Now that Lorna has left town, this week Charley is all about Remy. (Though I have to admit, I wouldn't mind if Lorna's shady self made a comeback soon. She's low key hilarious.)
Remy tells Charley that he loved meeting her mom because it gave him insight into who she is, and I agree — we finally got some answers about what makes Charley tick (and about the complicated Bordelon family dynamic). The two then share a snuggle moment, and I'm glad to see that Charley is finally accepting this love, because Remy clearly adores her. (And treats her way better than Davis ever did.)
But the good moment only lasts so long: Winston, whom she'd rented the land from for her own Queen Sugar version of the local sugarcane harvest festival, tells her the land is no longer available. And then good-for-nothin' Sam Landry shows up and says it must have been a scheduling mistake, because he's having an auction there on the same day to "help the local farmers." Charley stands up to him, though, and says "maybe you can get to people who don't have a spine, but I have a backbone, and I am not going away." This Bordelon-Landry war is not ending any time soon. But Remy jumps in to the rescue and calls the First AME Church, who agrees to host the festival instead. Win!
Speaking of blossoming love, Nova and Robert are preparing for their appearance on a CNN-like cable show to talk about Zika. But before they got on stage, Robert gifts Nova with a set of Black pearls, which is sweet. But on-camera, things don't go so well. Nova talks about Father Neglect, the concept that those in power have neglected New Orleans so much so that it's become a petri dish for things like Zika, which Robert says is a "hysterical" statement. Wuh-oh. If anyone does not want to be patronized on national television, it's Nova. She accuses him of mansplaining, and they go tit for tat in a debate that Nova ends up winning. But backstage, Robert admits that he intentionally tried to be controversial to get more views, and Nova is not happy. She storms out and rips off those pearls, telling Robert that he's trivialized how she's trying to help people in her community — and she doesn't want him around any of them.
Davis, meanwhile, has just found out that he needs to have surgery on his hand, and his doctor tells him he'll be out for 6-8 weeks, which means he'll miss training camp — and depending on the healing process, potentially the entire NBA season. While there, he gets a text from Tamar, the woman he's dating, asking how the doctor went. I guess these two are still going strong? But instead of responding to Tamar, he calls Charley, who doesn't pick up. Looks like he's still used to talking to Charley whenever he has big news to share...
Ralph Angel and Darla head to the High Yellow, right after getting their marriage license. They are glowing as they tell Aunt Violet that they've decided to make an appointment with a judge instead of a full out wedding, which she's clearly not happy about, but decides to not comment on anyway. Next, Ralph Angel meets with Proctor, who gives him the run down on the numbers of the farm and explains that Ralph Angel will break even this season. Ralph Angel is disappointed — he thought all his hard work would mean mo' money — but Proctor tells him he needs to be grateful, because most farmers have only seen losses for years.
Over at Charley's house, she and Remy are sipping wine and playing Scrabble. And then Micah and Davis walk in as Davis is dropping him off. It's clearly uncomfortable since Davis sees them together on a date. And then Remy picks up the phone, and First AME says they're backing out — Landry gave them a call, and they don't want any trouble with him. Ugh. Next comes the sword fight between Remy and Davis over Charley, each trying to give their two cents on what she should do. Davis suggests they simply scale back the festival from a carnival to a party and do it at the farm. Remy points out that they're about to harvest, so they should try Violet's instead. Charley agrees. Shoutout to the folks behind the scenes here for doing a great job, because the way the camera cuts between the two men plus the music makes it very clear that the tension is thiiiick.
Violet has made a sugar crown for the Brown Sugar Queen Sugar Festival, which they're all getting ready for. Nova returns from Atlanta, and Charley asks where Robert is. Nova asks Charley if she didn't think he came across as dismissive and disrespectful on the TV segment, and Charley says that honestly, it was just good television, and it got people to listen so they could get their point across. In other words: Robert may not have gone about it the right way, but he had good intentions.
Davis rolls up to the pre-festival shenanigans, where he meets Micah's girlfriend Keke. Inside, Charley is on the phone — turns out all of her trucks that were bringing supplies out of New Orleans are stuck on the road because of a road closure. Landry strikes again. The family helps her come up with a Plan B: To have a potluck with games at the mill instead. Davis offers to get Tamar Judith — his new girlfriend! — to come sing. Everyone talks about how dope that would be, but Charley clearly realizes this would be more than just Davis asking a friend to come do a favor. But she sucks it up and agrees. So it's official: They're off to the mill for the Brown Sugar Queen Sugar Festival.
Ralph Angel is still sulking about not making any money off the farm. Hollywood suggests he get a second job, and Ralph says it ain't that easy because of his history in prison. Hollywood suggests the graveyard shift at his construction site, but Ralph Angel says he'll pass, and Hollywood reminds him that sometimes, love requires sacrifice — so if he really wants to give Darla a nice wedding, it's going to take some sacrifices. In other words: Quit your whining.
Darla comes into the house during all the festivities to cry. She tells Violet she's finally heard back from her parents — for the first time in six years — and they said they'd come to her wedding. Darla is nervous, of course, but Violet comforts her. She also reveals that she met her first husband at the Sugarcane Festival, just like this one. She thought he was everything — until one day, he hit her. And kept hitting her. And she remembers that even after her brother Ernest ran him out of town, folks looked at her a certain kind of way. And she wanted to hide, until she realized that if she doesn't shake it off herself, that's all people would see. And so, she hints, that if Darla decides to stop hiding and be seen and have a celebration of her wedding with family and friends, Violet's offer to host it at her home still stands.
And the end, Charley says some thank you's, surprisingly to her ex-husband Davis West for his support, and to Tamar Judith for showing up to perform. (She's a better woman than I am, let me tell you.) And then she calls up Remy to thank him for being by her side through it all — and she kisses him, right on the lips, on stage, in front of everyone. GASP. It's such a sweet moment, but it's also clear that Charley is sending a message to Davis: She's moved on.
"I shouldn't have to disappear into you to make this work."
At the end of the festival, Charley crowns the winner of the Brown Sugar Queen contest: Keke Raymond, Micah's girlfriend. (Take that, Sam Landry and co!) And then: Robert shows up. He apologizes to Nova and asks if they can fix this. She tells him if they're going to do this, they need to be in it together, as partners. She's not trying to be Robert's chess piece. Robert agrees and says that if they play this right, they could be the face of a movement — together. He asks if she wants to stay in the ninth ward forever, because he can understand why she'd feel guilty leaving, but her work could take her much farther than that. "You've been trying to get me step outside myself ever since the day you met me," she says. "I shouldn't have to disappear into you to make this work. And if you thought I ever wanted to leave my home, you never knew me."
Robert tells Nova he knows what she could be — and she says that's the problem, the fact that he's focusing on what she could be instead of what she is. "I think you're a good man, but you're no good, for me...I don't need you to dream for me. I like what I got." This is one of the realest conversations I've seen yet on this show. I hate to say I told y'all so, but: I told y'all so! From the beginning I knew there was something about him that came across as manipulative, and I had a feeling he wasn't with her for the right reasons. Looks like Nova has picked up on that, too.
At the end of the episode, Davis pops in to tell Charley that he's leaving for LA tomorrow. She simply responds "okay." When he asks why she didn't ask why he's going to LA, she says it's not her place to ask anymore. He then tells her that Tamar "isn't a big deal or anything," and she says, well, Remy is a big deal. This is a major moment for Charley. She's finally, officially letting go of Davis and her past and moving forward — with Remy. Davis looks hurt, and I kind of, sort of feel sorry for him (only like, a little, until I remember what he did). And then he says a few simple words: "I'm sorry. For all of it." This feels like the final ending to their long, drawn out saga, and Charley looks upset, but I'm happy that she finally got some closure and can hopefully now completely move on with a full heart.
That's this week's episode, y'all. See you next week!