As we spend the majority of the episode in David’s past, it doesn’t do any favors for when the show refocuses on David’s present/ future.
|Directed By||Kiel Adrian Scott|
|Written By||Lucien Christian Adderley, Richard “Byrd” Wilson|
|Newly Noted Characters|
|Luis||Julian Anthony Martinez|
It Was All Good Just A Week Ago – Luis, David, Rondo, Marissa
While David’s first year at Hurston was quiet and lonely, he was excelling grade-wise. However, eventually, his roommate, Luis, said he was cool, and thus Rondo and his gang of people started to talk to David and befriend him. But when we are reintroduced to David, things are going a little bit south.
First, it is everyone teasing him while he talks to Marissa, who he seemingly hasn’t spoken to in two years. The second issue comes from Luis separating himself from David when Luis’ father shows up, and again he doesn’t have David’s back when Rondo, who is drunk, keeps saying the N-word. An act that leads to David hitting Rondo and only David getting into trouble.
Be Wary When You Are The Outsider – Luis, David, Rondo, Dr. Woods-Trapp, JG, Gloria
With getting suspended, but thankfully not expelled, David finds himself reflecting on what happened between Luis’ lack of support, despite them both being one of the few people of color, or even Rondo getting away with what happened. This leads to David seeking out Dr. Woods-Trapp who retired, but whose e-mail was available. Thus leading her to note two major things: The first being that David needs to learn how to de-escalate situations, and the second is a reminder that, with going to a PWI, what David experienced is the trade-off.
But, luckily for David, while in trouble at school, Gloria has his back, and JG? Well, while he is growing up, he still loves and likes having access to David. So he just asks him about getting boners in class and wet dreams, to which David has all the answers and makes JG glad to know him and have him.
Trust Is Hard To Regain – Luis, David, Rondo
After a week of things cooling off, it seems David is willing to let things be chill. However, with Rondo accusing David of being gay, due to his friendship with Seren, and Rondo accusing Luis of being gay, all hell breaks loose. Luis and David start airing each other out, Rondo hypes it up, and then a swim race is done in which David nearly drowns, and Luis doesn’t seem to care about anything beyond Rondo and his friends’ approval.
Hence why, in the future, it seems David’s only friend is Nicole, and that’s it.
Things To Note | Question(s) Left Unanswered
- Did Seren die or just move far away? The show keeps dancing around what happened to him.
The Complications Of Male Friendship
Close male friendships walk a delicate line. One that, like with close male and female relationships, can only be as strong as how both sides are comfortable with one another in private as well as public. With Luis, in private, David was like a brother to him, and they shared a relationship similar to what JG and David have. However, in public, Luis didn’t have David’s back, and the first opportunity he had to toss David for some clout and to remove himself from the assumption of homosexuality? Luis took that and exposed David having wet dreams, brought up Sky, just used whatever he could to hurt David.
Which, as shown by the first season and the season premiere, David takes to trauma like a fish to water, and I’d submit he never really recovered from Luis’ betrayal.
The Words of Dr. Woods-Trapp
The path for urban youth to be successful often leads to the pushing of PWI institutions as a means of access to opportunity. However, as increasingly shown in media, there is a trade-off in sending a young Black or Brown person to PWIs. There is the issue of tokenism and being the “Other” who lends credibility to their more affluent associates. Also, the possibility of having that wake-up call exists when those like David get too comfortable and potentially forget where they came from.
We see David go through the potential price you pay, and his reactions are what many suppress to stay in these places and have the adjacent prestige. It’s dealing with outright or minor moments of prejudice and being forced to understand the disadvantages you thought you escaped, they have just transmogrified into something else. The worry which was a dangerous environment because of crime, has now become an environment that sees you as the threat when, formerly, you were the least threatening thing around.
Yet, to get out of the hood, you are pushed to these places which were built without ever wanting you to attend, and no matter how many who look like you pass through their halls, you are the exception. An exception someone in admissions thought was exceptional, but for all others? You are someone who doesn’t belong, and no matter what you do, as soon as you challenge their authority or place, they’ll remind you of how their world sees you.
This Episode Didn’t Make Me Want To See Future David Anytime Soon
I really can’t fathom how we’re supposed to get used to, even like adult David. Don’t get me wrong, we’re still early on, but just taking note of all that was said about David as a teen, compared to his introduction as an adult? Honestly, it seems unfair to the actor playing him as a grown man. He has to compete with one of the best Black coming of age stories and an actor who so owns this role that it makes the new guy seem like an imposter.
Teen David’s return makes Adult David look bad and makes you long for when teen David was the focal point for the entire season.