My people, join me in welcoming Nigeria to American sitcom television! If you haven’t already heard, there’s a new romantic comedy coming to CBS on Monday, 9/23/2019 at 8pm EST called Bob Hearts Abishola.
Synopsis of the trailer.
Bob finds himself in the emergency room because of a “heart attack”. There he meets Abishola, who is an emergency room nurse, and he kinda likes her. Bob is really into socks, and tries to win points with Abishola by gifting her socks, which I actually think is kinda cute. Thank goodness, Abishola is not your typical Nigerian girl, or she would have been looking for assurance, because na who sock epp?
Bobs likes the way Abishola says his name with a Nigerian accent like Bawb instead of Bahb, which by the way, I can never wrap my head around. It’s an “o” for Pete’s sake, why say it like an “a”? This is exactly why I subconsciously have two different accents – one at work, so they understand what I’m saying, and another at home, because at the end of the day, omo naija ni mi.
As you’d guess from the name, Bob is your typical oyinbo white American man. The show stars Billy Gardell as Bob and Folake Olowofoyeku as Abishola.
My honest thoughts based on the trailer.
First, I must confess that I was going to boycott the show, because of all the Nigerian names out there, they chose to remix my name and mess it up; the name that my oyinbo friends often describe as sounding like a beautiful flower (which is code for we don’t know how the heck to pronounce your name). I forgive CBS though, because despite wrecking my name, Abishola in the show is giving me major “black skin girl, your skin just like pearls” vibe, and I’m here for all of it.
Bob hearts Abishola has all the typical Nigerian facts, like “A woman your age cannot be picky”, or “study hard and become a doctor.” These things, I think, are more funny to first generation Nigerian Americans. For people like me who grew up in Nigeria, these kind of facts were our everyday reality – they are neither funny nor sad, they are just facts, and facts don’t get me laughing. Regardless, I still think there will be some unexpected moments in the show, and that we’re in for a good laugh.
Let’s talk about Abishola’s accent though. Bless her heart, it was pretty accurate, but borderline forced and exaggerated. It happens when you’ve been away from home for so long. Good effort from her regardless.
I think Bob hearts Abishola is a good move by CBS. For sure, they’ll get many Nigerians and other Africans in the United States watching the show. Plus, you know the Americans are curious enough about us anyway, so they’ll watch the show too…either because their doctors and pharmacists are Nigerians, or because #yahoo and #419…either way, they are curious enough about us to watch.
Overall, the sitcom seems like a really cute love story. And who doesn’t love love?
My advice for CBS.
Y’all better not mess this up, or you know our people will come for you. When have you ever seen Nigerians play with their pride? That’s right, never. And we won’t make this one exception.
My hopes for the show is that it will capture the immigrant life in America, because Lord knows the struggle has been so real. I also hope that we get to see the true Nigerian culture featured through our food, music, clothes, and language(s). The story line seems authentic, and I am actually happy that Nigerians will be represented well on mainstream television.
Do you plan to watch Bob hearts Abishola? Would you like me to recap each episode?