Category Archives: Reviews

OWN’s “Queen Sugar” Changes the Game with Two-Night Premiere (RECAP & REVIEW)

All hail Queens Ava Duvernay and Oprah Winfrey!

Over the past few years, Duvernay has been dismantling barriers in Hollywood with her intense storytelling. From Middle of Nowhere to academy nominated film Selma, her projects have brought diverse stories to the forefront.

 Queen Sugar, a collaboration with Oprah Winfrey on the Oprah Winfrey Network is no exception. The two-night premiere drops viewers right in the center of a storm brewing within a Louisiana-based family. Ending the life of its patriarch Ernest Bordelon, the storm touches down and his three adult children are left to pick up the pieces. Now Charley, Nova and Ralph Angel  have to balance their individual drama, while trying to save their father’s farm. 

Oprah and Ava.jpg
Courtesy: (Photo by Mark Davis/WireImage)

 My roommate and I watched captivated as we gasped, laughed and attempted not to cry at the immensely emotional portrayal of everyday life. We forgot that we were watching television, instead of a this real life unfolding. 

Queen Sugar‘s Tuesday night premiere opened with Nova sharing a bed with some mystery man, and I must say, getting dressed in the morning never looked so sexy. Then there was Ralph Angel and his son Blue, who is the sweetest little boy EVER (which makes the fact that his father robs a bank 10 seconds later that more tragic). Finally, there was Charley, the Los Angeles-bound baller’s wife, her NBA star husband David West and their teenage son Micah.

Back in Louisiana, Nova is equal parts spiritual priestess and journalist, with a passion for social causes such as Black Lives Matter. In a span of a scene,  she prescribes an “herbal” remedy and completes an article on police brutality.

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Ralph Angel is the baby of the three and the most troubled. Fresh out of prison, unemployed and raising Blue without his mother, Darla, a recovering drug addict. He lives with his Aunt Violet and her boyfriend Hollywood, a couple full of southern charm.

Charley seems to have the perfect life, complete with a FINE husband and smart son, but when a sex scandal involving the team explodes, so does her life.

In arguably the best scene of the night, Charley and Micah are watching Davis dominate on the court when every phone in the arena begins to light up with notifications. A video has been released TMZ-style and Davis, who denied the sex scandal, has been caught in a lie.

Charley, seeing her life crashing before her eyes, walks on the COURT and confronts Davis in the middle of the game. All while my roommate and I are screaming No, No, NO!

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Definitely the OMG moment of the night.

But the most emotional moments come after Ernest has at stroke at Blue’s birthday party. The family gathers around an immobilized Ernest that can’t talk and has to use vocabulary cards to communicate. Everyone is by his side except Charley, who shows up seconds after  he passes away.

In the second biggest OMG moment of the night, Nova sits parked outside of a house and we see mister sexy from the beginning of the episode with his WIFE and KIDS!

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The spiritual priestess, journalist and social activist has been sleeping with a married, white police detective.

After all that, part two of the premiere on Wednesday focused more on Ernest’s home-going services.

Charley, Nova and Ralph Angel come together to bury their father at a traditional Louisiana service, which included soul food at the repast and Nova sewing a pouch containing a priestess blessing in the lining of the coffin.

While Wednesday night focused more on grieving, it also set up the rest of the season when potential buyers came by the farm unannounced.

If the two-night premiere is any indication, Queen Sugar is about to explode and Hollywood needs to take notes.

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HTGAWM Winter Finale Recap: What Did We Do?

by MIYA TREADWELL

Breathe…just breathe…is what I kept telling myself during the winter finale of How to Get Away with Murder.

That didn’t work at ALL but at least we know who shot Annalise.

Source: Google Images
Source: Google Images

So Wes completely lost his mind and shot Annalise, only after she pushed him over the edge, telling him him the truth about Rebecca. All at once the events from this season came to a head and Annalise ran out of tricks trying to fix the twisted situation.

But lets start from the beginning. Michaela calls Connor over to the Hapstall mansion to help her decide what to do with the gun. Connor doesn’t want any parts of it and Michaela’s only intention is to protect Caleb. They’re still trying to figure out what to do when Catherine walks in and then apparently makes a run for it.

Annalise finds out about Catherine and makes Caleb choose between Catherine and himself. Annalise can’t defend them both and now that they have the murder weapon, Caleb can’t keep trying to protect his sister.

Continue reading HTGAWM Winter Finale Recap: What Did We Do?

Scandal Review: Rasputin

by BREANA BACON

Y’all, listen. I may not have class on Fridays anymore, but I’m tired of waking up disheveled because of the stress Shonda has caused me on Thursday nights. Therefore, I am starting a petition and setting up headquarters for my #StopShondaStress2015 campaign. I need signatures and volunteers so now is not the time to let your stress overcome you, it is time to take action. It should be a crime to snatch so many edges without permission as Shonda has over the past several years.

Anyway, without further adieu, let us debrief.

Continue reading Scandal Review: Rasputin

HTGAWM Recap: I Want You to Die

by MIYA TREADWELL

I.CAN’T.TAKE.THIS. The latest episode of How to Get Away With Murder was filled with one BIG shocker and I’m still trying to let it register. The finish line is in sight and I can’t wait to see how it all ends.

Source: Google Images
Source: Google Images

Episode 7 I Want You to Die started out slow but built in suspense, reaching an ultimate showdown between Annalise and Bonnie. Bonnie is no longer Annalise’s puppy dog.

But let’s start from the beginning. Annalise and the squad have found the missing baby in the Hapstall case. A loner, computer gamer named Phillip but what they don’t know is Phillip has been watching them this whole time.

To complicate things further, Oliver decides he wants to join team Keating, against Connor’s intense objections. In his attempt to make a good impression, Oliver sets up a date with Phillip. Annalise pulls the plug but its too late and Phillip ends up cornering Oliver in his apartment. At this point, I’m screaming like a maniac because Oliver is the only decent person on this show and I’m going to be really upset if something happens to him.

Source: Google Images
Source: Google Images

Speaking of which, Eve was also suiting up for team Keating. It seems like Prosecutor Sinclair will NOT let go of her vendetta against Annalise and again goes after Nate. This time she attempting to prove he killed his wife, Nina. Annalise tries to tell Prosecutor Sinclair that she ain’t bout this life but of course she tries to play hard. Eve, who might, might be as slick as Annalise in the courtroom, gets the charges dismissed against Nate for the second time. Annalise 2, Prosecutor Sinclair 1.

She gets one point for spilling the beans about what happen at Asher’s lake house, causing a huge rift between him and Bonnie. In her eyes, Asher is a bystander who should have stood up for Tiffany after she was assault at his house party. As Asher tries to get back in her good graces, he inadvertently let’s slip his knowledge of her painful past and Bonnie sets her sights on Annalise.

But before the blow up between those two, Annalise shares a moment with Eve and delivers the WTF moment of the night. Up until this point we thought Wes’s mother had committed suicide but when Annalise says to Eve “It’s him”, we can only assume that Wes is her son. I’ll pause here to give you a moment…

Source: Google Images
Source: Google Images

It all makes sense now. The awkward chemistry they have, why she’s so invested in him, why she wants to protect him.

And before I can absorb that, Bonnie confronts Annalise and is the second person to tell her she is incapable of love. She feels betrayed by her and even though SHE MURDERED REBECCA thinks what Annalise did to clean up her mess is unforgivable.

I don’t know what these people want from Annalise but if I were her I would be on my way to Paris right now.

Source: Google Images
Source: Google Images

‘Late Knight Special’ Album Review

by SAMUEL ANTEZANA

New York City’s Pro Era, led by front man Joey Bada$$, has directed their recent spotlight to the release of Kirk Knight’s debut project Late Knight Special.

Kirk Knight, has been one of the group’s main producers throughout their development and has stood out among the various group members as a talented emcee, breaking the hip-hop stereotype that producers can’t rap.

I have been following multiple members off the Pro Era roster through their social media accounts, with a focus on their Instagram accounts and I have noticed a recurring trend within their postings. Whenever one of the members is working on their latest project, all of the members take to their social media and promote their peers’ material, such was the case during Kirk Knight’s process of working on his debut album. For a genre of music such as hip-hop, where competition is fierce and proving yourself through your craft is essential, these young emcees have harvested a strong sense of comradery, which is a wonderful thing to see in a genre of music with a history of harsh critiques and violent competition.

Continue reading ‘Late Knight Special’ Album Review

Scandal Review: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

by BREANA BACON

Look people, I’m fed up. Not with Shonda this week, but with Olivia.

I refuse to begin this debriefing with any pleasantries because I am stressed and irritated beyond relief.

Courtesy: pinterest.com
Courtesy: pinterest.com

Y’all are too, don’t act like you aren’t. We can bypass all the foolishness.

Continue reading Scandal Review: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

Scandal Review: You Got Served

by BREANA BACON

Look y’all, I’m feeling like Tamela Mann tonight. I’m tired and after this week’s episode I need nothing than to be taken to the throne of grace. Jesus take the wheel and steer it to the king.

Olivia Pope needs to be fixed? That just isn’t right. My letter to Shonda is coming as soon as my Dr. Miracle edge repair arrives, I promise.

Anyway, let us begin before the stress comes creeping back.

Continue reading Scandal Review: You Got Served

Scandal Review: Dog-Whistle Politics

by BREANA BACON

Hello my Gladiator friends,

Welcome to another edition of my De-stress Session! I’m sure you all, like me, have to replace your mugs this week because you’ve realized that the tea Shonda Rhimes spilled this episode was more than your minuscule cup and saucer could handle.

I was simply outdone by the amount of uncomfortable truths that the light was shed on this week, but I’ll be the first to say, we needed that truth to be brought forward. Some people in this world need it more than others but that’s just not any of my business.

Courtesy: www.obsev.com
Courtesy: http://www.obsev.com

Let’s get started, shall we?

Continue reading Scandal Review: Dog-Whistle Politics

Scandal Review: Paris is Burning

by BREANA BACON

Before I begin, I must admit that I was so close to having an incomplete review tonight but my very good and loyal friend, Sierra who is in Tampa, saved my life and assisted in the snatching of my edges tonight. Thank you, Lord, for good friends who would rather you be snatched by Shonda than live life wondering what it would be like if you had been.

Ladies and gentlemen, if there was ever a time we as Gladiators needed to rally around one another, it is now.

We have just experienced the biggest run around the fictional political world has ever seen. Never in my life have I been more stressed about a relationship that has absolutely nothing to do with me than I am about Olivia Pope and Fitzgerald Grant.

I am fed up. I know y’all are too. I’m gonna try and get through this as best as I can but I’ve had enough.

Courtesy: giphy.com
Courtesy: giphy.com

Now let’s get into the foolishness.

Continue reading Scandal Review: Paris is Burning