50 Cent’s highly anticipated STARZ series, Black Mafia Family, debuted on Sunday (September 26). Inspired by the true story of brothers Demetrius “Big Meech” Flenory and Terry “Southwest T” Flenory, the show is a fictional depiction of the Black Mafia Family, a once-massive drug and money laundering organization.
The Flenory brothers entered the music business around 2000 as a front in an attempt to legitimize the business. Called BMF Entertainment, the company served as a promoter for actus such as Jeezy and Fabolous. Big Meech and Southwest T were ultimately locked up for their crimes, but T was released in May 2020 amid coronavirus concerns. Meanwhile, Meech was granted a reduced sentence and expected to walk out of prison in 2028.
Ice-T, who is credited as one of the first West Coast gangsta rappers, evidently tuned in and caught an unexpected nod to his pioneering career. On Tuesday (September 28), the Law & Order: Special Victims Unit star posted a screenshot from the show to Twitter. The photo shows actor Demetrius Flenory Jr. (who plays his father Big Meech) in his childhood bedroom with Run-DMC and Ice-T posters up in the background.
“Shout out to @50Cent,” he captioned the post. “I got a little love on his new show @bmfstarz in Big Meech’s childhood bedroom. Now THAT’S Gangsta!”
Ice-T likely felt similarly to Chuck D in 2018 when he noticed two Public Enemy posters in the Marvel blockbuster Black Panther. At the beginning of the film, director and Oakland native Ryan Coolger took viewers to the blacktop of his hometown circa 1992, the breeding ground of the Black Panther Party.
While in N’Jobu’s apartment (played by Sterling K. Brown), a Public Enemy Fear Of A Black Planet poster can be seen hanging on the wall. Later, another Public Enemy poster is seen briefly, only this time it’s for 1988’s It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back.
Speaking to HipHopDX shortly after the film’s release, Chuck D explained how the placement of the Public Enemy posters wasn’t by accident.
“The photographer who shot Yo! Bum Rush The Show and It Takes A Nation Of Millions is Glen E. Friedman,” Chuck said at the time. “Glen shot Ice-T, Rob Base, Run-DMC and then Glen shot us. We shot the jail shot at a precinct in midtown Manhattan not too far from Madison Square Garden. We got in there and shot it.
“Glen was the one who probably had to approve it and then we all had to. I was a big Black Panther fan — not only as Black Panthers but the comic book created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in ’68. It was a no brainer. Marvel doesn’t make any mistakes. It was a phenomenon to know the Black Panther movie was coming before everyone knew it was a phenomenon because I grew up with it.”
Chadwick Boseman, the undeniable hero of the Black Panther film, died in August 2020 after a private battle with colon cancer. He was 43.