We’ll start this review, just as we started the first, with an inspirational quote from the episode. This week’s INSECURE quote is brought to you by episode 2 entitled “Messy as F**k”: “Maybe, I just want to be d**ked down properly.” I mean, it’s pure poetry.
So this week Issa Dee has to deal with Lawrence’s weak ass, Molly is recovering from her broken p*** dilemma, and I’m sitting here trying to figure out what product Issa is using to get her skin glowing like it is.
So ya’ll know I’m determined to love the show, so it pains me a little so say I wasn’t as thrilled with this episode as I was the pilot. But second episodes are tricky because they have to resolve the pilot and stabilize the show’s tone, right? RIGHT???
We begin this episode with Issa rapping to herself in the mirror, trying to figure out how she should approach her relationship with Lawrence, and hyping herself up to leave him.
I’m going to pause right here and shout out to the Shea Moisture curl crème sitting on the bathroom sink. Cool.
Anyway, Molly and Issa discuss their terrible love life over brunch. Issa ruminates over whether or not she should leave Lawrence and Molly decides that she’s going to solve her broken p**** problems by getting her hair done, nails done, and a vacial (a facial for her lady parts – she’s bougie like that ya’ll).
While they’re out, Molly discusses how terrible the dating game is and how hookup apps don’t yield the best results (I could’ve told you that girl). Molly expresses her excitement for a date she has later that night.
Meanwhile, we cut to Lawrence, doing what trifling boyfriends do best, laying around in his socks and underwear. Let me be nice because this scene actually shed a little light on his character. He calls his friend, and we learn that Lawrence is developing, or thinking about developing, an app but is struggling to begin. Although his friend is quick to offer advice about Issa and support for the app idea, he quickly brushes Lawrence off once Lawrence begins to discuss how truly bad he’s doing. Later, Issa runs into Lawrence at the store while he is buying belated birthday stuff for Issa, who only to runs away and ignores him.
That night, Issa decides to stay at Molly’s house for another night to avoid Lawrence. The next day at work, Issa (who admits to Molly she’s not worried about preparing for it) flops her proposal presentation for a new after school initiative. Whomp whomp.
Let’s fast forward a little. Molly goes on her date, which appears to be amazing at first, until the guy abruptly asks to sleep with her. But that’s okay, at the end of the episode she runs into the guy she hit it off with at the club during the pilot, who seems to be into her, despite her “I’m over men so I’m eating a cheeseburger while walking down the street” attitude (disclaimer, that’s my attitude everyday). Maybe he’ll be a love interest.
Eventually, Issa makes her way back home to Lawrence. They both awkwardly sit in silence for a while until Lawrence lets Issa know that he has a job interview the following day. The reminder of scene consists of them sitting awkwardly next to each other in bed, making small talk. They share a small laugh at the end, leaving us to believe that maybe they’ll make it? I guess.
This episode was pretty… tame. This episode resolved all of the pilot’s loose endings, and that’s about it. While things happened, nothing really seemed to move forward. Maybe Molly will hit it off with the club guy, maybe Issa will quit her job like her boss implies she should, maybe Issa and Lawrence will be okay. I wouldn’t have the slightest clue because literally, nothing happened. This episode was like a still lake in a windless summer day . That was me trying to be deep ya’ll, just to say that nothing drove the story forward in this episode. So there’s that.
Oop, I was going to introduce my side-eye portion but it seems as though I’ve already dove in. So I’ll continue.
Molly’s character, who was my favorite in the last episode, seemed to become a completely different person. Something about her tone didn’t really match up to the character that Issa established in the pilot. Maybe its because she was feeling a little desperate after the broken p**** debacle, but she seemed a little unhinged, for no reason. While I think the “vaguvination” idea was fun, the fact that it seemed to be her entire story this episode was kind of off putting. I really hope that Molly’s entire storyline does not revolve around her getting a man, as it seems to be right now. Ya’ll know, I loved hearing about her dating struggles as a black woman from the pilot, but I’m afraid her storyline is going to be reduced to the dating problem of the week. Please no, there’s a reason I don’t like romantic comedies.
My final side eye goes to the last scene! We’ve spent half of the pilot and all of the second episode waiting to see the confrontation between Issa and Lawrence. Then it finally happened, and (I hate to type it again) we weren’t given much. A part of me appreciates how delicate the scene ended up being, because I felt like it was true to both of their characters. To be honest, I loved that they had a moment where they laughed together at the end – like an icebreaker before a terrible conversation. I’ve had those, and I appreciate that Issa made what felt like an honest choice between the two characters, even if the traditional (and cough, more interesting) choice may have been to have give the audience a screaming match between the two of them. So this is a half side eye.
Wait, final final side eye – the ending was a bit abrupt, and while there were new threads with Molly’s potential boo and Issa’s work/home life, there wasn’t too much in the way of cliff hangers getting us to return for the next episode. I’m not completely sure what I have to look forward to next week, except, hopefully understanding what’s happening between Issa/Lawrence. I personally hope something will get her to quit her job so she’ll have to explore her passion of rapping. Stay tuned.
I’ve got some non- side eyes for ya’ll though. The black lingo in this episode was on point. I loved Molly bringing up Hoteps (I’m not getting into details, so if you have to, look it up), especially in the context of the dating realm. I feel like every episode there’s something that Molly brings up the resonates with my soul. Her disdain for Hoteps on the Hinge app, cracked me up and I was so happy to see it on TV.
I really enjoyed getting more into Issa’s work world. I loved her having to deal with racial micro-agressions – stuff that I know a lot of people of color in the work place deal with. When her “well meaning” co-worker suggests that they should take the students to an African American museum to see how grateful past generations where, I hollered. Bringing us into Issa Dee’s workplace was a great change of pace and it added another thread to Issa’s currently slow paced story – will she quit the job she hates?
The thing that will keep me coming back is the Issa/Lawrence story. It was such a huge part of the pilot that I feel like I owe it to myself to find out what happens with them. I am genuinely interested in Issa’s journey; however, I’m ready to see bigger steps in her story. I get it, not every episode can have a huge plot twist, but hopefully the next episode can give us a boost in Issa’s story, cause frankly, I’m not interested in seeing them sit around and talk about men for an entire episode again. Fingers crossed for next week….
Season 1, Episode 2 (S01E02)
Insecure airs Sundays at 1030PM on HBO
Writer based in LA. Just trying to write good stuff while deep conditioning my hair.
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Vanessa Jay | Contributor