She’s won us over as multiple memorable high school cheerleaders, Martin Lawrence’s DEA sister, and a successful news anchor — but Gabrielle Union’s best work might be on social media.
The actress has become a must-follow on all platforms, where she shares throwback photos from 10 Things I Hate About You, roasts husband Dwyane Wade, and speaks out on important issues. Ahead of her BET series Being Mary Jane returning on Tuesday, EW presents all the times she’s been the queen of social media.
When she picks on her husband
For non-NBA fans, a few years ago, a photo went viral of Union and Wade on vacation sharing a banana boat with NBA stars Chris Paul and LeBron James. Ever since, Wade, Paul, James, and Carmelo Anthony — who was present but not on the boat — have been deemed “Team Banana Boat.” Well, earlier this month, Union and Wade were on a trip sans the crew when she shared a Snapchat of Wade and an empty banana boat floating behind him. “Lonely ass banana boat,” she wrote.
At 35, Wade can’t quite move like he did in his prime and that was put on full display in an April playoff game when his wide open dunk attempt was rejected by the rim. Bleacher Report shared the highlight, writing, “Who moved the rim on D-Wade?” Union’s claim of responsibility was a delight.
It was Wade’s former Chicago Bulls teammate Jimmy Butler who was in Union’s crosshairs in a tweet from earlier in the season. A Twitter user had scored a viral tweet courtesy of a video of Butler interacting with someone in the crowd who seemed to be talking about Wade. “When Your Trying To Hook Up Your Boy With Girls At The Club,” Gustavo Vega captioned the clip. Union’s perfect response became an even bigger hit than the original.
When she defends her husband
While Union enjoys a good-natured zinger at her husband’s expense, she’s still quick to come to his defense… kind of.
When she sees her husband naked on a magazine cover
Last year, Wade appeared naked on the cover of ESPN’s annual Body Issue and it elicited quite the enthusiastic reaction from his wife.
When she doesn’t shy away from taking a stance
Union’s sense of humor isn’t the only reason to follow her on social media. She’s been known to passionately and intelligently weigh in on social issues.
When she proposes an epic meal
A popular parlor game is to name who — dead or alive — you’d invite to your dream dinner party. Well, last year, Union dreamed up quite the appealing boozy brunch that would feature her character from Being Mary Jane, Issa (Issa Rae) from Insecure, Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) from Empire, Rainbow (Tracee Ellis Ross) from Black-ish, Annalise (Viola Davis) from How to Get Away With Murder, and Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington) from Scandal.
When she and Wade go full ‘Hamilton’
Before celebrities, including Union and Wade, were singing their favorite song from Hamilton for #Ham4All, the couple already showed off their wine-aided anniversary edition duet of “Satisfied.”
When she shares adorable throwback photos of our favorite high school movies
At the beginning of her career, Union had an all-time run of classic high school films. In an 18-month span, she starred in She’s All That, Bring It On, and 10 Things I Hate About You. As a result, she has plenty of adorable behind-the-scenes photos to share, getting us both nostalgic and weepy.
When she shows appreciation for other women of color
Women Crush Wednesday isn’t just for men shouting out their wives or teenagers hoping for a reply from their favorite actress. Union often shares her WCWs, which can range from Spider-Man: Homecoming star Zendaya to Senator Kamala Harris, and usually accompanies the post with a sweet message about why she loves that specific woman.
When she uses her platform to help
With great power comes great responsibility. Union has close to 3.5 million Twitter followers and takes advantage of that reach by frequently retweeting missing person alerts.
Being Mary Jane returns to BET on Tuesday at 10 p.m. ET.