Hella Perspective Recap
Written by Issa Rae
Directed by Melina Matsoukas
Issa’s neighborhood is getting gentrified. There’s some bougie coffee shop coming and there are white folks being giddy on her street. Ah, so that’s why her rent is going sky high. Nah, man.
30 Days With Lawrence
Newness: Lawrence, Aparna and their work team are running a marathon. As he runs past the halfway point, he sees Molly and Issa on the sideline looking at their phones, but they don’t see him. Later on, he cooks for his new work bae, since things are going well between them. They start talking about work and she encourages him to join another team at work so he can learn how to do his next thing better. Then they make out on his kitchen counter.
Familiar: Later on that week, they go to dinner and she says she heard his new work assignment is going well. She heard it from Colin, the guy at work she used to sleep with. He throws shade about it and she says Colin didn’t mean anything because they were drunk every time they made sex. As Lawrence pushes the issue, she admits that yes, Colin is smart and funny but there’s nothing to them. Right then he sees Quentin and Molly walk into the restaurant.
The next time they’re at work, he notices Aparna talking to Colin and doesn’t seem to like it very much. Later, Derek and Chad are helping Lawrence mount his TV at his new place, which he bought before he even bought a couch. Because: priorities. When they finish, Lawrence wants to watch sports but Chad, being the real G he is, admits he wants to watch the finale of the slave opera Due North. Derek says Tiffany is watching it at Issa’s place. Chad also calls Aparna “Jasmine” (from Aladdin) and I HOLLER. Everyone needs ignant friends like him.
Wrong: Lawrence and Aparna are in his car on a date. And when she laughs at her phone, he asks her if Colin is really that funny. Egg on his face, doe, because she was texting her sister and her niece did something that made her laugh. Lawrence gotta take a giant chill pill with a full glass of cold water. Why is he bringing up Colin? He says he doesn’t like liars and Aparna gets (rightfully) mad. She wants out the car. He tells her no, and right then, his phone rings and it’s Issa calling. Great timing! Aparna gets out the car, slamming the door behind her. Oop. Issa leaves a voicemail.
The next day, Lawrence shows up at the Dunes (Issa’s apartment complex) and walks into Issa’s apartment.
30 Days With Molly
Type: Back to the day of the marathon, Issa and Molly are on the sidelines waiting to see Kelli run by. This is their good friend duty, even though they didn’t know she was even training. The two catch up as they wait, and Molly tells Issa that Quentin is coming to LA in two weeks, and he likes her but she wants to keep it casual cause he ain’t her type. When Issa sees his picture, she can’t even tell her friend she’s tripping. Why won’t they give the husky brother love? He’s adorable! They get a text from Kelli that they should meet her at the finish line. Word? Whappened?
Homie: Molly is interviewing at a law firm with all-Black partners and she nails it! Quentin comes into town and over dinner, she fills him in on it. She’s gonna go on more interviews, get more offers and tell her current law firm to step up to match them. Good plan! Molly looks across the room and sees Lawrence sitting across from Aparna. It throws her for a little loop. She says she saw a guy she knew and he tells her she is the most beautiful woman in the restaurant. Aww. He thanks her for taking the time to have dinner with him and then says since she’s in Chicago the next week, he’d like to take her out to dinner there. Molly, being the fool she is, gets all weird and chatty and makes sure to call him “homie” so he can know she ain’t looking at him as a potential. That hurt my feelings for Quentin. Friend zoned dinnamug.
Chance: Molly tells her therapist about her “homie” comment. Yay to her being back in therapy. Her therapist wants her to give Q a chance and just go with the flow. As she grabs her phone to schedule her next appointment, she gets a text from Dro saying he misses her. Molly and Quentin are working late on a case and they drank a little something to celebrate being done. They start talking about their family, and Q’s sister sells Flat Tummy Tea on IG. They take another sip and she grabs his glass, puts it down, and kisses him hard. Next thing I know, she straddles him and they go at it. Well damb. Giving him a chance didn’t necessarily mean pouncing him, girl. Slow your roll.
Choices: Later, the girls are at Issa’s and Molly is filling them in on her romp with Quentin. She likes him a little bit but she ain’t that enthused. Kelli changes the topic and wonders what law firm Molly will go with: the whites or the Blacks. There are pros and cons. Working with Black folks means they get too familiar. Working with white folks means you gotta make them feel comfortable. Kelli gets a text from Tiffany, who can’t make it any more to come watch Due North with them.
Award: At work, Molly’s bosses tell her they hear she’s been interviewing elsewhere and they wanna make sure she knows she is valued. She’s feeling encouraged, wondering what they will drop as her raise, but they hand her an “award” in the form on a printed paper they all signed, claiming she’s a rising star. This MS Word a** certificate nobody gives a damb about. Nawl. Oh and they will allow her face to grace their website’s homepage permanently. If they don’t GT-entire-FOH.
Molly is in bed post-coitus when she gets a panicked call from Issa. Wayment. Who did she sleep with, doe?
30 Days With Issa
News: At the marathon finish line, Kelli is at the injury tent. What happened? She got her period in the middle of the marathon at mile nine. She got bussed to the finish line, and didn’t even get to finish this thing she’d been training for months to complete. Tiffany rubs her stomach, and that’s when Issa and Molly find out she’s pregnant. Word? She tells them it’s cool cause they can plan the baby shower with her instructions. Issa looks across the way and sees a sweaty Lawrence kiss a sweaty Aparna, after their completed marathon. She looks pained from it and focuses back on her friends’ conversation. Tiffany points out that they’re all doing amazing things. She’s about to have a baby. Kelli’s getting fit. Molly’s interviewing at various jobs. And Issa is… hmmm… well, nothing. Issa pipes up and says she’s moving. Oh?
Deflated: At work, Issa and Frieda are running We Got Y’all for their Latino students in the office. Issa finally has to tell Joanne about VP Gaines not allowing the Latino students in the school to join their program so she thought it was best to do it on weekends in their office. She takes full responsibility for it too, excluding Frieda, and Joanne is pissed because this is essentially segregation for their services and they could be sued for it. Joanne says she needs to rethink whether Issa should be doing this job.
Moving: The girls are watching Due North at Issa’s place. All their phones go off and it’s Tiffany saying she can’t make it. When the show ends, Issa tells them to help her pack because she gotta move out. She ain’t got nowhere to move to yet, doe. Kelli and Molly suggest she get a roommate but she says she wants to live by herself. But the way her budget is set up? That ain’t possible unless she sells most of her things.
Demotion: At We Got Y’all, Joanne announces that Frieda is the new director of student outreach, and Ken is not pleased because he wanted the promotion. Shoo, Issa did too but handles it much better, cause after the meeting, she asks to buy Frieda a congratulations drink. Girl, with what money?! Frieda says they should go to “I-Wood.” You mean Inglewood? Girl good day. See? Gentrification comes with these raggelly names too.
Sale: Issa is having a yard sale and her brother Ahmal is helping. By helping, I mean throwing shade at all her things and telling her to lower her already low prices. Thug Yoda is interested in buying her Brock Pot so he can make his daughter’s favorite soup, “bauliflower.” She wants $10 for it but accepts $5. Neighbor bae shows up and says he’s sorry she’s leaving because her wi-fi comes in really handy for him. At the end of the day, she’s sold everything but her couch. She calls Lawrence and leaves a voicemail to say she’s moving and wants him to have their couch. She will be gone from 2-6 pm on Saturday so he can come pick it up without her being there.
Open: Ahmal gives Issa ground rules about living with him: no dudes, unless he is also sleeping with them. Kelli gotta wear a muzzle if she comes over, and no shoes indoors. He pulls up to the Dunes, and she says she’ll be back in ten minutes after a final walk-through of her apartment. She walks into Apt. 26, and into the kitchen. Lawrence is standing there staring at the burn spot on the ceiling. She asks if he waited there for her, and he says he did because they ended their last conversation so terribly. He admits that he feels he’s messing everything up. That should make both of them. She admits she’s moving out because the rent is too damb high.
Lawrence says he’s sorry. FOR THE FIRST TIME. When he sets expectations for himself and he doesn’t reach them, he shuts down. “I’m sorry for not being who you expected me to be.” She says, “I wanted to be better for you.”
AWW!!! This is the conversation they should have had before all of this madness. It would have saved everyone so much heartache and ho-tation. They pour their hearts out to each other about their mistakes and how they could have both been better people. Issa admits that cheating was the worst thing she could have done. She says she still loves him and he says he loves her too. And then they hug. Tears fall. Issa and Lawrence cry too.
Future: They separate and Lawrence gets outside the door. He turns to Issa and tells her this “bye” and I’m all, “Why can’t y’all just act right to each other?” He’s about to leave when he grabs her hand and gets on one knee. He says he can’t imagine life without her and asks her to marry him. AH OMG. She says a shocked and excited YES and they hold each other tight. Issa looks over to the couch and sees them in their wedding finest. And sees them consummating their vows. And sees herself with a bump. And sees them walk into their home with an adorable baby boy.
But in real life, all he said was “Bye, Issa.” She’s crestfallen as she closes the door. She stands there and her phone goes off. It’s her brother Ahmal telling her she ain’t got no more time. Bring yo a**!
BFFs: Molly and Issa are doing Morocco night at Molly’s place. They’re wearing beautiful kaftans, eating couscous and drinking wine. Basically, they’re having the bestie time they needed badly. Molly asks Issa if she’s sure she doesn’t wanna move in with her but Issa makes the great point of loving her too much to move in with her. Facts. Ask former BFFs who broke up from dorming together.
The End: After their sleepover, Issa leaves and gets into a Lyft. Molly gets a text, and puts on some sexy lingerie. Issa gets a notification that Lawrence asks to be her friend on FB. Molly’s doorbell rings and she opens it up. Dro’s at the other side. Issa knocks on the door and Daniel opens up. She says she’s sleeping on the couch.
Whew! Lemme just lay here, Fatha Gawd! I am in a glass case of emotions, and this show locked me in it and won’t let me out. I was good and ready to call Lawrence an everlasting useless goat, for all his f**kshit. I was ready to tell Issa to sat her tail down somewhere and get her life. I was ready to tell them all to press the reset button because they lack sense. And then they went and showed their most human selves, with vulnerability and rawness.
And I remembered that we go through times when we are stuck in cycles of self-sabotage. But at our core, we are desperate to make our way back to who we are, who we were meant to be and who we know we can be. We end up running on the hamster wheel of mistakes, not knowing when or how to jump off. Or to just stop running and eventually, the wheel will stop itself. Or we get thrown off it completely and hurt our egos.
What might begin as a snowflake ends up as a giant snowball. But it hurts even more when we could have prevented it from happening. That is where Issa and Lawrence find themselves. That sore spot of, “I could have fixed this before it got this bad.” I am just so glad they allowed each other to see the other without pretense. Both of them were too tired and too kicked down to even front. What were they trying to protect, at that point? Nothing. It’s unfortunate that it took that for them to be this open and honest and upfront. Why do we need to have nothing left to lose to do what we need to do to win back what we needed to have in the first place? You get me? Right.
What I do know is that Issa picturing her future, building a family with Lawrence broke my heart. It hit me in the chest. That longing. That clarity. That promise that feels out her reach. I was straight like wall slide for her. Had they had that conversation months earlier, where they both were able to own up to what they did wrong, maybe it could have been possible.
After all of that, she runs to Daniel’s place. Daniel, who seems to be her plan B all the time and allows it. Even though he is being used, he lets it happen because he cares for her that much. I think it makes him a bit of a sucka, in the way Molly is when it comes to Dro.
And Molly. Every girl needs a friend like Molly. The one who won’t let your world completely crash because she will be at the bottom waiting for you with snacks and a night in kaftans. The friend whose couch is your second home and even though you might not take her up on the offer to reside there, having the option is what you need. That friend who is your ride-or-none of us has to die but I gotchu. I celebrate her and Issa’s friendship because I see many of mine in theirs. Game recognize game and they look hella familiar. Through mistakes and cussouts and hurt feelings and side-eyes, they still know who squad is.
But Molly. I also recognize her because we all have that friend who can’t seem to get right when it gets to love, and a lot of it is her own clear doing and straddling of lines. Poor Quentin has this huge crush on her but she seems to have him in the friend zone ditch. She tried without avail to get him out, even after having sex with him. All just to go back to Dro, who is a married man. It’s like Bruh, come on. You were holding tough. Until she wasn’t. She’s back at square one and only getting a piece of what she really wants, which is a loving relationship. Dang it. I’m rooting for my girl but like I’ve said before, this Dro thing won’t end up well for her.
Can we talk about Tiffany real quick? Where was she really the night of the Due North finale? Derek thought she was at Issa’s place. And then she cancels on the girls so she never shows up. Am I wrong for being suspicious? Throughout all of this, I am Team Kelli. She is basically my patronus.
Chile. Issa, Lawrence and Molly are Team Bad Decisions, but they aren’t bad people. They’re just people who are making a lot of bad choices. They’re victims of the trifling twenties. Many of us were able to come out on the other side better for our mistakes. Others are still reveling in them. The win here for them, is that they get what they want.
What will happen next season? Hopefully, that they have learned from some of these errors, and they start working on getting their shit together. All I know is I am dehydrated for season 3 of Insecure!
P.S. Issa Rae put her entire FOOT in writing this episode. LAWDT. I am just so proud.
— Luvvie Ajayi