HBO has released the first official trailer for its new sketch comedy series, and the biggest reason to be excited about it is all in the title. “A Black Lady Sketch Show” was written by stand-up comedian and writer Robin Thede and executive produced by “Insecure” creator Issa Rae (Thede is also an EP). The star-studded trailer includes a dizzying mash-up of guest appearances, but the core cast includes Thede, Quinta Brunson, Ashley Nicole Black, and Gabrielle Dennis. The official logline describes the show as “a narrative series set in a limitless magical reality full of dynamic, hilarious characters and celebrity guests.”
Celebrity guests who appear in the trailer include the great Angela Bassett, David Alan Grier, and Laverne Cox. In addition to their talents, the impressive roster also includes Tia Mowry, Aja Naomi King, Patti Labelle, Lena Waithe, Amber Riley, Yvonne Orji, Loretta Devine, Gina Torres, Lil Rel Howery, Jermaine Fowler, Deon Cole, Natasha Rothwell, Marsai Martin, Khandi Alexander, Larry Wilmore, Laverne Cox, Yvette Nicole Brown, Kelly Rowland, and Issa Rae.
Thede first came to prominence as head writer and performer on HBO’s “The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore.” She was the head writer for “The Nightly Show” from 2015-2016, becoming the first African-American woman to hold the position of head writer on any late-night talk show. Before that, she was was head writer on “The Queen Latifah Show” and staff writer on the first two seasons of “Real Husbands of Hollywood” on BET. Thede began hosting her own late-night talk show in late 2017, the short-lived “The Rundown with Robin Thede” on BET.
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Lauren Ashley Smith, who was head writer on “The Rundown with Robin Thede,” will serve in the same capacity on “A Black Lady Sketch Show.” She also will co-executive produce.
“I am more excited about ‘A Black Lady Sketch Show’ than I have ever been about anything in my whole career,” Thede tweeted in June. She added in July: “I created #ablss to amplify just some of the many incredible black ladies in comedy and am so proud of it!! ALSO IT’S FUNNY AF.”
“A Black Lady Sketch Show” premieres August 2 at 11 p.m. on HBO. Check out the joyous first trailer below.