Reagan Gomez is going to take a look at what life is like for two sisters trying to save everyone during the apocalypse with her new online series “Surviving The Dead.”
The entertainment industry has been obsessed with imagining what the world will be like after a catastrophic event. Whether looking at how people survive the immediate fall-out or the distant dystopian future, people of color are often factored out of the story. Sadly, the fan bases for these shows and movies are waaay me diverse than the cast.
Instead of leaving it up to the mainstream to do it, Reagan is taking matters into her own hands and representing for Black nerds everywhere! “It’s important for me to do this series because it’s not being done,” Reagan told #TeamBeautiful.”I want to see these characters. I want to see this story. And I’m tired of waiting for others to make these stories.”
With all of the sci-fi shows on TV (pas or present), there have only been a handful of Black women involved in the stories. Outside of Uhura on “Star Trek,” how many can you name? It’s been recently that Black women were made central characters on sci-fi shows like “Eureka,” starring Sallie Richardson Whitfield, and “Sleepy Hollow.” That show is helmed by Nicole Beharie. Meanwhile CBS has just ended season 1 of Halle Berry’s “Extant. Let’s nor forget Danai Gurira, who plays Michonne on “The Walking Dead”! All at once that sounds like a lot, but over the course of TV history, it’s really nothing.
“Black women are under-represented everywhere. In every field,” said Reagan. “I’m a black woman in Hollywood. I never needed anyone to tell me how invisible black women are. That’s the whole reason I decided to start writing in the first place in my teens. I wanted to write characters that I wished I could audition for. Characters that I wished I could play. And those roles weren’t there.”
Reagan will have plenty of weighty roles for actors on her show, which really requires a complex cast of characters. “So many times, when you ‘meet’ characters in this genre, they’ve already lost people,” Reagan explained to Hello Beautiful. “Lost their parents and children, etc. I wanted to explore, for a black family [the question of] how far would you go to keep your family alive in the Apocalypse? We’ve never seen that.”
The web series is a sci-fi thriller that will center on a doctor named Shayla and her younger sister Lucy, who unwittingly find themselves at the center of a mysterious new “flu” outbreak. As they’re fleeing the city they find out that their father is somewhat responsible for the virus, which is way more serious than anyone could have anticipated, and the government is hunting them down! All this while they’re trying to save their father and the world in general.
Post-apocalyptic shows tend be very heavy (because, you know, it’s the end of the world), but Reagan has written in some lighter moments for juxtaposition. “There will definitely be some funny moments because that’s life,” she said. “But this show is very grounded in reality. It’s very real.”
Sounds exciting, right? Well, Reagan and her crew are pretty much paying for the entire project out of their own pockets, but they need your help. Her team is looking to raise $8,500 to bring the story to the web. You can chip in over at IndieGogo. So far, RGP Productions is 84 percent of the way to achieving their goal, and there are just 13 days until the campaign is shut down.