The expression on two-year-old Kenzo’s face said more than a thousand diversity experts could explain.
While the family watched Disney’s Encanto, Kah Brand noticed her son’s delight when he realized that a character on screen looked very much like him. Antonio had brown skin and curly hair just like Kenzo.
Brand took to Instagram to record the moment and Kenzo’s glee at finding someone on screen that looked just like him.
“He seemed to be in awe, just smiling and staring at the screen,” she told POPSUGAR. “Then he stood up and looked back at his dad and me, still smiling. For him, I truly believe that he thought he was seeing himself because of the resemblance between him and Antonio.”
When Kah posted to Instagram the picture of Kenzo proudly standing next to the TV screen, her friends and family couldn’t contain their excitement over the similarities. “As a mom, I’m always trying to capture ‘these’ moments,” she said. “I was amazed at his reaction. It just truly made me smile and my heart happy.”
But for her, it was not only the resemblance that mattered. “It was the impact of feeling seen,” Kah added. “It is essential for Black children to feel seen and to be connected to positive and empowering images for their self-esteem.”
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Brand tried to remember a character on television or movies that mirrored her.
“We didn’t have this growing up. What’s so special about Encanto was that it didn’t stop at just showing us brown characters. It showed the diversity in hair textures and skin tone. I’m so grateful for moments like this because I’m aware of its impact, especially for brown boys and girls.”
“It brings joy to our family. There’s power in representation and magic in creativity,” she continued. “This generation and future generations will experience inclusivity because the film industry is moving in a direction that reflects the true diversity of our world.”