Black Love returns and the focus is what did our couples learn from past relationships and marriages which makes their current one so strong?
|Director(s)||Codie Elaine Oliver|
|Herself||Gillian Iliana Waters|
|Himself||Michael Jai White|
Images and text in this post may contain affiliate links which, if a purchase is made from those sites, I may earn money or products from the company. Most affiliate links contain an upward facing, superscript, arrow.
Dating With A Purpose: Jo-Ann, Glynn, Jay, Niecy
When it comes to Glynn, Jo-Ann, Jay, and Niecy, ain’t a shy one between the four. Glynn, after his marriage, at the time, ended, saw this woman, 13 years his junior, and was just staring. She said something, he replied back, and though it took her months to realize he wasn’t married, they got together. Mind you, there were some weeks he disappeared because he was insulted by the idea she thought he was the kind of man who would have an affair, but what did she know? After all, it wasn’t like he was married to a nobody – he was married to Aretha Franklin!
Which seemingly did a number on him since he thought, after her, and his first marriage, he wasn’t going to do that again. Yet, for some reason, after ten years and one child, it was a normal night and he felt compelled to propose.
Switching to Niecy and her husband Jay, things weren’t necessarily easy for them either. At least, at first. After 16 years with her first husband, who deserves some credit since he did give her the ability to get her career started, it was over. Enter Jay, within a year and a half of being divorced and she got this man who is direct with her. Hitting every hard question about children, if you are divorced and, presenting the idea he dates with purpose. Not because he is lonely, wants a housekeeper, or someone to mess around with on the regular. Jay was dating for marriage.
Something that, by the way Nash presents it, him being linear and methodical made him seem boring. However, seeing him with another woman, laughing, showing a side he apparently didn’t during their date, that got her mind right. Add in how he approached marrying her by promising her kids nothing but honesty and consistency, just as he would their momma, and it seems she was sold. Hence why they’ve been married 7 years and counting.
One of the big takeaways, for me, when it comes to these two couples is how misconception nearly put an end to what could have been. Jo-Ann thinking Glynn was a philanderer and Niecy thinking Jay was boring could have led to them not having the man they have been with for years. Which isn’t me saying that if a dude bores you, you should stick around to see what happens or reject gut feelings. More so, it’s like Nash says, people are created to love yet they struggle most with it. In both cases, the women saw the worse in order to quickly move on and forget about these men. Yet, as the men revealed who they were, or perhaps are, the women secured what they felt they needed in their life.
And I highlight that because we live in a world largely shaped by someone else’s perception of romance and what is acceptable. Especially women since they are sold ideals far more than men, as well as criticized for their decisions. So to hear about two women, Black women, who were very proactive in making sure this guy didn’t get away, despite some apprehension, seems rather important. For I’m sure there are many who question if it is their gut, anxiety, or what, and seeing women take a leap of faith, rather than wait on the dude to come back to them, was interesting.
Reunited: Danelle, Bobby
You already know when it comes to Black Love, sometimes it just means one half is Black. Such is the case with Danelle and Bobby but, I gotta admit, they are one of the cutest couples we’ve met. Primarily because their love story, which suffered an unfortunate 27-year gap, really pushes the idea love conquers all. It defeated Bobby’s father’s bigotry, it outlasted time and other relationships, and look where these two are now. Happy, sitting on a couch, sharing details of him committing to her in ways which made him feel necessary.
I had to single these two out and not because of the interracial aspect, but the way Danelle talked about Bobby being in her life. She makes it clear, after her divorce, she had a full life. She had friends, activities, and didn’t think she had space or time for love. Yet, romanticizing it a bit, it could be the space Bobby took up in her heart never got vacated. Hence why both, when social media began, I’m talking back when MySpace mattered, they looked for one another. For while there were others, they didn’t compare to what, for her, was the first.
But, another thing which makes them unique is they bring up arguments. Something Niecy sort of brings up when it comes to her marriage, but it is mostly in the form of her being clear and not wasting time. With Danelle and Bobby, however, it is about her recognizing she is independent and stubborn, yet she must learn to compromise.
Which represents something that is worth seeing for both sides. Clearly, Danelle is the type of woman who doesn’t need a man but wants Bobby. She clearly can handle her finances, find fun things to do, but likes this man in particular to accompany her. Meaning Bobby has to accept, a lot of time, Danelle may not need him to be the man of the house but just her man. On the flip side, Danelle notes in many an argument she seemingly is ready to pack Bobby’s stuff and kick him out. So comes the need to ask and realize, as much as you can do bad by yourself, are you willing to burn a bridge over something which can be sent downstream?
Giving us, ultimately, some tips for both being an independent, sometimes stubborn, Black woman and being someone who loves them.
Putting Myself First: Tina, Richard, Gillian, Michael
When it comes to Tina, Michael, and Gillian, we are presented with people who like to put others first. Tina, famously, put her children’s career first and from doing their hair to costume designs, seemed to have lost who Tina was to assume the role of Beyoncé mom. Perhaps in a similar fashion to how Jada Pinkett-Smith said she lost herself on Red Table Talk. As for Gillian and Michael? They present themselves as the therapist of their friend groups. Meaning they’d often put everyone’s emotions and feelings before their own. Leading, so it seems, to them being cordial and nice towards one another, but not necessarily willing to make any leaps.
That is, until Michael had an allergic reaction to some Tylenol and he confessed his feelings. For Tina, she also kind of needed the same kick in the butt. However, you have to take note that when it came to being with Richard, there was history.
Their kids grew up together, they both knew each other through them being someone else’s spouse, so they had to rediscover the other person. Also, as vibrant as Mrs. Lawson is shown to be at times, it is hinted this is fairly new. After Matthew, and that drama, she didn’t have the same drive and knowledge of self as she has now. Yet, through this woman name Monica, who we all could use one of, Blue, and recognizing what you got as it reminds you it’s there, she accepted a new love.
One thing you have to love about Mrs. Lawson participating in this is because she found love after being a certain age. It’s one thing to see it with Aunt Vi on Queen Sugar, but that’s a fictional character. Mrs. Lawson is a living and breathing person who, as accomplished as her life is, as much as she has had a hand in some of the biggest careers in music, she struggled with love just like anyone else.
Yet, look at her now. She got a man who empowers her, loves her, and she can do a two-step with. Also, he is a man who recognizes that, like Niecy’s husband Jay, to love them is to love who they are to other people as well. You can’t just love the woman and not love the mom. Making Richard note he asked Beyoncé and Solange for Mrs. Lawson’s hand in marriage not just sweet but essential. For as important as you are, they came before you and are physically of her. You can’t compete or be parallel to that relationship. One means or another, you have to find a way to become part of it.
Leading to Michael and Gillian. All I can say is that Sterling and Ryan may have competition for one of the cutest couples on this show now. For while Michael may not be giggling and seeming like a kid you are talking to about his favorite thing, and Gillian isn’t jokingly rolling her eyes, there is something so cute about them. I can’t put my finger on it but maybe it is because the way they frame their relationship sounds cinematic in a way. Two people who had feelings for one another but neither made that leap until one thought death was coming for them. Making it where, after realizing it was a false alarm, they realized the easy-going nature is what they should have secured for their lives. For the work they had to put into past relationships? Clearly, that was not what was meant to be more than a lesson. A hard learned lesson.
Collected Quote(s) & .Gifs
The funny thing about it, is that it’s [love] the very thing that we were created for, yet it’s the place we struggle the most.
“He will always prepare you for, what he has prepared for you”
– Niecy Nash
If you are out there and you want to attract somebody, fall in love with yourself.
– Tina Lawson
- With each couple, you don’t feel like they are telling you a story with some anecdotes to make you laugh. It’s like, they found love with a Black person, and you can too and this is the method they found which worked. Be it handing things like Richard and Jay, which called for being very direct, sometimes putting yourself out there and stepping back, like Glynn did, or recognizing a good thing when you see it. Because, sometimes, like in the case of Gillian and Michael, the perfect person has been there and while they haven’t just been waiting around, sometimes you just gotta make a confession and have follow
- Recognizing how much knowing what you want matters in dating and knowing who you are.
- With Danelle, showing a strong, independent Black woman in a happy marriage. One which has its issues, because she knows she doesn’t need Bobby, but she makes concessions and compromises because she wants Bobby and he proves himself worthy of her time.
- The fact Codie, once or twice, jumped in for follow up questions.
- You know Niecy Nash has a talk show coming right? Well, based off the advice she gives in this episode, and her consistency, this is some of the best promo a person could ask for.
On The Fence
- Naturally, no one can put their ex on blast. Especially Tina and Glynn because their exes are well known, and one of them recently passed. However, it would have been interesting to hear more about what they did wrong or their spouse did which informed their current relationships.
Follow Wherever I Look on Twitter, Like us on Facebook and Subscribe to the YouTube Channel.