As Carlotta goes off the deep end, Noah takes a page from Star’s book in being petty and Olivia… well, let’s just say she becomes more annoying than Cassie.
|Writer(s)||Michael C. Martin, Ester Lou Weithers|
|Ryan French||Terrence J|
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Trying To Start Over: Cassie, Xander, Andy
Cassie is truly trying to be legit. Taking note from Carlotta getting out, as noted since this beef began, it isn’t that she necessarily wants Carlotta’s life but is inspired by it. So, to get said life, she lets Andy go and tries to do the same with Xander. Problem is, he invested money in the club and Cassie is lonely. While she might be a strong Black woman, it doesn’t mean she doesn’t like being vulnerable and having a safe place to be.
When shows try to humanize their villain, especially when the villain is a woman, it is often done in a way which feels rushed and a way which undercuts all we’ve seen. Now, I’ll admit that Cassie, the boil on your big toe she is, is starting to grow on me. However, Xander pushes everything I hate about the humanizing process of a villain. First, we got the fact that pro-Black Cassie once was deeply in love with a married white man. On top of that, despite the years which have passed, he still has the ability to mess with her life and potentially destroy her evolving.
There is something really frustrating in seeing that. For with Cassie speaking to Andy about wanting to go legit, making it seem that she isn’t really trying to take Carlotta’s life but follow her example, that alone humanized her enough. The idea that all this back and forth is because the line between love and hate got crossed and even if hated, as long as Carlotta is paying attention to Cassie, that’s enough for her. This idea that, probably for most of her life, Carlotta has shown what is possible and while it takes Cassie a bit to catch up, she usually does.
Making me wish, so badly, the money for this club came from how much of a badass Cassie was touted, if not Christine. Can you imagine Christine pushing up on Cassie thinking the business was supposed to be cleaning her money and Cassie talking about going legit? Us really getting into the nitty-gritty of Christine’s relationship with her kids and them turning their back on what allowed them to start their own businesses? The thing which allows them to even dream of going legit?
All I’m saying is, there was a better path to showing Cassie wanted real change, loves her sister dearly, and Xander throws all that off.
Don’t Mess With My Money: Star, Jackson, Maurice, Noah, Megan
With Star seeing a royalty check being cut in half because Maurice was the producer, she is pissed. I’m talking acting seriously reckless, even when pregnant, pissed. Leading to Jackson feigning he is ride or die when really he is just trying to make sure Star doesn’t endanger herself or the baby. Much less, when Star steals Maurice’s super bowl ring, he gets it back so Star doesn’t have their baby in jail.
But Star isn’t Maurice’s only problem. Noah doesn’t like the terms of his deal so when Maurice plays hardball, Noah goes to Maurice’s ex-wife, Megan, to help him. Someone who Maurice cheated on, after his career ended abruptly, so it seems she is in the mood for some revenge.
It will never cease to amaze me all that Star can get away with and still have a career. She can get kicked out of clubs, throw bottles, break into people’s offices and steal prized possessions, yet nothing really happens. If that isn’t white privilege, I don’t think I understand the concept. Can you imagine Alex, even Simone doing this and getting away with it? But I guess pity, or maybe some kind of white girl charm, keeps all these negroes from having a Ruby moment and coming at Star upside her head or with cops behind them.
Leading to the thought, what will her comeuppance be? Every now and then there is some attempt at taking Star down a notch. It has been a long time and I think we’re due for something to happen. More than likely it will be Jackson, who is growing close to Star in ways most guys don’t, probably dying. You know how this show operates.
As for this Maurice and Noah thing? Petty. Yet also borderline unnecessary. Doesn’t Noah got enough to deal with at home with his dad? We really going to bring him into the relationship Maurice has with his ex-wife? I get this is a drama, of an almost soap opera variety, but there are times you have to think to yourself, why not do something with what you already have? Deal with the issues already established?
I mean, Maurice and Cassie clearly don’t see eye to eye on everything. Trying to co-run a business could have been more than enough for Maurice’s storyline and could have boosted Cassie as well. She calls herself a boss, but seeing her trying to be one in the music world could have added to her quest for legitimacy. For as much as her snagging Noah could be seen as part of that, imagine Cassie and Maurice both being presented with Megan interfering in their business? Imagine Maurice, which he hopefully does, coming to Cassie asking why Noah’s contract had all these opportunities for him to act like he owns them.
You see where I’m getting at here?
You’re Doing Too Much: Cotton, Carlotta, Alex, Derek, Olivia, Ryan
To keep her mind off Jahil, if not honor him, Carlotta isn’t sleeping and is stressing herself out. Leading Cotton to worry since, between a panic or heart attack, if not a psychotic break, one of the three is on the horizon. Yet, with only 4 months left on the deal she made with Mateo, she has to have something big happen. So, trying to work with this guy Ryan, she has come up with a major showcase. Problem is, Ryan doesn’t like Mateo but does like Alex. Someone who was supposed to have an epic solo but that gets ruined by Olivia.
You see, on top of watching her secretly, wanting Derek, and yet seemingly wanting to share the spotlight with Alex, she decides to have an unplanned duet with Alex. This puts a serious damper on Carlotta’s plans and leads Alex to being upset. However, guilty feelings about Olivia’s sister lead to forgiveness and so Alex enables Olivia’s crazy to pop out at another time.
Probably one of the main reasons I’m starting to get into Cassie, and her potential, is because poor man’s Normani is getting on my nerves in a way Cassie doesn’t. Plus, at least Cassie has long-term potential. I’m talking, if her life gets threatened, you could feel for her and maybe cry over it. Olivia? With her stalking and the madness she clearly has? Paired with Alex’s guilt allowing her to forgive the girl vs. snapping on her and sending her away? It’s frustrating on so many levels.
Then when you consider Olivia probably has more than enough footage for a sex tape? Just as a contingency plan – it makes things even worse. But, the one good thing about Star is you know that anyone whose name isn’t seen in the theme song, especially if they aren’t at the tail end, it means they are up for being killed off or disappearing as Ayanna did – abruptly. So here is hoping Olivia gets a mid-season dismissal vs. being in it for the long haul.
Switching up to Carlotta, considering we see how committed in next week’s episode, that’s going to be interesting. We having seen someone in a mental hospital since Simone was committed after it seeming she attempted suicide. Maybe we may finally get a character who sees the power of therapy sometimes trumps a good prayer.
I Believe In You: Simone, Nina
With what everyone else has going on, it’s not that hard to forget about Simone. After being towards the front of the class because of her being in and out of court, being traumatized, again and again, Simone seemingly has normalcy. Well, her new normal of attaching herself to powerful women anyway. It took, for a little while, with Carlotta until she showed herself as having too tight a leash, Ayanna was an okay since she was very laissez-faire, but Nina maybe just right. She doesn’t try to control Simone but she does have expectations of her.
Making it seem Simone may have a bit of a mommy complex. Maybe not in a sexual way but definitely, maybe to connect with her otherness, seeks women who look like her to fill the role Mary can’t right now. Much less, Star has tried to but can’t.
Other Noteworthy Facts & Moments
- Andy, despite being told to leave Atlanta, ends up at Carlotta’s doorstep after being hit by a car and chased by Ruby’s rapist.
- Derek nearly gets arrested fighting the gang Mike-Mike is in.
Question(s) Left Unanswered
- So is Miss Bruce Take 3’s manager or not?
- Don’t you think Andy dying at Carlotta’s house would become a big thing and trouble for Gravity Media?
Collected Quote(s) & .Gifs
- Star starting to allow herself to rely on a guy, if not understand that she is a lot to be with and she loves that Jackson sticks around despite that.
On The Fence
- For Alex and Cassie, they deserve so much better – storyline wise.
- Noah bringing Maurice’s ex-wife into their issues would have been cooler if Cassie was more involved with the business and not Xander.
- Whatever is or may happen with Simone and Nina.
- How Carlotta having a mental breakdown will be handled.
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