Like many of you, I've been faithfully tuning in every Wednesday to see what the genious Ava DuVernay and her team has prepared for us. If you have not yet seen not ONE episode of Queen Sugar, you have two options: WATCH THE SHOW and WATCH THE SHOW!
Queen Sugar gives us what I have yearned to see on television for so long!
Strong, complex, and vulnerable black characters.
A hearty YASSS to Ava DuVernay!
Black people are not monolithic beings!
We are multifaceted in layers that transcend the norm while simultaneously exuding magic from our pores!
Last week's Queen Sugar episode, "Freedom's Plow," had me gasping and shifting nervously in my chair. We were brought through the intricacies and beauty of the Bordelon siblings' romantic lives in a way I personally haven't experienced since the days of Love Jones and The Best Man!
It's easy to see Charley as the sister who left the Louisiana Bayou, married rich, and forgot about her family. We sat with her through the humiliation of her husband's infidelity and the frustrating tango between her and Remy. Charley’s level of fearlessness in a white male dominated industry is every black woman's song to sing. That's why we root for her, we want her to win; help her family keep their late father's farm and find romance again. This past episode, viewers got to see the Charley behind the fight. We saw her delicate treasure; her heart.
Like the rest of you, I grabbed my invisible pearls watching Charlie stand in front of Remy and ask for forgiveness. Wheeww Lordt!
Charley's pride and ego was absent in that scene. And when Remy began to shake his head I thought it was over for her, my mind immediately went to "Men ain’t shit sis, forget him!"
But he too, allowed ego and pride to be absent and embraced that black woman!
Nova + Dr. Robert Dubois
Daughter of Oshun, Ms. Nova! She is my absolute spirit animal! Sister girl is bred in the bayou, painstakingly gorgeous, and intelligent!
I know half of the black community dove head first into their feelings last season watching Nova get cozy with a married white cop. I personally had to turn a blind eye and mind my black business. Get it how you can sis, it's hard out here for a black woman.
But heyyy! Ava had something up her sleeve this season! There's a GAWD SOMEWHERE!!
We were introduced to a brotha! Of course skeptics thought Nova would spend most of the season curving Dr. Robert Dubois. But lissen! You can't deny the plan! My brotha kept pushing, walked around Nova's wall of Jericho 7x and snatched his blessing! Hello!!
It was all too familiar to watch Nova keep her guard up (you men call it frontin). However, it’s important to note that Nova is another subcategory of black women who men often cast away because she's "too complicated, she likes to argue, she's too mean..." must I continue?
A little perseverance will get you somewhere fellas, take note.
Ralph Angel + Darla
Hands down Ralph Angel has been the character who took the longest for me to appreciate. He's the baby brother, made poor decisions, and has baby mama dilemmas; my guy was triggering.
This season we see Ralph Angel step into a level of "man-ness" we're not used to. Remember season one when Aunt Vi said she wouldn't coddle him because the world wouldn’t? Welp! The message clearly marinated. Although Ralph Angel still struggles with staying on the right track, old boy is putting in work. We see you black man!
I also want to shed light to Darla. Like a Phoenix, she is also rising out of the ashes this season. Maintaining employment, being a nurturing mother, staying drug free, and vocalizing her needs.
We see you sis!
Many of us probably predicted another downhill spiral for this young couple. But similar to real life every day love, Ralph Angel and Darla's love is messy and beautiful; frustrating, fearless, and above all forgiving. Ralph Angel is beginning to see the dirt shed from his diamond in the rough- sister girl is shining and he is proud.
Ava gave me every second of 90's black cinema with their heart tugging proposal scene,
"I don't wanna distract you or whatever you think it will take to stay on the right foot. I just wanna ride with you. As long as you'll let me do that, and I promise I'll do my best and help you do your best always..."
What I love the most about last week's episode is seeing black men stand with black women. The black experience is uniquely relative to black people. The only other being on this earth to understand a black woman's plight is a black man. The only other being to understand the black man's trauma is a black woman. Ava DuVernay, Oprah, and the rest of the team, thank you for giving us strong, dynamic, and vulnerable characters. Thank you for not stereotyping nor pigeonholing the black experience. Thank you for showing us the intimacy and strength found in sharing our vulnerabilities with one another as black people. Thank you for giving us a lens of black love not prevalent on today's mainstream tv!