NOTE: This spoiler was submitted by Jeremy

The film opens with text explaining that the “magical negro” is a character in most stories whose sole purpose is to advance the story of the white protagonist. While most believe they only exist in fiction, others know the truth.

Aren Mbondo (Justice Smith) is a struggling artist presenting a piece of his own art at a gallery. Every other art piece gets sold, but his work involving yarn confuses everyone and gets no attention. His boss Andrea (Gillian Vigman) tells him to approach an art collector to try and get him to buy his work, but the collector mistakes Aren for a waiter, and he is too meek and timid to do anything about it, so he takes the man’s plate and glass. Andrea tells Aren she is canceling his solo art show for the next month since he cannot stick up for himself.

Aren starts walking home when he encounters a drunk girl trying to use an ATM. She asks Aren to hold her purse, but she is TOO drunk and assumes her purse was stolen. She sees her boyfriend and his friend and begins to panic, leading to the two to think Aren is trying to steal her purse. Roger (David Alan Grier), the bartender at the gallery, intervenes and has the purse magically reappear in the girl’s hands. Roger then convinces the three to go to a nearby restaurant that he recommends before he takes Aren with him.

Roger tells Aren he has been watching him and how painfully awkward he is around white people. He reveals to Aren that he has magic powers because he belongs to a secret organization called The American Society of Magical Negroes, dedicated to making white people feel more comfortable, because, according to them, uncomfortable white people are dangerous. Roger brings Aren to the society’s headquarters, which is accessed through a barbershop using a pocket watch as entry, and ran by a woman named Dede (Nicole Byer). One of the other heads, Gabbard (Aisha Hinds), shows new recruits the types of “magical negroes” in fiction that help white people (using parodies of “The Legend of Bagger Vance”, “The Green Mile”, and “Driving Ms. Daisy”) with their work, based on a meter of “white tears” that the society members must keep at a “green” level, because “red” could mean death.

Roger brings Aren to come upon an cop named Officer Miller (Tim Baltz), with Roger getting him to open up and be more approachable. Roger invites Miller to join him and Aren that night at a club. When they get there, Miller expresses doubts in himself, but Roger opens the opportunity for Aren to step in and utilize his newfound abilities to reduce Miller’s white tears meter to a healthy level, and also helping them gain entry into the club.

The next day, Aren is set to begin his first day as a Magical Negro by starting work at a company called Meetbox, where his assigned white person is an employee named Jason Mundt (Drew Tarver). As Aren is getting ready, he is contacted by Roger and accidentally bumps into a young woman named Lizzie (An-Li Bogan), spilling her coffee. Aren offers to buy her another coffee, and the two banter while on line until Aren gets called again and has to leave Lizzie.

Aren goes to Meetbox and meets his new boss, Masterson (Michaela Watkins) before being paired up to work with Jason. Aren is then surprised to find that Lizzie also works there. As Aren spends more time at Meetbox, he grows closer to Lizzie and finds himself developing a crush on her. Unfortunately for him, Jason also likes her and considers her his “work wife” (even though Lizzie feels nowhere close to the same way). This means that Aren cannot pursue a relationship with Lizzie because it would make Jason’s white tears meter land on red.

Meetbox encounters controversy because the face recognition software on their app cannot recognize black faces. They dig themselves deeper by posting “we love black faces!” on their app and making their avatar look black too. CEO Mick (Rupert Friend) tries to save face as well, and Aren and Lizzie find their view of Jason ruined when he makes insensitive comments regarding the entire situation, unaware that Lizzie is half-Asian and therefore offended by his words.

Meetbox sets up a livestream event for the company, and Jason is picked to head the presentation and give a speech. Lizzie talks to Masterson about it since she has more experience and her work is better than Jason’s, but Masterson dismisses her. When Aren privately talks to Jason about possibly presenting with Lizzie, Jason callously responds that Lizzie didn’t deserve the opportunity the way he believes that he does.

Aren and Lizzie go for a walk so she can cool down after work. She spills her purse and Aren helps pick up the contents, coming across a party ring that says “SO SWAG” among other things. After spending the afternoon together, Aren and Lizzie nearly kiss until Aren gets called away. He is summoned back to the Society since the magic of the other members is waning due to someone’s actions. Aren fears it’s him until another female member admits she swore at her assigned white person, leading to her losing her powers and being banished from the Society.

Aren starts having to avoid Lizzie so that he won’t run into anymore problems. He also ignores Jason on the day of the presentation until he ends up at work and Jason finds him. Mick and Masterson get ready for the livestream before Jason is set to go up, though he wants Aren to be there with him. When the spotlight hits them, they are in the middle of an argument where Aren confronts Jason over his blasé attitude toward the company’s controversy before he goes into a tirade about how he feels living in a world where people are so uncomfortable with his appearance that he could be killed because of it. Jason then admits that he didn’t think about it through Aren’s point-of-view before Aren runs away and uses his powers to take Lizzie away from Los Angeles to the Empire State Building where he attempts to confess his feelings and kiss her before he gets pulled back to the Society.

Dede and all the other members confront Aren over his incident, but Aren then gives his own impassioned retort over how he no longer wants to have to exist just to make others comfortable. Dede banishes Aren from the Society and has Roger prepare to wipe his memories of everything, including Lizzie. However, when Roger takes Aren away to do it, the spell doesn’t work, because other members of the Society have taken influence from Aren and are now directly confronting their white friends to take accountability for their actions. Aren and Roger part ways before Roger reminds Aren that he left Lizzie stranded in another state.

Aren checks his phone and finds multiple missed calls and messages from Lizzie, so he rushes to try and find her. He manages to catch her getting out of an Uber before he apologizes to her and tries to explain himself. She forgives him and they finally kiss, now able to start their relationship.

Before the credits roll, Lizzie is seen going to a salon where she presents her “SO SWAG” ring as entry to her own secret organization – The Society of Supportive Wives and Girlfriends”.

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Aren Mbondo is a meek and timid black man who always worries about making white people uncomfortable. He is found by Roger, a member of the American Society of Magical Negroes, a secret organization for black folks dedicated to making white people feel comfortable to avoid violent incidents. Aren is assigned to be friends with a guy named Jason by starting to work at the same company as Jason. Aren develops a crush on a young woman named Lizzie, but he is told by the Society to stay away from her because Jason likes her too, and Aren getting with her would make Jason's "white tears" meter go to catastrophic levels.

The company, Meetbox, encounters controversy because their app doesn't recognize black faces. While the company's CEO Mick tries to save face, Aren and Lizzie are disheartened to find that Jason isn't very sympathetic to the controversy and makes insensitive comments. He is also picked to do a presentation for an upcoming livestream over Lizzie, whose work tops Jason's. Aren and Lizzie spend more time together, and she starts to reciprocate his feelings, though he cannot give in to them because whenever a Society member goes against the rules, it affects the magic of the other members.

On the day of the livestream, Aren and Jason get into a heated argument that is seen by everyone, where Aren confronts Jason over his callous behavior toward the controversy, as well as Aren's own living in fear of a world that views people like him as threatening. Jason appears to understand where Aren is coming from, but he flees with Lizzie in an attempt to admit his feelings, but the Society summons him. The Society's president, Dede, banishes Aren and strips him of his powers, but when Roger tries to wipe his memory of the Society and Lizzie, they find that other Society members are following Aren's example and making their white friends hold themselves accountable for their actions.

Aren catches up with Lizzie and apologizes to her for how he was acting, but she forgives him and they are finally able to get together. It is then revealed that Lizzie is part of her own secret organization - The Society of Supportive Wives and Girlfriends ("S.O.S.W.A.G.").