The Chi: Season 2, Episode 9 “Guilt, Viral Videos, and Ass Whuppings” – Recap, Review (with Spoilers)

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As the show preps for Brandon’s exit, it becomes clear there is more than enough going on that his time can be used well.


Network
Showtime
Director(s) Tanya Hamilton
Writer(s) J. David Shanks, Joe Wilson
Air Date 6/9/2019
Introduced This Episode
Lonnie Gaines AC Smith

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Someone’s Watching You: Ronnie, Tracy, Detective Cruz

With Cruz busting Ronnie for a DUI, he is put on notice that, one way or another, Cruz will put him back in jail. However, with Tracy’s surprise return, someone seems to be looking out for Ronnie so that doesn’t happen. Though whether she is ready to help him deal with his issues of rejection or not is a whole different thing. Especially since she is still healing, and with Shante talking about moving south, she may not have the strength to be someone’s rock right now.

Kids Will Be Kids: Papa, Maisha, Nina, Kevin, Jake, Brandon

Kevin holding drugs for Jake becomes an issue since Michael snitched. Leading to Nina learning about that and the opportunity to go to North Side Academy. But things really come to a head when he embarrasses her and curses at her in public – leading to an ass whipping.

However, all things considered, the Maisha situation might be Kevin’s biggest moment. That is, the biggest moment of the episode which shows the boy is slowly becoming trash. For while Brandon tries to talk to the kid, help him see how good life is and how his friends’ influence aren’t making things better, the boy isn’t there yet. He still holds onto what his school and friends mean so strongly that he disses Maisha when it is revealed the two kissed. This is despite her being the one person who has been a bit weird, like licking him, but otherwise a good person in his life.

It Gets Real Sometimes: Detective Toussaint, Douda, Emmett, Tiff, Ricky, Keisha, Brandon, Detective Cruz, Lonnie Gaines, Reg

Lonnie Gaines (AC Smith) being questioned by Detective Toussaint and Cruz.
Lonnie Gaines (AC Smith)

Brandon is in some deep mess right now and doesn’t even know it. Toussaint is picking up steam and starting to connect the dots. She picks up on Lonnie Gaines, owner of Family C realty, boss of the white woman who died, is a former 63rd gang member. She even learns he shared a cell with Walter Burkes when in prison. Add in Douda’s pizza boxes showing up around Brandon’s guarded truck, and this leads to her meeting Brandon and thinking he could be a potential informant. Though with Cruz tipping him off a bit, that might make that difficult.

However, the real issue might be, after confronting Douda, Toussaint’s son gets assaulted to send a message. Also, on top of tipping Brandon off about Toussaint, Cruz reveals he played a role in Coogie being killed. Something we don’t see Brandon’s full reaction to.

But, outside of Brandon, Emmett has stuff going on too. The likely lead once Brandon makes his exit learns Tiff is pregnant and this comes on the heels of not only winning Keisha back but getting involved with Reg. How? Well, Brandon calls in Reg to help with Emmett’s issues with Ricky – who he sees with another teen girl. So now, depending on how closely Brandon is being followed, Sonny’s and Emmett may soon be on the cops radar.

Other Noteworthy Facts & Moments

  • Walter Burkes founded the 63rd Street Mob and has a life sentence.

Commentary

Oh, They Going To Make Writing Brandon Off Something

It isn’t clear how Brandon was written off or if they’ll clean that up in the season 3 premiere. All that is clear based on this episode, and the preview for the next, is it is going down. However, rather than get shot up, it seems he may just get a jail sentence. One that won’t necessarily explain Jerrika’s absence nor what that may mean for Greavy since it isn’t like the man is seen without Brandon. Much less, whether that means Hannibal too will be collateral damage.

But hey, part of accountability isn’t just HR and the showrunner checking someone. Your peers got to be involved as well since everyone can be replaced or written off. Well, unless your contract has you locked in.

Child Abuse Chat

It’s weird in a way how Jake, Papa, and Kevin spoke about getting ass whoopings. Maybe it is because I’m older and find the idea abusive, but watching these kids just treat it as a thing which happens, something normal, was interesting. Especially as Papa makes it clear the lengths his parents would go to whoop his behind.

Highlights

Brandon and Kevin Chat

One of the things I’ll miss when Brandon exits are these chats between him and Kevin. Not to say Emmett can’t step in, as the show has been prepping him to do, but it won’t be the same. Yeah, Emmett is making smart moves and getting his life together, but Kevin has more than one reason to never mind Emmett and blow him off. On top of that, I can’t imagine Kevin breaking down and crying around Emmett and it not seeming forced.

Papa Stepping Up

As shown throughout the show, Papa doesn’t really need to be stuck in Kevin’s orbit. He has presence, charisma, and jokes, which makes it so he can venture out and I’m glad he did with those girls. Granted, can’t tell you a thing about any of the girls he talked to besides them being his competition for that flat screen. However, with the kids getting older and Brandon’s pending absence, there does come the question whether it will be filled with new characters or dividing time up with old ones? My hope is, like Emmett is being set up for more, we’re seeing Papa finally get a life outside of Jake and Kevin’s drama.

R. Kelly Ain’t The Only One

While the Ricky storyline isn’t huge, you have to appreciate the show pointing out you don’t necessarily have to be famous or in the industry to do as R. Kelly, allegedly (said for legal reasons), does. All you need is some influence. Which really puts into perspective how dangerous it is out here for young people considering how easy it is for many in a mentor role to take advantage of them. Whether they are from an urban area, never mind under the oppression of poverty, or not.

Toussaint v. Douda

Generally, Toussaint seems like a badass and has barely trembled no matter who she is talking to. However, her voice got shaky with Douda, and I don’t know if that was on purpose or not, but that was one hell of a scene. The kind which pushes you to understand Curtiss Cook is not one to play with. I mean, the man was calm and cool, no yelling or cursing really, and got this actor talking in such a way you don’t know if it is part of the character or genuine. Who else do you know that can do that?

On The Fence

The Way Emmett Asked Out Keisha

I would love to see Emmett and Keisha as cute, but him going to her school like that was creepy. He, an adult by age and responsibility, went to a high school, forced this girl to leave class by using the main office staff, just to ask her out. All while knowing she was dating a pedophile and trying to win her over with expensive gifts. There is something toxic here that you want to look past, but it is hard.

Detective Cruz

Again, I’m cool and understand there has to be a cop presence on this show. My problem is Cruz just ain’t the one to rep how complicated the life is. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still glad his home life has been cut out. Yet, him reminding us he set Ronnie up and revealing that to Brandon just seemed like a time filler. Granted, I did forget he is the reason for Coogie’s death and Ronnie causing it, but there is just something about that character which seems inauthentic to me. Like we aren’t getting someone rooted in being human, but he is there just to deliver a message about how hard and complicated it is to be a cop.

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Season/ EpisodeSynopsisEpisode InformationTopics & Focused Characters
Season 2, Episode 7 “Blind Eye”Alongside venturing into Detective Cruz’s past, part Detective Toussaint’s is revealed, and Jerrika makes a big move. As does Douda to make sure Brandon becomes a fat fish.
Director(s) Becca Rodriguez
Writer(s) Cinque Henderson, J. David Shanks
Air Date 5/26/2019
Introduced This Episode
Detective Moreno Elliot Villar
  • The Truth Can Set You Free, If You Tell It: Detective Cruz, Detective Moreno, Emmett, Kevin, Ricky
  • A Little Sunshine After The Storm: Ronnie, Jada, Miss Ethel
  • Planning The Next Move: Brandon, Otis, Jerrika, Greavy, Detective Cruz, Detective Toussaint
Season 2, Episode 8 “Lean Into It”As we approach the season finale and know certain people are going to be written off, you’re left to question if others may join them?
Director(s) Salli Richardson-Whitfield
Writer(s) Terri Kopp
Air Date 6/2/2019
Introduced This Episode
Malcolm Cayen Martin
  • Education Doesn’t Change Everything: Malcolm, Kevin, Jake, Mr. Gasca
  • Off The Wagon: Ronnie, Jada, Emmett, Sonny, Shante, Detective Cruz
  • Know Who You Playing With: Jerrika, Brandon, Otis, Reg, Alderman Bonner, Detective Cruz
Season 2, Episode 9 “Guilt, Viral Videos, and Ass Whuppings”As the show preps for Brandon’s exit, it becomes clear there is more than enough going on that his time can be used well.
Director(s) Tanya Hamilton
Writer(s) J. David Shanks, Joe Wilson
Air Date 6/9/2019
Introduced This Episode
Lonnie Gaines AC Smith
  • Someone’s Watching You: Ronnie, Tracy, Detective Cruz
  • Kids Will Be Kids: Papa, Maisha, Nina, Kevin, Jake, Brandon
  • It Gets Real Sometimes: Detective Toussaint, Douda, Emmett, Tiff, Ricky, Keisha, Brandon, Detective Cruz, Lonnie Gaines, Reg
Season 2, Episode 10 “The Scorpion and The Frog” [Season Finale]While we already knew certain characters wouldn’t make it past this season, additional names get added, and it becomes clear there is a lot of change on the horizon.
Director(s) Jet Wilkinson
Writer(s) Ayanna Floyd Davis
Air Date 6/16/2019
Introduced This Episode
Mr. Bennett Richard Gant
  • Making Time To Heal: Ronnie, Brandon, Mr. Bennett, Tracy, Jada, Miss Ethel
  • Sometimes Apologies Work, Other Times They Don’t:Jada, Emmett, Darnell, Jerrika, Brandon, Maisha, Kevin, Papa, Tiffany
  • You Gotta Prep For What’s Coming: Detective Toussaint, Brandon, Douda, Reg, Jake, Jerrika
Season 2, Episode 6 "A Leg Up"The ladies of The Chi continue to get a voice as Keisha gets features and Emmet’s past partners. Alongside this, Brandon decides to get a leg up and Ronnie reveals a trigger to Jada.
Director(s) Cheryl Dunye
Writer(s) Justin Hillian, Dime Davis
Air Date 5/12/2019
Introduced This Episode
Ricky Levenix Riddle
Neva N.K. Gutierrez
Shay Danyelle Monson
  • Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman: Keisha, Ricky, Maisha, Kevin
  • The Past Haunts You: Ronnie, Jada, Jake, Kevin
  • Trying To Get A Leg Up: Jerrika, Ms. Brown, Alderman Boner, Brandon, Emmett, Neva, Shay, Dan, Tiff, Otis, Darnell, Greavy
Season 2, Episode 4 “Showdown”Jerrika and Brandon’s relationship gets tested as Ronnie learns he will be paying restitution for a long time.
Director(s) Carl Seaton
Writer(s) Casallina Kisakye
Air Date 4/28/2019
Introduced This Episode
Ms. Brown Jacqueline Williams
Alderman Boner Phillip Edward Van Lear
  • When Problems Arise: Kevin, Keisha, Reg, Jake, Maisha, Papa, Douda (Mr. Perry), Detective Toussaint
  • Can’t Always Be There When You Want: Jada, Darnell, Emmett, Jerrika, Brandon, Tiffany, Ms. Brown, Alderman Boner
  • Restitution: Ronnie, Ethel, Jada, Tracy, Shanté
Season 2, Episode 5 “Feeling The Heat”It’s an episode of redemption, sweetness, and perhaps a rare reprieve in The Chi. Well, before it likely goes to hell.
Director(s) Jet Wilkinson
Writer(s) Ayanna Floyd Davis, Joe Wilson
Air Date 5/5/2019
  • Clipping At The Knees: Detective Toussaint, Detective Cruz, Reg, Douda
  • Restitution: Rafiq, Jada, Emmett, Ronnie
  • Come Together, Over Me: Brandon, Kevin, Emmett, Douda, Reg, Keisha, Nina
Season 1/ Episode 1 “Pilot”The Chi seems like the evolved form of the urban dramas which dominate Black late 80s through early 00s nostalgia.
Network
Showtime
Creator Lena Waithe
Director(s) Rick Famuyiwa
Writer(s) Lena Waithe
Noted Cast
Brandon Jason Mitchell
Jerrika Tiffany Boone
Coogie Jahking Guillory
Laverne Sonja Sohn
Ronnie Ntare Guma Mbaho Mwine
Tracy Tai’isha Davis
Kevin Alex R. Hibbert
Jake Michael Epps
Papa Shamon Brown Jr.
Andrea Mariah Gordon
Emmett Jacob Latimore
Keisha Birgundi Baker
Mr. Gasca José Antonio García
Jada Yolonda Ross
Sarah Kristina Emerson
Season 1/ Episode 2 “Alee”The Chi still treats its female characters dirty, but as it delves deeper into Chicago post-Jason and Coogie’s death, there is hope for others.
Director(s) David Rodriguez
Writer(s) Elwood Reid and Lena Waithe
Release Date  1/6/2018
Catch Up or Follow Along [External]
Characters Introduced
Ethel LaDonna Tittle
Quentin Steven Williams
Sonny Cedric Young
Miss Tiny Erica Watson
Alderman Martinez Sammy A. Publes
Maisha Genesis Denise Hale
Nina Tyla Abercrumbie
Detective Wallace Brian King
Detective Cruz Armando Riesco
Meldrick Byron Bowers
Tiffany Hannah Hall
  • Somebody Got To Look Out For Those Struggling: Emmett, Jada, Quentin
  • And It Was All Going So Well: Ronnie, Tracy, Kevin, Maisha, Jada
  • You Killed The Wrong Kid And Will Suffer The Consequences: Ronnie, Brandon, Laverne, Jerrika, Detective Cruz
Season 1/ Episode 3 “Ghosts”As Ronnie’s life continues to get complicated, the women of The Chi finally begin to be developed – somewhat.
Director(s) David Rodriguez
Writer(s) Adam Glass and Ayanna Floyd Davis
Air Date 1/21/2018
Characters Introduced
Trice Tosin Morohunfola
Reg Barton Fitzpatrick
Amir Behzad Dabu
Habib Amro Salama
  • Episode Focus: You Need To Get Your S*** Together | Laverne, Brandon, Jerrika, Ronnie, Detective Cruz, Kevin
  • Subplot 1: Money Is a Major Issue | Emmett
  • Subplot 2: When Money Isn’t an Issue At All | Quentin, Jerrika, Trice
Season 1/ Episode 4 “Quaking Grass”Violence begets violence, and there can never be peace as long as revenge links together like chains. In other words, things only get worse for damn near everyone.
Director(s) Tanya Hamilton
Writer(s) Elwood Reid, Justin Hillian, Mike Flynn
Air Date 1/28/2018
Characters Introduced
Greavy David Alan Anderson
  • Episode Focus: I Got Shot | Ethel, Jada, Ronnie, Brandon, Kevin, Jake, Reg, Jerrika, Detective Cruz
  • Subplot 1: Poking The Bear | Quentin, Trice, Detective Wallace
Season 1/ Episode 5 “Today Was A Good Day”While the title of the episode maybe, “Today Was a Good Day” that doesn’t necessarily apply to most of the characters on the show.
Director(s) Darren Grant
Writer(s) Marcus Gardley
Air Date 2/11/2018
Characters Introduced
Hannibal Chris De’Sean Lee
Tep Ronald L. Conner
JB Curtis Toler
Kasim Bassam Abdelfattah
Demetrius Gregory Fenner
  • You Got To Put In That Work To Get Paid: Jake, Emmett, Amir, Reg
  • Trying To Bring Back Some Peace: Q, Sonny, Brandon, Hannibal, Kevin, Maisha
  • Ain’t No Party Without Some Drama: Jerrika, Brandon, Q, Reg, Ronnie, Tracy
Season 1/ Episode 6 “Penetrate a Fraud”As Brandon and Sarah grow closer, a major piece of evidence comes into Detective Cruz’s hand. Though considering the moves Quentin is making, Jason may not remain his focus for long.
Director(s) Roxann Dawson
Writer(s) Casallina Kisayke
Air Date 2/18/2018
Characters Introduced
Shante Aeriel Williams
Becky Melissa Carlson
  • Redemption Moves: Emmett, Amir, Ronnie, Detective Cruz
  • O.G. Movements: Quentin, Trice, Reg, Tep, JB
  • Jerrika Who?: Brandon, Sarah, Laverne, Greavy
Season 1/ Episode 7 “The Whistle”People pay for their deeds, good or otherwise, and while some are as sweet as a kiss, others are as brutal as a bullet.
Director(s) David Rodriguez
Writer(s) Lena Waithe, Dime Davis
Air Date 2/25/18
Newly Noted
Luis Steve Casillas
Det. Ed O’Malley Guy Massey
  • You Just A Pawn In A Game: Kevin, Andrea, Maisha
  • Doing The Right Thing Doesn’t Mean You Won’t Be Punished (Part 1): Brandon, Luis, Sarah, Detective Cruz, Jerrika
  • Doing The Right Thing Doesn’t Mean You Won’t Be Punished (Part 2): Quentin, Sonny, Emmett, Trice, Reg, Jada
Season 1/ Episode 8 “Wallet”As Brandon figures out how to start his next chapter, Quentin treks backwards to prove a point to Trice and Reg of who not to f*** with.
Director(s) Tanya Hamilton
Writer(s) Adam Glass, Marcus Gardley
Air Date 3/4/2018
Characters Introduced
Chauncey Brad Walker
Mr. Wu Wai Yim
  • I Just Wanna See My Son: Emmett, Tiffany
  • I’m Just Trying To Have Something of My Own: Jerrika, Hannibal, Brandon
  • You Better Watch Out For Your Friends and Family: Kevin, Jake, Papa, Quentin, Reg, Ronnie, Meldrick
Season 1/ Episode 9 “Namaste Muthaf*ka”What goes around comes around isn’t just about karma in this episode, but also what happens in darkness will eventually be exposed by the sun. Whether you walk into the light or not.
Director(s) Zenta Fuentes
Writer(s) Adam Glass, Sylvia L. Jones
Air Date 3/11/2018
Characters Introduced
Dek Ivan Ellis
  • Stepping Up: Emmett, Jada, Ronnie, Ethel, Detective Cruz, Detective Wallace
  • Trying to be Big Homey/ We Need To Talk: Reg, Kevin, Papa, Jake, Quentin, Detective Wallace, Laverne, Tracy
  • What Was In The Dark Comes to Light, And It Isn’t Always Something Evil and Disgusting – Just Uncomfortable: Jerrika, Brandon, Luis, Sarah, Ronnie
Season 1/ Episode 10 “Ease On Down The Road”The Chi ends in a polar opposite way to how it began. There is peace, little to no drama, and rather than focusing on endings, it is all about new beginnings. Though not necessarily of the positive kind.
Director(s) Justin Tipping
Writer(s) Elwood Reid
Air Date 3/18/18
  • Curtain Call: Trice, Jason, Detective Wallace, Quentin, Reg, Jake, Kevin, Papa, Andrea, Maisha
  • The Job Of a Father: Emmett, Tiffany, Jada
  • Closure: Ronnie, Brandon, Jerrika, Reg, Laverne, Detective Cruz
Season 2, Episode 2 "Every day I'm Hustlin'"As the investigation into Miss Ethel’s attack begins, it appears Ronnie may get out, and Brandon may have more issues than Reggie.
Director(s) Darren Grant
Writer(s) Joe Wilson
Air Date 4/14/2019
Introduced This Episode
Darnell Rolando Boyce
Detective Alice Toussaint Crystal Dickinson
Douda Curtiss Cook
Kimberly “Escape Artist” Hendricks Kimberly Hebert Gregory
  • You’re Now Accountable: Reggie, Douda, Kevin, Jake, Nina, Karen, Detective Cruz, Ronnie
  • Things Can’t Be As They Appear: Brandon, Jerrika, Amir, Tiffany, Emmett, Darnell, Jada
  • The New Cop To The Southside: Detective Toussaint, Detective Cruz, Reggie, Brandon, Miss Ethel, Ronnie, Kimberly, Kevin
Season 2, Episode 1 “Eruptions”How Ronnie end up in the position he’s in is uncovered alongside everyone’s struggle to either grow up, find stability, or just not succumb to the bad side of Chicago.
Director(s) Jet Wilkinson
Writer(s) Ayanna Floyd Davis, Lena Waithe
Air Date 4/7/2019
  • Growing Up In Chicago: Kevin, Papa, Jake, Maisha, Emmett, Tiffany, Jada, Keisha
  • Trying To Find Stability: Brandon, Jerrika, Ronnie
  • Surviving Chicago: Miss Ethel
Season 2, Episode 3 “Past Due”Kevin and Brandon FINALLY reconnect as Ronnie is hoping he can get out thanks to Detective Cruz rushing to close Coogie’s case.
Director(s) Justin Tipping
Writer(s) J. David Shanks
Air Date 4/21/2019
Introduced This Episode
Gladys Renee Lockett
  • Daddy Issues: Ronnie, Tracy, Emmett, Sonny, Tiff
  • What Are Friends For?: Brandon, Hannibal, Kevin, Maisha
  • Technicalities: Kimberly, Detective Cruz, Ronnie, Detective Toussaint, Gladys, Kevin, Miss Ethel

How Would You Rate This?

Negative Mixed Positive

REVIEW OVERVIEW
Brandon and Kevin Chat
89 %
Papa Stepping Up
81 %
R. Kelly Ain’t The Only One
80 %
Toussaint v. Douda
95 %
The Way Emmett Asked Out Keisha
71 %
Detective Cruz
70 %
New Jersey native Amari Allah has been writing reviews, in a "Media Advisor" capacity since 2011 and has been touching upon television, movies, books, live performances, video games, and more ever since. Using a fusion of his varied knowledge of entertainment, partly gained from being a Communications major in college, his love for visual and written media, as well an ever-evolving respect for both creators and the consumers they sell to.