'American Soul': Darius McCray's look as James Brown trolled, fans say he deserves 'an award for this travesty'

'American Soul' is a BET drama series that focuses on Don Cornelius and the story behind his iconic music and dance program 'Soul Train' which ran from 1971 till 2006

                            'American Soul': Darius McCray's look as James Brown trolled, fans say he deserves 'an award for this travesty'
Darius McCrary and James Brown (Getty Images)

Fans on social media declared their surprise when it was revealed that actor Darius McCrary would be playing the iconic singer James Brown, in Season 2 of the BET music/drama series 'American Soul'. As a 1970s period-based show, 'American Soul' focuses on the African-American TV show host and producer, Don Cornelius, and the story behind his iconic music and dance program 'Soul Train', which ran from 1971 till 2006. 'Soul Train' usually featured everything from R&B, funk, soul to disco, pop, and hip hop artistes during its 35-year stint, so it comes as no surprise that Brown would make an appearance on 'American Soul'.

James Brown was one of the most important African-American artistes during the latter half of the 20th century, often regarded as the founding father of funk. He even earned titles like "Soul Brother No 1" and the "Godfather of Soul" during his sparkling 50-year career that saw him sing (and dance) over everything from gospel and funk to soul and rhythm and blues.

James Brown performs on stage at the Live 8 Edinburgh concert at Murrayfield Stadium on July 6, 2005 in Edinburgh, Scotland (Getty Images)

So when BET's official Twitter account announced that actor McCrary would be playing Brown, social media couldn't believe the news. To many TV viewers, McCrary is still best known as Edward "Eddie" Winslow from the beloved TV show 'Family Matters', although he also had a two-year stint as Malcolm Winters on the popular daytime soap opera 'The Young and the Restless'. 'American Soul's announcement stated - "The King Of Soul is making his way to Soul Train! Don't miss James Brown (@DariusMcCrary) on #AmericanSoulBET this Wed 10/9c!" It was accompanied by a picture of McCrary decked up like James Brown in a paisley shirt, scarf, and a '70s hairstyle wig that seemed to have left most people tickled pink.

Darius McCrary attends the 4th annual Roger Neal Oscar Viewing Dinner Icon Awards and after-party at Hollywood Palladium on February 24, 2019 in Los Angeles, California (Getty Images)

Fans were crowing long and hard over the hilarious promo picture. One fan said, "They got Eddie Winslow looking like the Bakery lady from Publix Supermarket that used to give you free cookies. He better win an award for this travesty." Another tweet read, "Eddie Winslow is playing James Brown or Viola Davis? I'm confused." A fan tweeted, "Eddie Winslow is out here looking Fred from a black version of Scooby-Doo." Another hysterical tweet read, "BET why y'all got Eddie Winslow dressed like he's interviewing for the Aunt Jemima rebranding campaign." Probably the best description came from a fan who said, "Damn they got Eddie Winslow looking like Madea, Ving Rhames, James Brown, Estelle Winslow and Ashtray Grandma from 'Dont be a Menace' all in one shot. That's impressive."



Plenty more people couldn't fathom why social media was referring to McCrary by his most well-known role. "Why y’all keep calling him Eddie Winslow?" said one laughing fan. Another said, "These folks got Eddie Winslow trending like this is this man’s real name, I am dying." A fan also giggled, "Me finding out why Eddie Winslow is trending....Y’all calling him Eddie Winslow in 2020....🤣🤣🤣🤣" You can see whether McCrary does justice to his role as Brown in 'American Soul' this Wednesday night at 10 pm ET /9 pm CT on BET. Most fans will probably be tuning in for the sheer entertainment factor by the looks of things.

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