Degrassi Junior High

Season 3 Episode 14

Black & White

Aired Sunday 5:00 PM Feb 20, 1989 on CBC

Episode Fan Reviews (4)

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out of 10
23 votes
  • Michelle finds out her parents are racist.


    "Black & White" is an excellent Degrassi Junior High episode. This episode is about racism and I think this show dealt with the issue appropriately. It was so cute how BLT asked Michelle to the graduation dance. Michelle's parent's are awful. I can't believe her father is racist. I love how Michelle decided to go to the dance with BLT anyways. It was also awful when Spike had an interview for a job and the guy wouldn't interview her because of her hair. I give this episode a 9/10.

  • not good at all

    BLT invites Michelle to the graduation dance and she accepts. She introduces him to her parents, who then forbid her to go out with him. They tell her she is too young to date, but she wonders if they don't want her to date him because he is black. When she questions her mother about this, her mother says they are just looking out for her. Michelle decides to go to the dance with BLT anyway. When Spike's babysitter for Emma moves away, Spike has to find a job to pay for daycare. I didnt like this episode at all. a touchy subject like this requires a far better script than that. michelle was a good actor but i didnt like blt at all. its ok to have a serious episode if the script is good. but in this case it wasnt.
  • Michelle introduces BLT to her parents. They forbid her from going to the dance with him. Michelle presses her mom, who confirms her fears, saying she is best to stick with her own race. Spike applies for a bus-boy job and gets rejected for her hair.

    This is a favorite episode; Michelle is one of my favorite characters. Shows that racism isn't over in the 80s yet. And Michelle and BLT are such a good couple; helping each other, not just making out. I love the part when the girls are talking, and Alexa says her parents don't even like her going with Simon. Michelle wonders how she can still date him, and they laugh. Not every girl knows how to manipulate her parents like they do. But we never see Alexa's home, so we don't know. She's Greek, so all I can imagine is references to My Big Fat Greek Wedding. But not everyone can. It depends on the relationship, the methods of discipline used, and so on. And it appears Michelle is an only child too. Michelle's mom's saying she can still go to the dance, but with her girlfriends? I'm sorry, but that's hardly possible. Then what's the difference if she goes with him? They won't be there to see she doesn't dance with him anyway. I understand thinking she's too young to have a serious boyfriend, but a dance is a supervised thing in school. But maybe she's saying that to be a mediator; foreshadowing of their marriage breakdown in the next season. Oh, her mom was showing a house. In the next season, Michelle says her mom wanted to go back to school, but her dad made her stay home? And she still does this work? Well, maybe it's only very part-time; like when he's at work only.
  • BLT faces racism at school and with Michelle's parents.

    In this powerful episode, BLT is discriminated against after he bumps into someone in the hallway and they call him a "nigger" which really offends him and he gets into a fight. While everyone in school is shocked to see this happen at Degrassi, we see that the other characters are just a racist even thoguh not as much as the guy in the beginning. Alexa blurts out that BLT must be a great dancer cause he's black and the other girls are shocked to hear the comment as if in a regular high school no one would be shocked at all but this is Degrassi. Anyway BLT likes Michelle and she likes him back and so he asks her to the dance, then when she brings BLT home and Michelle's parents come in they look like their daughter is standing in front of a serial killer or something even though they don't say anything BLT senses it too and leaves. Michelle confused then wonders if her parents are racist which leads her to conclude that they're just looking out for her, which basically states that they are and they wouldn't let a black person come into contact with her daughter. I just have a few comments and questions for the episode:

    - Why doesn't Michelle just stand up to her parents or just go to the dance with BLT without them knowing (which is what she eventually does)

    - You should be warned the episode has some language that may offend some people, but nonetheless it was powerful and nessesary for them to use it in this episode.

    - Another thing on BLT, he seems to be affected by someone calling him the n word so much and anyone would be upset and he swears the next time he sees the guy he'll beat him up yet he never mentions or talks about this ever again.

    Well enough on the main plot the sub-plot now deals with prejudice. Spike applys for a job now feeling that Emma can be taken care of by her mother with the help of Liz. Then she finds the owner doesn't accept her becuase of her hair and Liz gets really mad, but Spike just brushes it off. Now although its a minor sub-plot I actually found it important to the stories plot, I mean teens everyday are discrimnated against becuase now and days we have a reputation as criminals and thugs but Spike proves that its not true dispite ones looks, I think the sub-plot should've been expanded more and here are some comments:

    - Amanda (Spike) did wonderful in this episode as well as Cathy (Liz), they showed how it really feels for someone to do that to you.

    - I didn't like that they expanded more on Spike not having a job and not that much on the discrimination.

    Well overall this was a great and contorversial episode, that I recommend to you I give it 4 and 1/2 stars out of 5.