The Chi: Nice Guys Finish Last
In our sixth episode of Season Two we find ourselves watching as Brandon begins to sink, Emmett tries his hardest to be an adult and painful memories from Ronnie’s past bring up feelings he doesn’t want to deal with. Over halfway through this season and The Chi doesn’t seem to have an intention of slowing down, keeping it at the top as one of the best dramas on tv right now.
To start, Brandon absolutely cannot catch a break. Even when it seems like everything is going good for him, something happens and he finds himself right back with his head barely above water. This time, as he advances the rounds in the cooking competition he comes to learn that his old boss Dan is also competing and knows someone on the judge’s panel. He’s going to advance no matter what Brandon does and no matter how good his food is. Frustrated, Brandon turns to Mr. Otis Perry and makes a deal with him. Unaware that he probably just made a deal with the devil. On the other side, Brandon and Jerikka continue to clash when after a night with her friends it is revealed that Jerikka says she’s only with Brandon for the sex. Or at least that what her friends say. It’s another reason for Brandon to leave Jerikka, the tension between them has been building for a while. Instead, though, he goes for some air and decides he only has time to focus on the cooking competition, his love life can wait.
Meanwhile, Emmett’s love life is coming back to haunt him in three different but similar ways. His baby mamas have all joined forces and are now plotting against him. Or at least that’s how it seems to him. In reality, the mothers of his children have decided its time for Emmett to grow up. He cannot give special treatment and money to EJ and EJ only. He has three kids, they should all be getting something. But Emmett is technically unemployed and his money from the Taco Truck can only go so far. The four of them have to come to some kind of agreement, even if it means Emmett being broker than broke.
Speaking of being broke, Ronnie is still very broke. But in a much more internal way. Since Grandma Ethel’s tv was destroyed during the break-in, Jada and Ronnie want to replace it before she comes home. A realtor who is fixing up a house across the street mentioned to Jada that he needed someone to come in and clean up, it’s easy money and doesn’t require Ronnie socialize with anyone. So he agrees to do it. Only to come across a box of photos while cleaning that reveal to him a memory from his past he had buried deep down. And the revaluation causes Ronnie’s insecurity and anger to get the best of him.
It always seems like three steps forward and two steps back for our four main Black Men.
Even Kevin, who gets into an argument with Jake, has to deal with certain situations he’d rather not be a part of. Like his sister having him open her window for her to sneak in late at night and his teacher overwhelming him with the offer of a better school. The only peace Kevin gets comes in the form of Miasha. Since Kevin has been bringing her homework to her when she’s forced to stay home and watch her siblings, Miasha was able to keep her grades up and in return, her mother throws her a fairly lavish party for her birthday. To which Kevin is invited to of course. He’s the only boy and doesn’t want to stay long but he did bring her a gift, along with a sweet kiss that just may have sealed the deal for their budding relationship.
On a slightly smaller scale, we learned that Keisha has a new beau. One that is much older than her, even older than Emmett. Turns out there’s a reason Keisha was able to get back on the track team, she’s having a relationship with the coach and for now couldn’t be more pleased with herself. It’s a slippery slope that has nowhere but down to go, the only hope is that Keisha doesn’t come out of it irreparably damaged.
Last nights episode was heavy on expressing that sometimes no matter how hard Black Men try, they can’t get ahead unless there’s someone to help them out. Any and all systems are rigged against Black Men, the darker their skin is the harder it is for them to win. It’s a Catch 22 that never lets up and never gives any breaks. Making it in the world is more about who you know than how good of a person you are, which sucks to say but is proven more and more every day.
As we inch closer and closer to the season finale, it pleases me that there still seems to be a small push for Ronnie and Jada. I’m a big fan of Ronnie and hope that he can find peace, along with redemption. I don’t want Jada to be the person to give it to him, I don’t want her turned into a plot point for him but I would like to see if there can be a romance between them. Something a little extra for the show that could give Ronnie a new outlook on life and give Jada the attention she deserves.
I still find myself struggling to like Jerrika and often wonder why Brandon hasn’t just ended things with her. At the beginning of the season, we witnessed her parents talk down on him and encourage Jerrika to find someone else. Then last night we watched awkwardly as her friends, one in particular, spilled the beans on how exactly Jerrika thinks of Brandon. And the things she allows her friends to say about him. Not to mention she’s begun dealing under the table just to impress a woman who wouldn’t give her a second glance if it weren’t for her parents. But doesn’t want Brandon dealing with Mr. Perry who is just as shady as the man she’s dealing with. Jerrika’s hypocritical of Brandon and even though he continues to overlook it and forgive her, I can’t help but wonder if a real break up is in their near future.
As always, I enjoy settling in Sunday evenings and being swept away to the south side of Chicago. It’s easily my favorite part of my weeks now.