1.21.2014

Black Girls' Night Out: Mary Jane Paul

Last week on Being Mary Jane, everyone fell a little further down the rabbit hole as we continue to follow the exploits of Mary Jane Paul and the people in her life.  Friendships are tested, familial relationships are explored, and a stripper overstays his welcome. 

“The woman who catches a man’s eye earns a purse, the woman that captures his heart earns his world.” 
~  Chris Brew

The episode starts out with our heroine meeting Andre at a hotel they used to frequent while they were dating.  I can't help but wonder why Mary Jane didn't suspect that something was amiss long before she discovered he was married.  It just seems a bit strange for a couple to frequent a hotel so often that it's become your "special place" instead of spending time at each other's houses.  I'm just saying.
 
Andre surprises both MJ (and the viewers) when he asks her to marry him.  Sigh.  Has the man forgotten that he's already currently married or is he just that oblivious?  I vote for oblivious. 
 
Her face likely reflects the look on mine as she stares at him like he's grown a second head.  He tells her that he was going to tell her everything, shoves a ring box at her and then proceeds to drone on about...whatever it is he's droning on about.  Mary Jane stares at him mutely while seeming to hear him from one end of a long tunnel as tears slowly slide down her cheeks.  She tells him that all he does is make her cry before turning and leaving without another word.  PSA:  If all a man does is make you cry, he's not the right man for you.

We next see her at home doing mundane tasks around the house—exercising, brushing her teeth, reading the paper, eating yogurt.  Strangely, I really like this scene.  Although she spends the entire scene in motion, it's all so calm and tranquil.  Perhaps it's because it's a small moment of normalcy in a life that's anything but.

Mary Jane pops over to her parent's house to take her niece to the doctor, but is quickly irritated to learn that Niecy has rescheduled the appointment without telling her so that the baby's father can take her.  Which makes it even more sad later in the episode when Niecy is sitting in abject denial as she waits for him to show up.  He never does.

Apparently, MJ's irritation made her want to work because the next we see of her, she's at the station randomly speaking Spanish to the mail guy while being all up in his business.  The mail guy hands her a package and--surprise, surprise--Andre has sent her the engagement ring (an expensive one, I'm sure) via office mail.  Why he sent it to her office and not her home is a mystery that will probably never be answered, but I can't help but wonder anyway.  She sticks it in a drawer, but it's a sure bet that we haven't seen the last of it.  Unfortunately.

She also goes toe to toe with Kara for taking the position to work on Mark's show behind her back.  The show touches on the "angry black woman" stereotype  that most black women have to deal with far too often, and I'm glad they didn't pull any punches.

Later, Mary Jane and her dad meet for a father/daughter "date" and we finally get to see our girl relax a bit.  And I do mean a bit, because the minute her father starts talking about not being able to wait until the day that a man asks him for her hand in marriage, you could see the tension reassert itself in an instant.  MJ can see how giddy the thought makes him, and it's telling how uncomfortable she looks when he tells her that she deserves the best.  Too bad she doesn't think so. 

It's also hilarious to see her get all protective of her father when an old family friend sidles up to the table and, under the guise of being concerned about her sick mother, proceeds to eye her father with no shame whatsoever.  Mary Jane isn't pleased.  Or having any of it.  Dad of course, is either completely oblivious or pretending to be.

Old family friend Katherine shows up at the house the very next day (damn she moves fast), and neither MJ or Mama Patterson is fooled.  There is a really touching moment between mother and daughter that belies the "mommie dearest" designation that MJ has given her (at least as far as her phone is concerned).  I hope we get to see more of those moments as the season goes on.

Nighttime has fallen, and we cut to Mary Jane's house where she is hosting a girl's night.  Kara shows up with bottle of wine and an apology and, after making her work for it, MJ finally accepts.  They hug it out, a stripper shows up (and never leaves) and we get a funny scene of some slightly drunken dancing before they retire to the kitchen to spill information that was better left unspilled.

Spermgate finally rears its ugly head again when MJ beats everyone's confessions by many, many miles.  She pulls her secret stash out of her freezer, plops it on her counter like it's a Hot Pocket, then stands back while everyone else eyes it in shock.  Oddly, everyone seems to think it's funny except for Dr. Lisa.  She's appalled and disappointed, both in the reactions of her friends and the fact that Mary Jane didn't reach out to her before things got so bad she felt she had to resort to such a desperate act.  Pot meet kettle.

During all the Mary Jane drama that went down in this episode, Andre and Avery had plenty of their own.  Avery tries to get Andre to sign a post-nuptial agreement, a document that would give her both houses, controlling interest of his marketing firm, and full custody of the kids if he so much as smiles at another woman for the remainder of their marriage.  He's having none of it and walks away without signing, which only proves to Avery that he does love Mary Jane.  She’s better than me though, because I’m not convinced Andre loves anyone but himself.

Later in the episode, Andre finds Avery crying in their bedroom's walk-in closet.  They begin to argue and the ongoing, cleverly edited scene is overlaid with Andre receiving text after text (after desperate text) from Mary Jane who's now ready to talk.  The show does a nice job of faking us out when Andre finally--and not-so-subtly--checks the messages on his phone.  Of course, we all think he's going to rush over to Mary Jane's place, so color me surprised when he's making love to his wife and not MJ in the very next scene. 

The episode ends poignantly as Mary Jane wakes up alone the next morning, reaches for her phone and discovers that the man who supposedly loves her hasn't bothered to answer any of her texts. 
 
Personally, I'm hoping that he never does, but I'm sure that's too much to ask for.  Mara Brock Akil does not seem to be trying to make Andre a sympathetic character, so I'll admit that I'm curious to see where this is going.

12 comments:

  1. I'm so glad you're taking this one for the team. I don't think I could sit through this.

    It just seems a bit strange for a couple to frequent a hotel so often that it's become your "special place" instead of spending time at each other's houses. I'm just saying.

    And this

    The mail guy hands her a package and--surprise, surprise--Andre has sent her the engagement ring (an expensive one, I'm sure) via office mail. Why he sent it to her office and not her home is a mystery that will probably never be answered, but I can't help but wonder anyway.

    And this

    Avery tries to get Andre to sign a post-nuptial agreement, a document that would give her both houses, controlling interest of his marketing firm, and full custody of the kids if he so much as smiles at another woman for the remainder of their marriage. He's having none of it and walks away without signing

    All gave me a migraine.

    Kill this man. Cut the brakes in his car. Feed him ground glass for an extended period. Crush 60 aspirins and dump them in his favorite bottle of vodka.

    Do whatever is necessary to take him out of this world. Why Mara Brock Akil felt we needed a show with this type of character is well beyond me.

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    1. I'm just hoping that she has a higher purpose with this character. Unlike Fitz, Akil doesn't seem to be trying to get us to like Andre and isn't trying to make his relationship with MJ into some epic love story that we're supposed to root for. I don't think she wants us to root for either him or their relationship. I do think that's the point (or at least I hope it is).

      Having watched three episodes now, I don't think the show needs him or the MJ/Andre storyline in order to flourish. In fact, I think I'd enjoy the show more if we got to see MJ dating, trying to find Mr. Right and having all the trials and tribulations that go along with that. I'm hoping that Andre is phased out sooner rather than later so that MJ can shine on her own w/o this particular storyline dragging her down.

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    2. I'm just hoping that she has a higher purpose with this character. Unlike Fitz, Akil doesn't seem to be trying to get us to like Andre and isn't trying to make his relationship with MJ into some epic love story that we're supposed to root for.

      This gives me hope.

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  2. I feel like Mary Jane really is Gabrielle Union's alternate life. So she was on some late night show talking about how she motivated herself to keep it tight. She said go to gyms with lots of porn actresses and that would make her stay on the machines much longer, and then she finished off by saying "that's how she got the ring."
    I think it is so sad that she thinks getting a ring from a man who just had a baby with another woman is something to gloat about, and to knock yourself out in the gym for (exercise is great, I just wouldn't be doing it to hang on to a trifling ass man).
    I just can't watch this show b/c her own life isn't too much better, no matter how many fancy nights out she gets.

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    1. Amen. Amen. Amen, Amen, Amen.

      I am sick to death of hearing women like this gloat about getting a ring by doing something superficial.

      This is a clear cut case of a woman in denial. She got a ring from a man who ain't worth shit. That million-dollar ring (seriously, Black people???) is a million dollars worth of shit, and now she's acting like it's the rest of the world that's making fucked up decisions. Let's keep it real, she married for money, for publicity, and for all the other wrong reasons we can list. Now she's working herself to get rail thin (not unlike Kerry Washington) for some man who, like other such men, will just end up banging his baby mama's (most likely chubby) nanny or some big-bottom stripper or a low-rent prostitute.

      Ironically, in Season One of Scandal, when the Prez insists Amanda Tanner's baby isn't his, Cyrus tells him to keep saying that, 'cause he'll be saying that a lot. I foresee the same thing. I foresee Gabrielle reciting over and again why her husband's future indiscretions are all her fault. I foresee her continuing to make her rounds alone, while her husband conveniently remains out of the spotlight.

      And considering how I much love Gabrielle Union and grew up watching her, it annoys the shit out of me.

      And...don't get me started on the age difference people are starting to bring up now....

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    2. Alladis. Alladis. Alladis. ALLADIS. ALLADIS. ALLOFIT!!!

      Why is this becoming a thing?

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    3. For real. D-Wade is just like Prince Albert of Monaco - take the money and fame away, and they're just like Pookie with his gaggle of baby mamas. Trust me, she knows deep down she's won nothing but grief and she's in denial. I've seen comments from the chicken-head brigade telling Gabrielle to stick with D-Wade and not let 'that hoe' win. Um....the hoe's already won - she's marrying it.

      As for Mary Jane, let's hope that character wakes up faster than Gabrielle.

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    4. Agreed. Gabrielle.. Ciara...what is wrong with these women? It's like they just have they can't do any better. There is noooooo way that would date a guy who have multiple kids by multiple women. Don't they have a clue? To see guys in those positions tells me a lot on their stance with relationships/marriages .

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  3. You guys seriously think she "got" him by going to the gym?!?!?!?! She allegedly got with him while he was still married. Strike one in my book. Lost all respect for her. They took a break and he knocked up some other woman. She stayed. Strike two. Now she is claiming she got a ring because she works out with porn stars. Huh no. His ex-wife was in shape and it didn't help her. She is staying with him. Strike three. She is trying to save face right now that is all there is to it. I'm concerned because other than the kid he could have gotten a disease! You would think the way he treated his ex-wife would be a sign to this moron. Nope. I BET if the tables were turned and she had the kid he would have kicked her to the curb quick! As for Ciara. Why you would have a baby with a man with so dang many is beyond me. But like the situation with Ms Sidibe its their lives to live as they see fit. I suggest stocking up on penicillin and having enough room for all the kids to come over!

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    1. You guys seriously think she "got" him by going to the gym?!?!?!?!

      Of course we don't. We're irritated by her lame attempt to bamboozle people into thinking she and D-Wade actually had some whirlwind, fairytale "romance". The more I read about their relationship, the more I wonder where's the romance.

      She allegedly got with him while he was still married. Strike one in my book. Lost all respect for her. They took a break and he knocked up some other woman. She stayed. Strike two. Now she is claiming she got a ring because she works out with porn stars. Huh no. His ex-wife was in shape and it didn't help her. She is staying with him. Strike three. She is trying to save face right now that is all there is to it.

      Which is what we're saying.

      First of all, when two celebrities get together, I have a Tina Turner moment, meaning the very first thing I ask is, "What's love got to do with it?" These people have no respect for their "relationships"; they marry for political reasons (in a manner of speaking), and I feel for the children who are born into these situations. They have no concept of love or romance, they spit on fidelity, and they could give two shits about how they hurt, humiliate, or otherwise damage the other person.

      And the ones who stay and/or go back are the absolute worst, because they clearly place money and publicity above self-respect.

      But like the situation with Ms Sidibe its their lives to live as they see fit.

      True, but we can respect Ms. Sidibe because she's honest about herself and when people criticize her life/looks/decisions, she flat-out tells them she doesn't give a fuck. She doesn't apologize or justify or spin a pretty tale for the audience. She just says, "I'm rich, bitch" and then moves the hell on with her life.

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    2. "Bitch, I'm rich. GOOD DAY!"

      And so should we all adopt Gabs' philosophy, moneyed or not.

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  4. So I had to comment even this is for last weeks episode. It's really upsetting me that Mary Jane is so worried about her image (which I don't blame her, she's on TV) yet she is okay having sex in a public place in the women's gym bathroom. Especially after a woman already came out of the shower and saw the dude and her in there together.

    I also don't like how it's basically enforcing our rape culture. How many times has she told that fool no and not to touch her, but he keeps doing it and she gives in. It's just enforcing that you just have to keep pushing women and they will give into your advances.

    I know that was a tangent, but that scene really bothered me especially after seeing her tell him off. It just shows her as weak. Besides his wife knows the president and is a powerful woman, why is she trying to compete with MJP to keep her husband from cheating. I doubt he's worth it.

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