black monday showtime recap episode 7 season 1
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'Black Monday' Plays With Its Conventions And Tackles Race

The heiress to Georgina Jeans has a bachelorette party that could change the course of the show and Keith makes a tough decision that could do the same.

There’s a beautiful sort of symmetry that makes this episode a hallmark of the Black Monday universe. The same way Blair was a mirror for Mo’s life flaws in episode “295,” Tiffany is that for Dawn. Both Mo and Dawn sit adjacent of their respective mirrors at a dinner table in their respective episodes, offering advice that leads them to see the ugly truth of their own lives. Keeping that sort of continuity between two episodes with your two main actors, down to the setting of the dinner table, by leveraging a narrative convention you’ve sewn into the fabric of the show, is impressive storytelling.

Similar to how Mo began seeing the inequities in his life when he derided Blair’s newfound party life, Dawn begins to notice her own relationship’s flaws while dispensing love advice to Tiffany. She even mistakenly refers to Tiffany as “me” before humorously backtracking until she lands on “Tiffa-Me,” a funny and poignant reinforcement of the Dawn mirror.

In the same scene, Dawn also wears this catatonic gaze after Tiffany breaks down how the person you love can change so much one begins to fall out of love. Behind that stare, all of the firewalls and barriers Dawn places around the empathetic part of her brain, in order to work in her emotionally debased profession, broke down and she was deprogramming herself like a machine.

Similarly, Tiffany has an almost identical gaze painted on her face when her socialite friends admit thoughts of her calling off the wedding before she awkwardly repeats “call off the wedding” like a robot malfunctioning. She’s not only a reflection of every main character’s emotional instability but also a reflection of Dawn herself, in this episode.

Tiffany Comes Out

It may have taken seven episodes and 300 days in the Black Monday universe, but it was bound to happen. Tiffany Georgina had a vice-grip on viewers’ attention tighter than the one she gave Blair’s testicles in the series premiere, and for the first time, she is the main focus of an episode.

In this episode, Tiffany’s bachelorette party turns into a therapy session and is the perfect moment for Casey Wilson to showcase a bit of her acting range. She goes from pleading with Dawn to stay at the empty party with her face quivering in desperation to fully oblivious joy in a matter of a few facial contortions. Her cartoonish laughter turns into uncontrollable crying without changing the tone of her voice. Tiffany Georgina is a walking example of how easily the characters in this show can waver between emotional extremes.

Tiffany’s bachelorette party story arc is the finest use of Black Monday narrative conventions in the series, so far, in an episode that uses the 1980s the best.

1980s Tackle Race

‘80s pop culture stories like New York Giants legend Lawrence Taylor’s crack addiction and Nicole Brown’s fatal marriage to O.J. Simpson are fair game for ridicule on Black Monday. This week’s episode also utilizes the ethos of the decade to discuss race in the way only Black Monday can: by eviscerating the pop culture of the time.

The victim this time is 1984 romantic comedy Sixteen Candles. In Sixteen Candles, Jake Ryan offers high school freshman Ted the opportunity to have sex with his drunk girlfriend so Ted can lose his virginity. To Tiffany, Jake has a “heart of gold.” Rightfully so, Dawn responds, “That was in movie theaters and white people were just like…’cool‘?”

The writers drive home the racial divide that Sixteen Candles represents when Mo asks who Ted and Jake are, and Tiffany and Blair reflexively respond Sixteen Candles. Mo’s also the only person who mentions how the film was a “minstrel show” due to the stereotypical Asian character Long Duk Dong.

Black Monday doesn’t appear to make sweeping generalizations about the character of white and Black people. But instead, through the lens of pop culture criticism, it highlights certain questionable behavior, such as staged date rape, which certain cultures accepted as entertainment that others would not. That’s the sort of engrossing breaking of the fourth wall that will add to Black Monday’s first season’s replay value.

The Truth Might Set You Free

Episode “243” had the Black Monday cast racing towards its inevitable collapse. This episode shows the truths that could be their undoing.

So many bombs of truth are dropped at the end of this episode that it’s impossible for anyone involved to leave unscathed by the end of the first season. The plot-shifting truth Mo shares with Blair could crumble the entire Georgina Play. It also seems to have cost Tiffany her freedom. Dawn’s truth could liberate her, but crush her husband. In this episode, the truth doesn’t set anyone free as much as it makes them feel free, if even for a moment. But, it’s Keith’s truth that could potentially destroy the entire operation.

In a perversely touching sequence of events, we discover Keith is more comfortable with having his son implicated in his crimes than he is his boyfriend Miike. So, when Keith meets up with Mike at the end of the episode -- after seemingly being compromised by the SEC -- he tells him “no matter what goes down, I’ll always love you.”

On the surface, that is a sweet gesture but, Black Monday’s penchant for misdirection imbues that scene with an extra layer of mystery. Did Keith say that because he decided to become an informant? Did he say it because he chose money over love and actually implicated Mike?

Add in the fact Keith gives Mike the infamous tie pin worn by the person who will fall to their death at some point in the series, and the Black Monday writers have put the dominoes in place for something dramatic to go down in the last two episodes of the first season.

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Cardi B Lands Leading Role In Comedy ‘Assisted Living’

Cardi B is making her way back to the big screen. The Bronx native officially landed her first leading role in the upcoming Paramount comedy, Assisted Living.

According to Variety, Cardi will play a small time crook struggling to find a hiding place after her latest heist fails. Her character, “Amber,” disguises herself as an elderly woman and hides out at her grandmother's nursing home. The film is described as a “raucous comedy” similar to Mrs. Doubtfire and Sister Act.

Paramount acquired the rights to Assisted Living in 2019. The film’s script was penned by This Is Us writer, Kay Oyegun.

Cardi, 28, made her film debut in the 2019 celeb-heavy stripper flick, Hustlers. The “WAP” rapper appears to have hinted at her Assisted Living role in a recent interview with Billboard where she dished on filming scenes for Fast & Furious 9.

“After ‘Hustlers’ I filmed a little bit for 'Fast & Furious' so I felt like ‘I’m ready for this,’ I knew what to expect,” she explained. “But the characters were a little different so I was like ‘Oh wow, I’m going to need more acting classes.’ I’m planning on doing a movie this year and I’m going to be the lead role so I’m like ‘I need to execute this flawlessly.’”

Besides film, Cardi was a judge on the Netflix completion show, Rhythm & Flow, and landed her own Facebook Watch series, Cardi Tries.

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Netflix Gives Sneak Peek Of Jay-Z Produced Western ‘The Harder They Fall’

Netflix gave a preview of the streaming giant's upcoming films on Tuesday (Jan. 12). Among them, the highly anticipated western, The Harder They Fall.

Produced by Jay Z and written and directed by musician Jeymes Samuel, the film stars Jonathan Majors, Idris Elba, Regina King, Delroy Lindo, Lakeith Stanfield, Zazie Beetz and Woody McClain.

The Harder They Fall follows the fictional character, Nat Love (Majors), as he seeks revenge on the man who murdered his parents. Besides signing on as a producer, Hov also created original music for the film.

The Covid-19 pandemic delayed filming, which began in March of last year in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Filming resumed in September but was paused again after one of the actors tested positive for coronavirus.

“What I love about movies is that they can make you feel every emotion,” King says in the Netflix teaser.

“And show you something you’ve never seen before,” adds Majors while clips from their film plays on the screen.

The Harder They Fall is one of 27 films headed to Netflix. See more in the video below.

2021 = a new movie EVERY WEEK on Netflix. Here's a sneak peek at 27 of the biggest, brightest, fastest, funniest, feel-good, feel-everything films and stars coming to Netflix this year pic.twitter.com/iCr1ZPrc7W

— NetflixFilm (@NetflixFilm) January 12, 2021

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Issa Rae Announces ‘Insecure’ Will End After Season 5

Insecure will return this year for a fifth and final season, Issa Rae revealed on Wednesday (Jan. 13). In a statement to Deadline, Rae and executive producer Prentice Penny showed gratitude to HBO and fans of the show.

“Prentice and I are so grateful that HBO believed in our show from the beginning and kept the faith in us to see our vision through the end,” said Rae.“We always planned to tell this story through five seasons, but we couldn’t have made it this far without the tremendous support of our audience. I feel blessed beyond measure to bring our characters’ stories to an end, on-screen at least.”

HBO’s Programming EVP Amy Gravitt, noted that Rae has “turned insecurity into an iconic form of comedy.”

Based off the 36-year-old’s popular Awkward Black Girl YouTube series, lnsecure was created by Rae and Larry Wilmore. The series premiered on HBO in 2016.

Season five will reportedly begin filming later this month with Rae, Yvonne Orji, Jay Ellis, Natasha Rothwell and Amanda Seales all expected to return. The previous season ended with Rae’s character at yet another crossroads with her on-again-off-again boyfriend, Lawrence (played by Ellis).

Season five of Insecure debuts later this year.

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