I'm Inspired By Nola Darling in the New She's Gotta Have It Trailer

Spike Lee’s Netflix series She’s Gotta Have It, based on his 1986 movie of the same name, has been anticipated with some hesitancy. But in this full length trailer, we at least hear more from Nola Darling than the men in her life.


Nola is pansexual, polyamorous, and she’s got three super hot guys at her beck and call. She’s also got her art, her friends, and her internal world, which seems to be a vivid place. As Clover Hope wrote when the series was announced, there has been skepticism about Lee directing every episode of a show about a black woman’s sexuality, especially considering the way Nola’s story was handled in his film (and how a rape by one of her partners was depicted).

His wife, Tonya Lewis Lee, is also executive producing, and it does seem like this new Nola is demanding you pay attention to her autonomy. She says directly to the camera, “I’m damn sure nobody’s property,” as though explicitly addressing critic’s doubts. Compared to the original trailer, which is mostly dudes talking about how hot Nola is, her character does seem to have evolved with the times:

Sign me up for juggling gorgeous guys while self-actualizing yourself in an incredible apartment. If Nola Darling can get through this series without being punished for enjoying herself, I will consider it a guide to life. We’ll see if the trailer lives up to the promise of actual sex positivity and revolution when it’s released this Thanksgiving.

Contributing Writer, writing my first book for the Dial Press called The Lonely Hunter, follow me on Twitter @alutkin



It is with some trepidation I disagree with bell hooks about a pop culture artifact. But MY sense, watching “She’s Gotta Have It” when it first came out, was that it explicitly addressed men’s hypocrisy about women’s sexuality, along with women’s difficulty breaking free from men’s patriarchal expectations.

It’s the first movie I can think of that brutally exposed the dark side of a Nice Guy (tm), and ultimately, it didn’t excuse his behavior. Nola treating her rape as if it were her own fault is, in fact, what many women do. We are seeing that with women who continued having sex “consensually” with Harvey Weinstein after his initial assault.

For me, the powerful part was Nola having her epiphany and dumping that Nice Guy (tm)’s ass. Of course the men, maybe Spike Lee included, had no fucking clue why she did what she did, but it made visceral sense to me.

TV Nola is going to have to go Full Metal Jacket on his ass to have the same effect.