EXCLUSIVE: Jeff Johnson on the “ratchet and revolutionary” nature of ‘Mancave’

Mancave, BET’s provocative new all-male talk show, debuted last week and caused quite a stir with their first guest when Lamar Odom threw some shade at his ex, Khloe Kardashian. 


TheGrio chatted up the show’s executive producer and moderator, Jeff Johnson, to find out what we can expect from the groundbreaking new show this season.

“The goal was to create a space where we could be authentic, unfiltered and transparent. I think we have hit the mark,” he says.

“We want to hear men sound off on the things that matter. Some of those things will be around social and cultural issues. We’re not going to shy away from politics when it’s relevant and there isn’t anything that we won’t talk about.”

Jeff Johnson will lead the conversations with co-hosts; R&B singer, Tank, comedian Gerland “Slink” Johnson, and music producer Marcos “Kosine” Palacios of the infamous duo Da Internz.

“We are fathers and previously incarcerated people and people who came up in the hood and people who came up in the suburbs. While every man is not us, we hope every man can see a part of themselves in us.”

READ MORE: WATCH: BET’s all-male talk show ‘Mancave’ stirs up controversy pitting Kim Kardashian against Lamar Odom

Jeff Johnson weighed in on whether or not viewers will see the men tackle the subject of #MeToo and #TimesUp on the series.

“I think that it’s gonna be really important to hear men’s voices around how they respond and how they intend to be allies with sisters in this space. It has to be done carefully and authentically because this is really women’s moment to define what this is and men need to either stand in alliance and figure out what that looks like or in some cases understand that they’re on the wrong side of history,” he explains.

“We want to be very careful in how we do that because I don’t want us to come off as opportunistic. I don’t want us to get in the way of the narrative that a lot of our sisters are creating around what this movement is going to look like. I don’t think it has fully been determined. Men so often get in the way and fu*k shit up.”

According to Johnson, the moves men make surrounding the discussions of sexual assault deserve to remain driven by women’s voices.

“It’s not time for us to start making broad, public proclamations about #MeToo and #TimesUp. I think we have to tread carefully and show deference,” he continues.

“If we do go down that road, I’ll be consulting a whole lot of sisters that have been at the forefront, especially black women. I think there’s a real conversation that has to happen here with black men and black women that will be nuanced but connected to the broader conversation.”

When it comes his role as moderator on the show, Jeff Johnson insists he’s no referee.

“I am only a moderator from the standpoint that I determine when we go to the next topic. I’m not producing these brothas. The conversations are the same as the countless talks I’ve had in countless basements and man caves and at the cigar lounge,” he says.

“It’s about brothas who respect each other enough to be honest with each other and what comes out is horrifying and inspiring. It is ratchet and revolutionary. It is intellectual and it’s stupid because the complexity of men is that we’re all those things and that’s what I love the most about it.”

Mancave airs Thursdayat 10:30pm on BET.