer said it over and over again, communicating with his eyes and body as much as his words.

Something on Brown’s face said she knew immediately, but how could she? All Palmer gave her was “Rose”. And yet, the community the actress could tell: the connection between the two women was palpable. “Oh, see, I don’t mean to be wrong,” Brown said self-deprecatingly, “but I think that’s…” and her voice trailed off.

As the two continued to work on the clue, Brown told the audience, “Listen, there’s a lot of dark conversation here.” Then finally, self-doubt written all over her face, she revealed her answer: “Titanic.” And the crowd went wild.

Brown, whose second season of the Disney+ show big shots premieres October 12, spoken to Pleasemynews why this moment was so much more than just a fun little game show.

“The funny thing is, I don’t even know how I knew,” she said. Pleasemynews September 22. “I could have said thorn, I could have said Daddy’s Girls. I could have said Betty White. For example, there’s a lot of things “rose” could lead to, but there’s something about the way Keke said “Rose” even the first time around that made me think of “Titanic.” If you look, I say ‘Oh’, then ‘Oh yeah’.”

It was an incredible television moment, but it meant more than that to Brown.

“What I love…about black women [is] it’s literally how black women can communicate with each other. I do not lie. We can communicate across the room, with one eyebrow raised, and the other will know exactly what they are thinking. We can have a whole conversation without ever opening our mouths. And so Keke was literally telling me with his eyes…it was all there.”

Somehow, the implications go even deeper, and they’re creepy, in the best way.

“When I said [to Keke], ‘I’m about to let you down’ and she said, ‘You can’t, that wasn’t her saying ‘You owe me’ or ‘You can’t let me down.’ She was the one saying, ‘You can’t disappoint me.’ She was the one saying, ‘You know that, you got that.’ She was the one encouraging me, not scolding me about my performance. And that’s why I want people to know how black women celebrate and support each other,” Brown said. “Her belief in me made me believe in myself because I really thought I knew it was titanic but it can’t be titanic. She told me, trust yourself. It was just a beautiful moment and I’m so happy it went viral because I don’t know if everyone [knows] Black women can do it. I don’t know if everyone knows that’s how we communicate and that’s how we move in this culture. Black people call each other brother and sister for a reason; we are related. We are family, and I don’t need you to have my lineage for me to celebrate and support.”

She continued, “You know, this came up on Twitter recently because I was talking about the 53% of white women who voted for Trump. And I said, I don’t understand how white women could have a candidate who looks like. …who was an amazing qualified female lead and didn’t vote for her. And a lot of white women stepped in and said, ‘Oh, we’re not supporting each other like that…as a threat. I’m telling you, if I got a hundred tweets, nine out of 10 said exactly that… And I was like, Whoa… Because mostly black women – of course there’s always values outliers – but as a general rule, if I walk into a grocery store and see a black woman I’ve never met and I say ‘Hi’, she’s going to say ‘Hi, sis’ and I’ll say ‘hi’ Thank you brother,’ [he’ll say], ‘I got you sis.’ It’s like that.”

It was also important to Brown that she “give Keke her flowers”, saying Pleasemynews“I’ve known her since she was 12. She’s literally everything you see her believing. She’s funny. She’s confident. She’s beautiful. She’s got talent. She’s smart but beyond that. She is also inclusive and famous Because that’s the other thing I want to clarify about our conversation with black people, like I said on the show: it’s not exclusive. no one else. That’s not excluding anyone. Everyone can sit down with everyone, “Can come to our table. It’s a love. It’s our love for each other as black people and black women, but it extends to our love for everyone else. And that’s why I always say on Twitter if you’re gonna vote vote like a black woman because we vote for the highest good of all. school measures because I want your children to have an education… I am not [in my] more childbearing years, but I want women to have the right to choose. Black people and black women, in particular, always vote for the greater good. We love for the greater good. And so what Keke and I were able to do together with our “Black-tuition”, as I called it, I don’t feel like it’s not for them too. You know what I mean? It’s not something we have that everyone doesn’t seethe and celebrate.”

Pleasemynews contacted representatives of Keke Palmer for comment.

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