FX's Atlanta is widely celebrated for being a unique lens into black culture, as it follows three black men living in the A. But several people have also criticized its portrayal of black women.
In one episode, "Champagne Papi," the show falls into the angry black woman stereotype as a dark-skinned woman ferociously eyes a black man and his white girlfriend. Another woman, who is dark-skinned and one of the only plus-sized women seen in the show thus far, gets caught trying to sneak into Drake's New Year's Eve party and is physically removed from the scene. Other people have also advocated for Zazie Beetz's Van to have more screen time.
Unfortunately for Stefani Robinson, who's the only woman in Atlanta's writers' room, the brunt of the criticism often solely goes to her, whether or not the 25-year-old wrote the script or not. ("Champagne Papi" was written by Ibra Ake.)
"I just see my name get thrown around, like, 'Well she’s the only one, so she’s responsible. Is that how she thinks of all women?' I become the lightning rod for the females' perspective," explained Robinson in an interview with The Wrap. "I’m just one person, and I’m here, and it’s a different perspective and I’m championing this and I’m happy to be in this space. But I think when you are the only one of anything you are suddenly the voice for everyone. And it’s such a hard place to be in and, I think, not a fair place to be in. There need to be more women everywhere, to be honest."
But that doesn't mean she isn't grateful to be where she is. She just wants opportunities for more women to contribute to the Donald Glover–created show.
"It’s a really bittersweet thing, I think," she said. "I’m so happy to be the woman in the space, because I think that it’s so rare in Hollywood for a woman, especially a woman of color, to exist in these spaces. So on the one hand, I’m grateful and I think it’s so important and I feel so blessed. But on the other hand, you always wish there was more than one."
In an essay for Vice, Robinson stated her goal at FX is "to do stuff that hasn't been done before, or done from the voice of a 25-year-old black woman." She might just get her wish. Last year, Robinson inked an exclusive production deal with FX Productions, where she'll be able to create her own TV series for the network. If we'd have to guess, we imagine the writers' room will be full of black women when it happens.