Black Cake: Season 1/ Episode 1 “Covey” – Episode Recap and Review

Mia Isaac as Coventina

“Black Cake” potentially fills the void of having a drama focused on Black people and the Black experience without focusing on people living in an urban area or who are rich and are bickering over status and money.

General Information

This section Includes information about the Director, Writer, and Cast.

Release Date (Hulu)

November 1, 2023


Natalia Leite 


Marissa Jo Cerar 

Newly Noted Characters and Cast

Eleanor (Adult)

Chipo Chung

Byron Bennett

Ashley Thomas


Adrienne Warren

Lin Lyncook

Simon Wan


Lashay Anderson

Gibs Grant

Ahmed Elhaj


Mia Isaac


Faith Alabi

Clarence Henry, aka Little Man

Anthony Mark Barrow

Eleanor (London)

Karise Yansen


Jade Eshete

Plot Recap

This content contains pertinent spoilers about what happened in this episode. Also, images and text in this post may contain affiliate links. If a purchase is made from those sites, we may earn money or products from the company.

The Distant Mother –  Eleanor, Byron, Benny

Eleanor, a mother of two, Byron and Benny, seemingly went out into the ocean to catch a wave or die. She claims she just misjudged a wave and hit her head due to how the wave took her, but the doctors who see her in the hospital are worried. For upon Byron’s arrival, it is revealed it isn’t just a head injury with Eleanor’s legs and ribs also injured, but she has a brain tumor.

Byron, of course, is distraught, but his sister? She and Eleanor have some issues where they haven’t seen one another in years. It isn’t clear what is the source of their conflict, but it seems at least eight years have passed since they saw one another, including when Benny’s dad died six years ago.

In fact, when Eleanor dies, it seems Benny didn’t show up to the funeral and barely made it on time for the will reading. Which is important not just for the kids but Eleanor, for she has ducked and dodged talking about her childhood, even made up a few tales, but now, with seven recordings and a black cake for her children, it seems they will get to genuinely know their mother like never before.

The Girl Filled With Hopes And Dreams –  Bunny, Lin, Gibs, Coventina, Gibs, Pearl, Lin, Clarence

To set the scene, it is the 50s/60s in the West Indies, and the woman we were introduced to as Eleanor, at this point, is answering to her birth name Coventina, or Covey, as her father Lincoln, or Lin, refers to her as. Her mother is around too, a beautiful dark skin woman, but she leaves when Coventina is 11, seemingly due to Lin’s gambling and insecurities.

But, fast forward to when Coventina is 18, things are stable, though maybe not the best. In her mother’s absence comes Pearl, her mother’s friend who looks out for Covey and also works for her dad to do domestic work. She has her best friend Bunny, who she trains with as they both see swimming as their way away from the island and into the world. Also, Covey is dating this boy named Gibbs Grant, who is bound for London to go to law school.

Now, is Lin happy about her dating, at all? No. His daughter is barely 18 and getting caught up with a boy he sees as a distraction. But the thing is, when the Henry Brothers destroy Lin’s shop, after a massive hurricane caused 12 million worth of damage in the area? Guess what Lin does: He basically pimps Covey out to the local loan shark, Little Man, real name Clarence Henry.

As you can imagine, Covey doesn’t want to be with this grown man who has been preying her potentially since she got her first period. So her father pushing her to be nice to him, even marry him to help ease the tension of Clarence and his brothers trying to get their money? She isn’t happy, she feels betrayed, and with thinking no one cares, even on her wedding day, she feels isolated.

Thankfully, after the ceremony, during the reception, Pearl presents Clarence with a cake that kills him, and it seems Covey was given the opportunity to escape in that chaos. From what it appears, she and Bunny were working together in secret, and the goal was to get Covey to London, get hooked up with this place that takes in Caribbean girls, and for her to start a new life, with no contact with anyone, including Gibbs, for the idea was that it would seem Covey went out to sea and died in the water.

Survival Of The Fittest – Eleanor, Coventina

London is a change of pace for Covey, but luckily for her, she has a roommate, Eleanor. She is extroverted, sweet, seems well adjusted, and from what we’re told, Covey may have caused her death.

Other Noteworthy Information 

  1. Created By: Marissa Jo Cerar
  2. Based on the Book By: Charmaine Wilkerson

New Character Description(s)

Eleanor (Adult)

Chipo Chung as Eleanor
“Chipo Chung as Eleanor,” Black Cake, “Covey,” directed by Natalia Leite, 2023, (Hulu)

With two kids and a whole life, being widowed, and a load of secrets, Eleanor seems cool and in control of her life, but like most things, that might just be a ruse.

Byron Bennett

Ashley Thomas as Byron Bennett
“Ashley Thomas as Byron Bennett,” Black Cake, “Covey,” directed by Natalia Leite, 2023, (Hulu)

An ocean scientist, Byron can be seen as Eleanor’s golden child due to how well he is doing professionally. However, in the first episode, how his personal life is going isn’t dove into.


Adrienne Warren as Benny
“Adrienne Warren as Benny,” Black Cake, “Covey,” directed by Natalia Leite, 2023, (Hulu)

Benny is Byron’s sister, seemingly Eleanor’s youngest, who is estranged from her mother and sister for reasons not originally revealed.

Lin Lyncook

Jade Eshete as Mathilda and Simon Wan as Lin Lyncook
“Jade Eshete as Mathilda and Simon Wan as Lin Lyncook,” Black Cake, “Covey,” directed by Natalia Leite, 2023, (Hulu)

Lin is Coventina’s father, an immigrant who went to school on the island, continued the business his parents started, raised a child, and found a wife, yet still feels like an outsider. But, what doesn’t help his situation is he has a gambling problem that led to him becoming vulnerable and driving his wife away.


Lashay Anderson as Bunny
“Lashay Anderson as Bunny,” Black Cake, “Covey,” directed by Natalia Leite, 2023, (Hulu)

Bunny is Coventina’s best friend and swimming partner.

Gibs Grant

Ahmed Elhaj as Gibs Grant
“Ahmed Elhaj as Gibs Grant,” Black Cake, “Covey,” directed by Natalia Leite, 2023, (Hulu)

Gibs is Coventina’s boyfriend back on the island who was London-bound for law school.


Mia Isaac as Coventina
“Mia Isaac as Coventina,” Black Cake, “Covey,” directed by Natalia Leite, 2023, (Hulu)

Eleanor’s original name and who she was on the island and London. Back then, she was a swimmer, a daughter, notable to many boys and men, until it was assumed she died the day of her wedding.


Faith Alabi as Pearl
“Faith Alabi as Pearl,” Black Cake, “Covey,” directed by Natalia Leite, 2023, (Hulu)

Pearl is Coventina’s mother’s best friend who, when she left, was tasked with looking out for her daughter and paid by Lin to keep the household up.

Clarence Henry

Anthony Mark Barrow as Clarence Henry aka Little Man
“Anthony Mark Barrow as Clarence Henry aka Little Man,” Black Cake, “Covey,” directed by Natalia Leite, 2023, (Hulu)

The head of a local loan shark family, Clarence, also known as Little Man, preys on the poor of the island and uses his two brothers to gain leverage and push getting money or property.

Eleanor (London)

Karise Yansen as the original Eleanor
“Karise Yansen as the original Eleanor,” Black Cake, “Covey,” directed by Natalia Leite, 2023, (Hulu)

The original Eleanor, who was also an island girl, who Coventina met in London.


Mathilda is Coventina’s mother.


Notable Performances or Moments

A Quality Black Drama

Despite being weeks since “Black Cake” premiered, it never exited our mind because it is provided Black drama without living in the extremes. Covey’s family isn’t impoverished or live in the life of excess where every other person is a CEO or some kind of president of a company. They are closer to normal, and yes, Bryan is an ocean scientist, but he doesn’t have that airs about him like he is better than thou. I mean, when we meet him, he talks about representation to kids and the importance of that.

And then, when it comes to the drama, there isn’t cheating or anything that feels excessive. Eleanor has been keeping her past life a secret, and with her being an immigrant, you get it. She wanted to reinvent herself because in her original life as Coventina, she got married off to service her father’s debt, she had to runaway to London, where who knows what happened, and then ended up in America where she got married again, and had two kids. One of which holds some kind of grudge, and the other, at the very least, is accepting and understands their mother is a whole person beyond the title given to them.

Episode Directory

Previous Episode Recap/ Review – N/A

Read More Of Our Coverage For This Series

Listed Under Categories: , ,

Black Cake: Season 1/ Episode 1 “Covey”


“Black Cake” can either be a show that maintains its quality and become a major hit, and a much-needed flagpole for Hulu, or it will join the many which had immense potential starting off, before falling off because the idea was good, but the execution was terrible.

  • A Quality Black Drama - 87%
User Review
0 (0 votes)


  • A Quality Black Drama


  • N/A

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.