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Little girl's reaction to a Black character wearing a bonnet shows why representation is everything

'It's a new day and we embrace brown skin, natural hair and the total Black experience,' the young girl's mom wrote on Instagram.

Little girl's reaction to a Black character wearing a bonnet shows why representation is everything
Cover Image Source: (L)YouTube/Disney Television Animation News (R)Instagram/adybreannamartin

When Tariq "Black Thought" Trotter and Ahmir "Questlove" Thompson of The Roots partnered with Disney+ to launch "Rise Up, Sing Out," they aimed to deliver inspiring and optimistic messages to young audiences about culture and celebrating differences. Featuring songs focused on inclusion and empowerment, the eight-episode animated musical short-form series premiered on February 2 in honor of Black History Month. The series has received an overwhelmingly positive response from viewers for how it addresses topics such as racial microaggressions, diversity and inclusivity.


The latest episode in particular, titled 'Super Bonnet,' is being hailed as proof of why representation matters after a mom shared a heartwarming video of her little girl's reaction to it. The short—which celebrates Black hair care—features friends Taniya, Shawna and So-Hyeon at a slumber party where they break out in song to teach their friend Amelia about how they use bonnets to keep their natural curly-textured hair protected while sleeping. In the video shared by mom Breanna Martin, aka @ladybreannamartin on Instagram, her daughter is seen jamming to the catchy song while wearing an adorable pink leopard bonnet of her own.


"This is why representation matters!!! Seven got so excited to wear her bonnet because she seen the other little girls on TV wearing one. You could see her reaction was like 'hey, I have one of those too,'" Martin wrote. "I posted this on my TikTok and it was comments of people saying this video made them cry. It's a new day and we embrace brown skin, natural hair and the total Black experience. What did Beyoncé say?! 'I like my baby heir with baby hairs and Afros.' And that's how my baby wear her hair! With her baby hair and Afro."


The video has since been shared on other social media platforms as well, with many voicing how they wished they had grown up with shows that celebrated Black experiences. "It makes a huge difference for our brown girls when they see girls their color wearing bonnets and doing great things in life. I Love this video," commented Instagram user alvermadenise. "Aww so precious! Yes, representation is everything! So happy this generation is being more exposed to it! Ain't nobody gonna be able to tell them nothing hunny," wrote chari.nikki. Another video shared on social media also shows a little girl being enamored by the episode celebrating Black hair.


“The 'Rise Up, Sing Out' shorts touch on a lot of real-world issues, especially for young Black kids, that just weren't talked about when we were growing up. The beautiful thing about these shorts is that not only are they going to provide young kids the proper language to talk to their friends and family about some of the things that might be bothering them, but it's also going to give parents the tools on how to respond," Questlove and Black Thought said in a prepared statement about the series, reports Variety. "We feel this is the perfect moment and the perfect time for us to put this project out into the world to plant a seed about kindness that will hopefully have a lasting impact for generations to come."


Joe D’Ambrosia, senior vice president of original programming and general manager of Disney Junior, said that they were "proud to introduce these entertaining and inspiring animated shorts that reinforce the fundamental values of respect and kindness, which we created in response to parents today who are increasingly asking for media content that supports young kids' self-esteem and helps them grow up happy, empathetic and respectful of others. Bigotry, bias and stereotyping aren't simple topics for anyone to tackle, but the talented creative team did a thoughtful job in delivering memorable songs and stories that reflect the opportunity storytellers have to help parents as they raise healthy, thoughtful and well-rounded kids."

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