Good Trouble: Season 2, Episode 2 “Torn” – Recap, Review (with Spoilers)

Davia and Dennis cuddling with Davia being the big spoon.
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Drastic moves are made in order to go from surviving to being happy, thriving even, but they naturally come at a cost.


Network
FreeForm
Director(s) Peter Paige
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson
Air Date 6/25/2019
Introduced This Episode
Naomi Denise Dowse
Elijah Denim Richards
Joseph Richard Brooks

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Case Of The Ex: Davia, Jeff, Elijah, Gael, Callie

Despite all the mouth we know Davia has, she is struggling with dumping Jeff, and she tries to take Callie’s drunken advice of making him do the deed, but that doesn’t work. You see, she tries to make it seem that the only way for them to be together would be him moving and her hoping he wouldn’t do it. But, he calls her bluff, and that complicates things.

Elijah (Denim Richards) looking at Gael.
Elijah (Denim Richards)

Switching to Gael, with Callie playing games, he finally moves on, but he moves on in the form of revisiting his ex or, rather, his ex revisiting him. Enter Elijah, a college love interest who wasn’t ready before but seems ready now for a relationship. Though it isn’t clear if Gael might be willing to have things go that far just yet. Even though he is clearly still smitten.

Moving Past The Pain: Joseph, Dom, Malika, Dennis, Davia

Dennis is struggling with his guilt, and while Davia does everything from trying to diet with him to pushing him to join a support group, it isn’t what he wants or needs. From what it seems, he just needs to process and maybe cuddle. Feel like he isn’t as horrible as he has come to think himself or as others said he is.

Malika walking into Joseph's (Richard Brooks) apartment.
Joseph (Richard Brooks)

Which could be Joseph’s situation. You see, for reasons currently unknown, Joseph was in Folsom prison and seemingly Keisha, Dom and Malika’s mom, didn’t clue in his kids to that. Thus, they thought he was a deadbeat. However, Malika tracks him down, and we end things with her in his apartment.

A Complicated Future: Callie, Mariana, Evan, Raj, Jamie, Judge Wilson, Naomi, Malika

So, Malika used Callie’s badge to go off on Judge Wilson, and if it wasn’t for his secretary Naomi, Judge Wilson would have pressed charges. And if you think that is the only thing she got off the hook with, add in Callie isn’t even mad for the situation she caused. Why? Well, it acted as a wake-up call. Callie’s passions were always doused working with Judge Wilson so when he doesn’t fire her over the Malika thing or file, she quits and within weeks has an offer the ACLU. Problem is, she hasn’t passed the bar yet, and she later learns she fails it. Leading her to call Jamie to console her. For while she tells him she needs to be single, that doesn’t mean she doesn’t value his friendship.

Which may not be true when it comes to Evan and Mariana. As you can imagine, things are getting real complicated at Speckulate as Mariana gains influence and has to own up to the responsibilities of being a manager. Something that, in terms of doing the work, is easy. However, like for many, the part in which you deal with people is hard. For example, on top of Raj, Gael is also added to Mariana’s team, which means two less slots for women. Then, on top of that, as Evan seeks for Mariana to replace Josh’s role, it brings a bit of conflict.

For one, Evan has feelings for Mariana so there comes the question how much of her influence, power even, comes with strings attached? Two, Mariana has a sex dream about Evan, which raises some internal conflict. Then, lastly, Evan learns of Mariana and Raj since they have sex in the office. Leading to him pushing Angela, who I could have sworn found a new job, to push HR rules about supervisors and employees. Thus making Mariana dating Raj really difficult, especially if she wants to lead the social movement at Speckulate.

Question(s) Left Unanswered

  1. Of all people, why would Davia listen to Callie for relationship advice?

Highlights

Davia and Dennis

I still don’t want or see them as a couple, but I recognize it is inevitable and perhaps what both people need. For if one thing has become clear is that Davia needs someone who is sometimes willing to fight her battles. Lest we forget, she has had to battle her mom and the world so that she can be comfortable in her own skin. So with this Jeff thing, having someone like him desire her is a hard ass battle and she needs reinforcements. Of which, to save face, only Dennis can be the one running into battle.

Then, on the flip side, Dennis clearly is in the playground of his mind with the devil chasing him all around. He needs someone to take him out of his thoughts and maybe not in the way Davia offers, but her being there is what matters most. Especially in terms of, if she is going to critique him, take him down to his foundation, also be willing to help him rebuild himself. That is as opposed to his wife who broke him down and then left. At least when they last spoke.

Callie Failing Her Exam

All I’m saying is, she quit a hard to get job and got an offer from the ACLU. Two good things have to be met with something bad to keep this show feeling realistic. So her failing her exam is perfect for on top of giving her something to work towards, it means she has to do something in the meantime to bolster herself. Especially since Mariana has this attitude of, “If I’m paying bills, I’m going to need you to pay me back one way or another.” Which, originally was going to be by her doing Mariana’s errands. However, it seems, after some pushback, Mariana may drop that – for now.

Malika

From her meeting her father to Naomi standing up for her, which is a moment in herself, Malika continues to seem, after Mariana and Callie, to be one of the most invested characters on this show. Add in Isaac still around and talking about her meeting his family, what is there not to like? Particularly since, alongside acting as a medium to have a cathartic release, she also gives much-needed representation in so many areas FreeForm hasn’t tapped into previously. Be it a lead who is a medium to dark skin complexion Black girl, or having them so layered that it’s like experiencing a cake with a flaky crust. Just all kinds of delicious.

The Struggles Of Being A Boss

One of the growing issues we’re going to see for Mariana is the issue of transitioning from the leader of a movement to being an actual boss. Not just in terms of being a Latina who is the boss, but the side of leadership which is always a stumbling block: Dealing with people. Because most of us could likely handle the work outside of that, but managing personalities, personal lives, workplace drama, and the HR stuff which can come with that? Most aren’t really prepped for that fully. You just learn on the job, and with Mariana still not picking any women yet, she is in for some difficult decisions and consequences of said decisions.

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Season/ EpisodeSynopsisDirector, Writer, and Introduced ActorsTopics & Focused Characters
Season 2, Episode 4 "Unfiltered"Despite Callie starting a new job, old habits die hard. Also, Davia’s mom, Bonnie, comes to town and reminds us of another reason Davia doesn’t want to go home.
Director(s) Laura Nisbet Peters
Writer(s) Resheida Brady
Air Date 7/9/2019
Introduced This Episode
Bonnie Reagan Pasternak
Gina Rachel Rosenbloom
Marcus Juan Antonio
Teresa Lisandra Tena
  • Pay The Cost To Be A Boss: Gina, Raj, Mariana, Evan
  • Pulling A Callie: Callie, Joseph, Isaac, Malika, Marcus, Teresa
  • Mommie Dearest: Davia, Dennis, Bonnie
Season 2, Episode 3 “Doble Quince”Jazmin decides to have a Doble Quince, and despite it being her party, nearly everyone else’s minds are on other things.
Director(s) Bradley Bredeweg
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson, Ashly Perez
Air Date 7/2/2019
  • A Lady Is Allowed Her Secrets: Malika, Dom, Isaac, Joseph
  • You Can’t Have A Relationship Without Honest Conversations: Joey, Alice, Raj, Mariana, Evan
  • Sometimes Progress Doesn’t Come Soon Enough: Gael, Elijah, Jazmin, Jamie, Callie
Season 2, Episode 1 “Percussions” [Season Premiere]The verdict of the Jamal Thompson case is delivered, Mariana deals with how her personal and professional life has changed, and Alice prepares her next chapter.
Director(s) Peter Paige
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson
Air Date 6/18/2019
Introduced This Episode
Jacob Carter Rush Adkins
  • The Struggle To Move Forward: Dennis, Jacob, Davia, Jeff
  • A Change Gon’ Come: Alice, Joey, Raj, Mariana, Evan
  • Was This The Battle Or Was It The War?:Sandra, Judge Wilson, Malika, Callie, Jamie, Gael
Season 2, Episode 2 "Torn"Drastic moves are made in order to go from surviving to being happy, thriving even, but they naturally come at a cost.
Director(s) Peter Paige
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson
Air Date 6/25/2019
Introduced This Episode
Naomi Denise Dowse
Elijah Denim Richards
Joseph Richard Brooks
  • Case Of The Ex: Davia, Jeff, Elijah, Gael, Callie
  • Moving Past The Pain: Joseph, Dom, Malika, Dennis, Davia
  • A Complicated Future: Callie, Mariana, Evan, Raj, Jamie, Judge Wilson, Naomi, Malika
Season 1, Episode 13 “Vitamin C”Callie facing the camera, after being unable to choose between Gael and Jamie.
Nearly everything comes to a head as Good Trouble ends its first season which thankfully will be followed up by season 2 in June.
Director(s) Joanna Johnson
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson
Air Date 4/2/2019
Introduced This Episode
Viv Riley Go
  • From Another’s Eyes: Viv, Davia, Malika, Dom, Sandra
  • The Truth Will Set You Free And Freedom Is A Dangerous Gift: Mariana, Angela, Josh, Evan, Callie, Sumi, Joey, Meera, Alice, Ben
  • Picking Up The Pieces: Raj, Mariana, Dom, Isaac, Malika, Callie, Jamie, Gael, Davia, Dennis, Alice, Trae, Malika, Jeff
Season 1, Episode 12 “Broken Arted”You may think the title of this episode, “Broken Arted” is about romance but what’ll break your heart is the loss of something, rather someone beyond love.
Director(s) Peter Paige
Writer(s) Megan Lynn, Wade Solomon
Air Date 3/26/2019
Introduced This Episode
Nathan Brandon Barash
  • True Intentions: Raj, Evan, Angela, Mariana, Josh, Malika, Casey
  • A Complicated Relationship: Gael, Bryan, Callie, Jamie, Jasmin, Sumi, Alice, Meera, Joey
  • Goodbye Big Brother?: Mariana, Dennis, Davia, Jeff, Nathan, Jenn
Season 1, Episode 11 “Less Than”Good Trouble dives into varying topics dealing with race from pay gaps, representation, privilege, and also how to be an ally this episode.
Director(s) Bradley Bredeweg
Writer(s) Kimberly Ndombe
Air Date 3/19/2019
  • She’s Still In Love: Alice, Sumi, Meera, Joey
  • In The Minority: Malika, Isaac, Sandra, Mariana, Casey, Evan, Davia, Josh, Angela
  • The Work Drama Continues: Kate, Judge Wilson, Callie, Jamie, Tate
Season 1, Episode 10 “Re-Birthday”What begins as a fun night out, with 0 focus on work, leads to a lot of people addressing current relationships, boundaries, and self-respect.
Director(s) Aprill Winney
Writer(s) Claudia Forestieri, Dan Richter
Air Date 3/12/2019
Introduced This Episode
Brandon David Lambert
  • Communication Issues: Isaac, Malika, Brandon, Dennis, Jamie, Callie, Gael, Bryan
  • Boundary Issues: Sumi, Mariana, Raj, Alice
  • It’s My Party & I’ll Cry If I Want To: Davia, Dennis, Jeff
Season 1, Episode 9 “Willful Blindness”On top of meeting Malika and Alice’s illustrious mothers, and Rebecca’s, someone says goodbye to Good Trouble.
Director(s) Kelli Williams
Writer(s) Lauren Moon
Air Date 3/5/2019
Introduced This Episode
Moe (Malika’s Mom) Karole Foreman
Diane TBD
Trea Lee Chen
Kate Dianne Doan
  • Life In The Closet: Trea, Alice, Joey, Sumi, Meera
  • Identity Issues: Callie, Bryan, Gael, Mariana, Rebecca, Diane, Judge Wilson, Kate
  • A New Kind Of Family: Moe, Dom, Malika, Mariana, Sandra
Season 1, Episode 8 “Byte Club”Rebecca’s past is revealed as she flirts with a future that includes Jesus and Mariana’s Byte Club begins and finds a vital ally of the male staff.
Director(s) Peter Paige
Writer(s) Nicole Paulhus
Air Date 2/26/2019
Introduced This Episode
Tate Zachary Gordon
Angela Heather Mazur
Josh Charlie Bodin
Jesus Noah Centineo
  • When or Where Did I Go Wrong?: Callie, Judge Wilson, Tate
  • Always Be Ready: Dennis, Jesus, Rebecca
  • No Woman Left Behind: Mariana, Casey, Callie, Raj, Rebecca, Angela, Josh, Alex, Ben
Season 1, Episode 7 "Swipe Right"“Swipe Right” is purely about establishing the beginning, possible end, of nearly every characters current or future relationship.
Director(s) Troian Bellisario
Writer(s) Ally Musika
Air Date 2/19/2019
Introduced This Episode
Paul Joe Burke
Isaac Sarunas J. Jackson
Joey Daisy Eagan
Eli Steven Krueger
Lara Alisa Allapach
  • Girls Just Wanna Have Fun: Paul, Isaac, Joey, Eli, Lara, Mariana, Malika, Davia, Alice, Sumi
  • I Can’t Give All, So I Have To Give Nothing: Callie, Gael
Season 1, Episode 6 "Imposter"While the truth helps Callie flourish, Mariana is getting sick and tired of being sick and tired. Also, Jazmin returns and clues us into how difficult her life is.
Director(s) Geoff Haley
Writer(s) Megan Lynn, Wade Solomon
Air Date 2/12/2019
Introduced This Episode
Jennifer Annie Little
  • The Truth Will Set You Free: Judge Wilson, Jamie, Callie, Dennis, Davia, Ben, Jennifer
  • What It’s Like To Be Me: Jazmin, Gael, Callie, Jamie
  • Fight Club: Alex, Raj, Mariana, Casey, Evan
Season 1, Episode 5 "Parental Guidance Suggested"Stef and Lena come to The Coterie and reveal what is going on in their lives, and shine a light on Dennis.
Director(s) Bradley Bredeweg
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson
Air Date 2/5/2019
Introduced This Episode
Dennis Josh Pence
Stef Teri Polo
Lena Sherri Saum
  • Moms Are Coming!: Callie, Gael, Mariana, Malika, Bryan, Davia, Stef, Lena
  • Introducing Dennis: Stef, Dennis
  • The Truth Sets You Free/ Someone Who Understands: Lena, Malika, Callie, Mariana, Gael, Bryan, Ben, Davia
Season 1, Episode 4 “Playing The Game”Mariana and Alice are given the opportunity to stand up for themselves, as Davia and Callie are tasked with a needed shift in an important relationship.
Director(s)Michael Medico
Writer(s)Cristian Martinez
Air Date1/29/2019
Introduced This Episode
LibbyJessica Tuck
JeffChris Sheffield
  • The Boy Back Home: Davia, Jeff, Mariana
  • You Got To Stand Up For Yourself: Mariana, Raj, Casey, Alice, Malika, Sumi, Alex
  • We All Have Our Secrets: Libby, Judge Wilson, Rebecca, Ben, Callie, Malika
Season 1, Episode 3 “Allies”Both Mariana and Callie continue to struggle with office politics as Malika’s activism puts her at odds with her family.
Director(s)Laura Nisbet Peters
Writer(s)Kris Q. Rehl
Air Date1/22/2019
Introduced This Episode
JamieBeau Mirchoff
SandraNicki Micheaux
EvanT.J. Linnard
RajDhruv Uday Singh
SamMax Cutler
JazminHailie Sahar
  • You Make Time For The Things, And People, You Think Are Important: Malika, Sandra, Dom
  • Slowing Down The Train Won’t Mean It Won’t Get To Its Destination: Mariana, Alex, Raj, Sam, Evan, Casey
  • Step Your Game Up: Jamie, Callie, Rebecca, Ben, Judge Wilson, Gael, Bryan, Davia

Season 1/ Episode 1 “DTLA”

Good Trouble is charged with messages of equality mixed in with the relationship (platonic and otherwise) drama fans of its predecessor are used to.

Creator Joanna Johnson, Bradley Bredweg, Peter Paige
Director(s) Jon M. Chu
Writer(s) Joanna Johnson, Bradley Bredweg, Peter Paige
Air Date 1/1/2019
Genre(s) Drama, Young Adult
Good If You Like Progressive TV Programming

Racial & Cultural Diversity

Your Usual 20 Something Drama with Random Sex Partners, Job Anxiety, and Unnecessarily Complicated Relationships

Isn’t For You If You Don’t Like Your TV Programs Being Political
Introduced This Episode
Mariana Cierra Ramirez
Callie Maia Mitchell
Judge Wilson Roger Bart
Casey Chloé Wepper
Rebecca Molly McCook
Ben Ken Kirby
Alice Sherry Cola
Malika Zuri Adele
Gael Tommy Martinez
Davia Emma Hunton

Season 1, Episode 2 “The Coterie”

We got a conversation on bi-sexuality, the backstory of multiple characters and work drama – aka what will probably be the usual from Good Trouble.

Director(s)Peter Paige
Writer(s)Joanna Johnson
Air Date1/15/2019
Introduced This Episode
JudeHayden Byerly
BryanMichael Galante
Dom (Malika’s Brother)J. Mallory McCree
SumiKara Wang
AlexDustin Ingram
  • Let’s Talk About Sex(uality): Jude, Callie, Gael, Bryan, Sumi, Alice
  • The Outsider: Mariana, Alex, Davia
  • I’m Trying Here: Malika, Dom, Callie, Rebecca, Mariana, Ben

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