The Chi Recap – Season 3, Episode 1: “Foe ‘Nem”

Hey y’all, heyyyy!! Now that Insecure has ended, I’ll be recapping some other shows. I did a quick poll of my FB friends asking them to suggest shows that might be good to recap and The Chi came up again and again. On top of that, I wanted to pick up the show because I am a faithful watcher of the Real Housewives of Atlanta (judge ya mammy!) and I know that Kandi will be a recurring character this season. So… here we are. Now, I watched the first season of The Chi, but I didn’t catch season 2. When I did watch, I really liked Jason Mitchell at the center of the storyline as Brandon, the main character. So when I heard about the foolishness he’d been involved in that led to his firing from the show, I really didn’t see how The Chi would survive without his character. And, um… yeah. The writers clearly didn’t  know how to handle Jason’s absence either. I’ll get to that later. 

The episode starts off with a wedding. It was a beautiful waterfront wedding on what I assume is Lake Michigan… Kevin and Keisha’s mom is marrying a woman named Dre (whose wedding tux was FLAMES, btw. Unfortunately, I wasn’t as impressed with Kevin’s mom’s dress… but I digress.). Emmett’s parents show up – his mom is looking lovely in a royal blue floral number with matching eye shadow and her locs in a fierce top-knot. Apparently, though Emmett’s parents are hooking up again, they are NOT together, and they kept me rolling throughout the wedding scenes with their banter. As they were trotting through the park to get to the wedding site, Emmett’s mom was teasing his dad about them being late because he just HAD to give himself a haircut before they left. His dad replies, “I can’t go to a wedding without a fresh cut. Who I look like, Steph Curry?” And if you’re an NBA fan and are familiar with Steph’s raggedy shape-up, this scene made you laugh… very, very hard. LOL!

Keisha is late to the wedding, but she looks ab-fab in her bridesmaid’s dress! Her lateness is clearly indicative of her disdain for her mother’s choice in life partner. Dre, on the other hand, couldn’t be happier to be joining their little family. A very sweet scene is when she takes time during the ceremony to give Kevin and Keisha a gift and to let them know how much she loves and cares for them. Kevin is excited about his gold chain; Keisha is unimpressed. Later, Kevin and Keisha have a chance to chop it up about their feelings about the wedding and Keisha doesn’t go into details about WHY she doesn’t like Dre, but she is clearly not comfortable with her mother’s marriage. 

A few minutes after the ceremony is over, Kevin tells Keisha he’s gotta dip out and head somewhere else. Keisha tells him to text her when he gets to wherever he’s going. And he leaves his mother’s wedding… that is still going on. This confused me. Kevin has grown up quite a bit since I last saw him in season 1, but he’s not THAT damn grown. And what could be so important that he needed to leave his own mother’s wedding? Well… a funeral, that’s what. So, remember Brandon? Well… it turns out he’s dead. And Kevin was going to HIS funeral. I’m not sure what kind of mother is okay with letting her kid ride a bus across town to a funeral while she turns up at her wedding reception, but… yeah. That’s what’s going on here. 

What happened to Brandon? Well… we don’t know. Kevin arrives at the funeral to see a closed casket and a HUGE (rather nice) portrait of Brandon at the front of the church. Brandon’s mother (Sonja Sohn from The Wire) is at the podium giving an entirely too long speech about why Brandon was destined to end up in a casket because of her shortcomings as a mother and a person. I’m watching her give her all to this monologue and wondering how in the world she could make this boy’s funeral about HER!  *eye roll* Sis, have some seats. Your son is dead… could you say a few words about HIM? Brandon’s mom also mentioned Jerrika, Brandon’s girlfriend, in her speech. Turns out, Jerrika is gone, too. Two main characters whose storylines are done, without any explanation about how or why. It seems like there’s a big chunk of story missing and I wonder if the writers will fill it in later. 

After the funeral is over, Emmett tries to pay his respects to Brandon’s mom. She tells him Chicago don’t love him and if he knows what’s good for him he will get the hell out of Dodge (I love that saying — my dad used to say it all the time, lol). I’m sure there’s some foreshadowing there that will come back to bite us later. At any rate, she was rude and nasty to Emmett while warning him that Chicago would eat him up and spit him out… she has the kind of attitude that I hate to see! I really wish she wasn’t playing such a stereotypical role, but there are mothers just like her in every city and town all over the world. Bitter and jaded and taking their hurt and anger out on the young people around them.

Back at the wedding, we find out that Emmett is trying to carry on with Brandon’s food service business by catering Kevin’s mama’s wedding. But it turns out Emmett doesn’t have Brandon’s skills in the kitchen after all. The food is so bad that the couple has to end up ordering pizza to feed the guests. They still managed to have a great time at the reception, complete with the Cupid Shuffle… I just love how the joy of line dancing brings folks together. Kevin and his friends join in the line dancing fun, but not before they sneak off to the kitchen to drink wine together. It’s at this time that they plan to lure girls over to Kevin’s place while his two moms are on their honeymoon. During the reception, Keisha and Emmett get a chance to have a heart-to-heart by the water. Keisha reveals to Emmett that she doesn’t want to take advantage of her track scholarships because she is afraid to leave Chicago and she’s not really feeling track anymore. Emmett warns her to use track to get up out The Chi. I hope she heeds his warning.

Kevin and Keisha’s mom heads off to her honeymoon, leaving the kids at home alone, and both children have plans of their own for the time she’ll be away. The honeymoon included a love scene that had a big… reveal of sorts lol. I wasn’t readyyyy! You’ll know it when you see it! 

Meanwhile, at home, Kevin and his friends invite some girls over and when they get there, they have Maisha in tow! I love Maisha’s character and I really like that even though she’s not a petite girl, they made her the object of affection for both Kevin AND Papa and Kevin tried to give a little speech about treating Maisha right because she’s “special”. This leads him and Papa into having a conversation about “soul ties”. I loved that part! I think it might go over most youngins’ heads, but that was a dope topic for these boys to explore at that moment.

Emmett is living with his girlfriend Tiffany who is some kind of weed kingpin or something… and she’s jealous of the relationship he has with Keisha. I can kind of see why. There’s definitely something between them. Later in the episode when Keisha came by their apartment to drop off the balance of the catering payment for the wedding. Emmett follows her out the door and asks her about college. She tells him she thinks she’s decided on Pepperdine. While they’re talking, energy passes between them and Emmett confesses that Keisha will always have a place in his heart. I felt that the writers were foreshadowing something really bad happening to one of these two characters… and I was right! But we’ll get to that shortly.

Luke James has joined the cast of the show this season, playing the older brother of a character who was killed in season 2 (don’t ask me which character because I didn’t want season 2, remember?!) and also the brother of one of Kevin’s friends who’s been sold by their drug addict mom (who sells kids?!). Luke joins the cast with a bang – literally shooting people. His character is definitely the opposite of his R&B vibes… I mean the man played Johnny Gill in the New Edition miniseries, for God’s sake, lol. But he doesn’t do a bad job in this episode! In the scene where he’s asking his mother about his brother who’s been sold off, he is still really tender toward him, proving that everybody loves their mama… even when she ain’t shit.

So remember when I said I was right about the foreshadowing when it comes to Emmett and Keisha’s fates? Well… Keisha is missing y’all and I hate to see it! She was sitting at a bus stop on a deserted street waiting for a ride, Mr. Ronnie, the old guy who shot Coogie walks by and they share a very tense moment. In the next scene, the bus rounds the corner and Keisha is gone… and her cell phone is on the ground. So, she’s missing with no phone?! Oh lawd! The outcome looks bleak! Maybe this will be the time that Ronnie can redeem himself. Maybe he saw something! Idk. I feel awful that she’s gone. I see that the writers are trying to touch on the epidemic of missing Black girls, and I hope they do this storyline some justice. Will they find Keisha? Who will advocate for her? I also find it weird that they keep putting Keisha in these very messed up situations. The first season they had her running around promiscuous. From the season 2 recap they played before the episode, I saw they had her dating her track coach… more inappropriate behavior. And now she’s missing! Her character can’t catch a break. Ugh. I guess only time will tell how this plays out. I’m looking forward to seeing what the rest of the season may bring! Stay tuned!

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