We’ve cheered for her awards. We got her a new job. We raised a fuss when she was snubbed for an Emmy. Now, finally, Issa Rae is back with the thing we’ve all been waiting for, season 2 of Insecure. If you need a refresher on where we left the crew who is showing the world what it means to be Black in L.A., check this out. But for now, let’s talk about Sunday night’s premiere, which was indeed “Hella Great.”
Issa (Issa Rae) is back on the dating scene, and yes, it sucks. The episode opens with a montage of our protagonist on a series of dates from apps like Hinge and Bumble. She’s finding the questions about her work and hometown repetitive and boring — welcome to app dating. It’s also very clear that someone else is on her mind. She imagines herself reconciling with Lawrence (Jay Ellis) — and of course freestyling about why none of the men who have found themselves across the table from her should actually want to date her after she cheated on him — during one uneventful conversation. True to form, Issa is awkward. One date ends when she accidentally knocks a drink into the guy’s lap.
In another part of the city, Lawrence and Tasha (Dominique Perry) are still going strong. When we last saw them, it was during one of the best sex scenes on television — Tasha’s back was perfectly arched and Lawrence took full advantage — and they haven’t skipped a beat in the months since. Another sex scene reintroduces them, and Lawrence makes fun of Tasha’s use of the word “zaddy” during the act. Apparently this is the final romp of their weekend sexathon at Tasha’s house, a regular occurrence for the pair who is “just having fun…” for now. During the week, however, Lawrence’s new residence is an air mattress in Chad’s (Neil Brown Jr.) living room. And it’s not an ideal situation for either of them. Chad is clearly anticipating Lawrence getting his own place, but he applauds Lawrence for keeping things casual with Tasha. And because Lawrence is actually just a dark-skinned Drake with a misguided Nice Guy complex, this makes him feel icky.
Molly and Issa are both facing challenges at work as well. Issa is trying to fight to keep her organization invested in a high school with predominantly Spanish-speaking students and staff. Her classroom visit is a failure, despite their usage of verbiage like “ya’ll” in the official literature. The teachers aren’t much help, either. Not to mention the fact that her colleagues are still white and clueless. But her boss Joanne (Catherine Curtin) decides to give Issa another chance to make things right.
At the law firm where she works, Molly thinks she’s getting a pretty big bonus until she realizes that the name on the check actually belongs to one of her (white male) colleagues. At a company party — where Get Out’s Lil’ Rel guest stars as one of the lawyers! — she realizes that privilege is the real reason Travis (David Hull) got said bonus, because she’s damn sure working harder than him.
Lawrence doesn’t show up to pick up his jury duty summons. He takes Tasha on a date instead and texts Issa that he isn’t going to make it. Per usual, Tasha is being charming and funny in her own little special way. She’s asking questions because she cares, but not putting any pressure on Lawrence. Still, I could hear #PickMe Twitter cracking their knuckles to tweet mean things about her. But I digress…
Molly tells Issa it was stupid to try to flex on Lawrence. What are friends for if they can’t call you out on your shit? Then, things get worse when the party is crashed by her local Blood gang and her trash bin catches fire, staining her wall and ceiling with smoke.
Clearly, Issa is not having a good week. When she returns to the site school for work, some kids steal all of the snacks and run off. She still has to clean up the mess from her party. And of course, Lawrence is still keeping his distance — or so she thinks. While Issa is finally addressing the wreckage from the party in panties and a fitted shirt that don’t look like comfortable loungewear, Lawrence shows up at her door. What happens next is weird and emotional for Issa — and me: They small talk. They make eye contact. They kiss. And then they have rushed couch sex that doesn’t look nearly as good as the sex Lawrence has with Tasha. He washes up, kisses Issa on the cheek, and then he’s “gotta go.”
Something tells me this isn’t going to go the way Issa wants it to.
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