10 of the Greatest Black TV Nerds of All Time

Degrassi characters

Liberty Van Zandt

Degrassi: The Next Generation’s Liberty Van Zandt, portrayed by Sarah Barrable-Tishauer, started out as the extremely awkward, far from fashionable, misunderstood and downright annoying nerd. At least, that’s how she was perceived by many of her classmates. As she matured, however, she gained a better sense of fashion and became less annoying to her peers. The overachieving student is extremely intelligent and manages to excel in the classroom despite her dyscalculia. What made Liberty such an interesting TV Blerd is the fact that her character’s dynamics go well beyond what is expected of TV nerds. She faces devastating tragedies like the death of her boyfriend J.T. and even struggles with life-changing decisions such as what to do after becoming pregnant at the age of 15.

Black nerds in children's programming

Ethan James, the Blue Dino Ranger

There aren’t many TV roles that allow for Black nerds to be fully engulfed in comic books and video games while also being able to use an impressive set of athletic skills to save the world from evil villains. Fortunately, however, there were some cases like Kevin Duhaney’s Ethan from Power Rangers Dino Thunder. Regardless of cheesy theatrics and corny, cliché-filled lines, the Power Rangers franchise were a staple to many Millennial Blerds’ childhoods, and Power Rangers Dino Thunder was no exception for today’s young viewers. Ethan, who was one of the few Black TV nerds present in children’s programming in the 2000s, loved comic books and was a clear video game lover who rarely let his laptop leave his side. Fans were first introduced to Ethan as he was using his laptop to hack the school’s sprinkler system as a part of a prank.

 

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Comments

  1. You needed to add animated characters… It would have been really good to see Valerie from 'Josie and the Pussycats' wasn't on the list. She was like Velma from Scooby Do except really hot and sultry not "nerd sexy."

  2. Great list. Striking that there is only one female blerd! We need more representation on screen?

  3. Sorry! Meant to put a period. 🙂