Riverdale's Vanessa Morgan slams show's use of black actors as 'sidekicks', claims she's the 'least paid' regular
Vanessa Morgan who plays the role of Toni Topaz on The CW show 'Riverdale' shared how she is tired of the way the black people were represented in the media
Vanessa Morgan, the actor who plays the role of Toni Topaz in the hit drama 'Riverdale' has taken a stand and is calling out the show's writer for portraying black characters as sidekicks and the show itself because she is the least paid actor on the show. Morgan first registered her opinion on Twitter on May 29 when she wrote, "Tired of how black people are portrayed in Media, tired of us being portrayed as thugs, dangerous or angry scary people. Tired of us also being used as sidekick nondimensional characters to our white leads." She also added, "Or only used in the ads for diversity but not actually in the show.”
When a follower tweeted at her and observed that her character also represented the LGBTQIA+ community in 'Riverdale', Morgan tweeted, "Lmao too bad I’m the only black series regular but also paid the least. girl i could go on for days (sic)." Thus confirming that the show that she had been referring to was indeed 'Riverdale'. In the following days, the cast members of the show were also being critiqued after Morgan's statement.
On Tuesday, June 2, when her fellow cast members were being slammed, Morgan shared on Twitter, "My role on Riverdale has nothing to do with my fellow castmates/friends. They don’t write the show. So no need to attack them, they don’t call the shots & I know they have my back."
Many black actors are calling out the industry for being racist in the past in terms of paying the actors less, writing them off as sidekicks and more. In fact, recently, 'Glee' actor Lea Michele was accused of making "life a living hell" for her co-actor Samantha Marie Ware due to “traumatic microaggressions".
Ware responded to a tweet by Michele which was "George Floyd did not deserve this. This was not an isolated incident and it must end. #BlackLivesMatter.” Ware responded, "Remember when you made my first television gig a living hell?!?! Cause I’ll never forget. I believe you told everyone that if you had the opportunity you would ‘s— in my wig!’ amongst other traumatic microaggressions that made me question a career in Hollywood."
'Lucifer' actor Leslie Ann-Brandt also tweeted, "I’ll start and I’ll add. Pay us, equally and justly for the jobs we do. Lord knows it was harder for coming up in this town." Along with this, she added the many practices in Hollywood that is not okay. Which included having stunt doubles skin darkened or lightened for actors.
Gabriella Union, one of the judges on NBC's 'America's Got Talent' who believed that she was fired because she had asked the producers of the show to answer to an environment that tolerated racist jokes and remarks also spoke about racism and tweeted, "I've never met anyone who was worried about being CALLED a racist, who didn't harbor racist beliefs. What racist people DONT want, is to face CONSEQUENCES for their racism. Fun fact, don't start none, won't be any. Don't wanna be called a racist? Dont do racist sh**."