“Queen Sugar” Episode 10: So Far (RECAP)

With all the craziness of Election Day, diving back into Queen Sugar was the perfect escape. On the latest episode, the Bordelon siblings learn just how much owning a farm has cost their family.

The night starts of with Micah and his new boo, KiKi. I can’t tell you how much I love them together, especially because KiKi can hold her own and Micah is falling over himself trying to keep up.

Micah goes to see KiKi at her dance team rehearsal, and the boy is hypnotized. Afterwards, they walk and talk but my favorite part is when KiKi wouldn’t walk through a door until Micah opened it. (sounds diva-ish but you’ve got to show a boy how to treat you).

And KiKi is there for Micah in a big way after a dilemma in his private school admissions surfaces. Micah’s private school in California had expelled him for the inappropriate picture on his ex-girlfriend Stella’s phone, which really wasn’t his, on top of all the drama that Davis’ scandal caused. Now the private school in St. Joe wants to distance themselves from the possible distractions he could bring.

So now that leaves public school, and of course Charley isn’t having it, but Micah is starting to warm up to the idea. KiKi could have a lot to do with that…

Even Aunt Vi thinks that the public schools in St. Joe have a lot to offer, but Charley makes it clear she doesn’t want to risk Micah ending up like Aunt Vi, Nova, Ralph Angel or any of the other common folk.

damn

When Aunt Vi gives her the side eye, she immediately feels bad but once again her bougie-ness has gotten out of hand.

As Micah is explaining all of this to KiKi, she tells him that he can make his own decision and doesn’t have to live in the shadow of his father’s mistakes. And then Micah makes another decision, and kisses KiKi. Awww, young love.

love

On the other hand, there’s trouble in paradise for Nova and Chantel when the two activists start to bump heads over what’s best for the movement.

Nova has been invited to hold a symposium with Melissa Harris Perry and Chantel starts planning what her questions should be. For Nova, this is a little overbearing and she starts to pulls away. But when Chantel finds a picture of Calvin in Nova’s drawer, she makes the final decision to break up.

From where she stands, you can’t lead a revolution and sleep with the “enemy” at the same time.

Aunt Vi is still giving Hollywood the cold shoulder and trying to control Ralph Angel’s life. Things start to change when she becomes manager at the High Yellow, the same restaurant she quit working at a few weeks ago.

Aunt Vi walks in and saves the day as the health inspector comes for a visit. She demands a management position with benefits and makes a big step in defining a life for herself outside of taking care of her family.

Charley is the first person Aunt Vi shares the good news with, and she thanks her what she said earlier. Her comments reminded Aunt Vi that she still has goals to achieve.

She even decides to sign guardianship of Blue back over to Ralph Angel.

Blue’s class is taking a trip to the zoo, which means permission slips need to get signed, and since Ralph Angel doesn’t have guardianship, he has to ask Aunt Vi to sign so Blue can go.

But then Ralph Angel breaks down as he tells Aunt Vi how not having guardianship of Blue reminds him every day that he was in prison. He’s done his time and just wants to move on. Once again, Queen Sugar offers a small glimpse into what it’s like for people who have gone through the prison system.

Aunt Vi can’t argue with that, but let’s Ralph Angel know that she will always be there for him.

yes

Meanwhile, the Bordelon farm business is getting back to normal, or at least it’s supposed to be. The rest of the laborers haven’t shown up for work since the deaths of Alejandro and Miguel. Prosper, the farm manager, is calling in favors to help work the land. But without a mill to process the crop, there’s no point.

So Charley attempts to find a mill and in the process, uncovers a deep history between the Bordelons and the Landrys.

She meets with a mill that offers a 40/60 split, 40% going to the mill. A heavy price to pay for struggling minority farmers.

So when she is offered $4 million cash for the farm, Charley realizes there has to be more to the story.

Apparently, the Landrys own the majority of the farm land in St. Joe and hold a percentage of ownership in all the mills. On a map, the Bordelon land is the only area not controlled by the Landrys.

Charley calls a family meeting, which includes Prosper. Aunt Vi is the one to explain the dark history that connects the Bordelons and the Landrys.

The Landrys had owned the Bordelons as slaves, but as sharecroppers during the Great Depression, the Bordelons were able to buy land from the Landrys while they were struggling.

After the Landrys recovered financially, they wanted the land back, but generations of  Bordelons have given their lives to keep it in the family, including Ernest.

Aunt Vi describes how at every turn, the Landrys made it hard for their father Earnest to be successful, and how it basically stressed him to death.

crying

After hearing this, Nova, Charley and Ralph Angel understand that they can’t sell the land because it has already been paid for. They have to stay and make it work.

Like many people, the election has been a roller coaster of emotions for us. We’re shocked, fearful and disappointed. But after watching Queen Sugar, we can be reminded of the strength this country was built on, and know that it’s now our job to carry that forward. Our ancestors would expect nothing less.