While we’ve pointed to a group of characters who function as panopticons, Lee’s composition of the shots Love Daddy is in and his speech put the character in a very different place than Mother-Sister, or even the police. He seems to be 1 part God, 1 part Spike Lee, and 8 parts funny as hell.
(Taken at 4:24)
From the very beginning of the film’s plot-line, DJ Love Daddy is there. His name hints towards an affectionate and humorous nickname for God. In the black Christian tradition as I understand it, God is often referred to The Father. He is also an unlimited font of love. Depending on whether or not one takes a deterministic view of God’s role human life, he either orchestrates all happenings on earth, or is the one who set it all in motion. DJ Love Daddy is a fitting name.
The plot-line opens with him holding an alarm clock and announcing himself as “Mr. Señor Love Daddy.” The very first thing he says–in fact, the very first spoken line of the movie–is “wake up.” In this moment, he is not a human being. We only see his hand, his mouth, and a microphone. He is not yet a radio station host. He speaks to us. The playfulness and gentle insistence of his wake-up call mimics a parent waking up a young child for school.
One line in his opening stands out: “The last on your dial, but first in your hearts” (4:41). This line possesses the kind of playful cathartic humor that I often see among people of color, especially when talking about the world we live in. The first clause both foreshadows the events at the end of the movie and is the fulcrum of humor. The message here, as Lee points out, is that love is key.