Underappreciated Actress of Color #30: Gina Ravera

~ Special Edition ~

Do not.  Bring up.  Showgirls....that train wreck was not her fault.

Besides, her braids were bangin', and she had one of the most fucked-up, trying scenes in the whole damn film.  If that film could've one any kind of positive award, it would've gone to her.  Not Gershon, not MacLachlan, and sure as hell not Berkley.  Mm-mm.  *shakes head*  It would've been my woman right here, and if it didn't, someone would've gotten an earful.

I don't think Ms. Gina Ravera has been given her appropriate due.  When James Spader and William Shatner drooled over her openly on an episode of Boston Legal, I thought, "Mm-hm...better bow down and show some love."  When she donned a suit and got a role on The Closer, I thought, "Mm...that's cool.  Chica belongs on the big screen.  She is too fine for TV."

You know her.  From Frasier to Star Trek: TNG to Soul Food to ER, this classically trained Blacktina dancer has done e'rything to make sure we know her name and that's she is here.  I first noticed on her Frasier, where she's played a waitress.  Even back then her braids were bangin' (Imma get these this summer; but I'm thinking a dark gold for me, you know?  "Outdated" be damned).

Ms. Thang has since left The Closer, done an episode on Private Practice, and will be doing Heaven-knows-what next.  All I know is that she is still fine and I better be seeing her in a film soon.  *shakes head*  At 43, this woman is still too fine to be confined to TV.


  1. Yes! I hated that the one woman of color in Showgirls (ick!...shudder) had to go through what she did. And I adored her on The Closer, even though her character's camera time dwindled away to nothing but a raised eyebrow here, a hurried walk there. It's not right that she isn't doing more. Like any other gorgeous actress (read: a non-POC actress), she could at LEAST be window dressing, a gorgeous prop, in a few movies, though she deserves more. Thanks for highlighting her.

  2. That scene in Showgirls damn near traumatized me. Not only did her character endure rape, but she was the "second choice" to Berkley. And Berkley gets vengeance for Ravera; Ravera never gets to avenge herself (but hey...at least that's a good example of a WP doing something for a POC they profess affection for).

    There was another woman of color at the beginning. She was big, loud, bossy, and angry - in other words, a total bitch. THEN...she was deliberately injured in one of the early, ahem, "dances" and we saw neither hide nor hair of her after that.

    Talk about a film misrepresenting POC....

  3. It saddens me that I haven't heard of over half of the people of color you've listed. Thanks to you, I'm getting to know these lovely folks and when I can, I'll invest in their careers.

    Thank you for bringing everyone to our attention.

  4. You are most definitely welcome!

  5. I remember this fine actress in Showgirls and Soul Food. She got the shaft each time. Unfornately, blond/brunette haired, blue eyed women are marketed for white America regardless of what the rest of us want. There will be a day when more so-called minorities will have more control in what we see on TV. I hope it is within my lifetime. Until then, I look for actresses like C.H. Pounder from Avatar, Victoria Rowell from the Young and the Restless, Holly Robinson Peete, Pam Grier or others. Doesn't Hollywood know by now that women of color age much slower than some other women? (That's a rhetorical question.) When will they learn? Thanks for your mention of Ravera. The more we mention these actresses, the more we look for them on the screen.

    Thanks Ankhensen

  6. @ Ms. Love,

    You're welcome!!!


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