As part of their Emmy-winning Look Different campaign, MTV collaborated with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas to create White People, a new documentary focused on five young Caucasians.
In a press release, the network said that White People is “a first-of-its-kind documentary exploring race, whiteness, and how young white people perceive their racial identity in an increasingly multiracial America.”
Although it is clearly intended to be a respectful, conversation-provoking look into racial issues, the newly released preview doesn’t really demonstrate that:
As the preview does show, most of the participants are hesitant to talk about race, even when prompted with questions about how their lives would be different if they weren’t white or what “white” means to them. Paired with quotes left without contexts, the clip is largely uncomfortable — and not in the way Jose said he intended.
So far, reviews of the YouTube clip are pretty evenly split between supporters and critics.
But that doesn’t seem to be the case on Twitter: “This is a freaking joke,” one person commented. Said another,”So MTV is doing a show called ‘White People.’ So pretty much every other show on TV.”
One way or the other, MTV’s White People seems destined to create some interesting comments. It premieres on Wednesday, July 22 at 8/7c.