Monday, December 4, 2017

TV REVIEW: The 'She's Gotta Have It' remake is a must-see + why I love the Nola Darling character




Spoilers for 'She's Gotta Have It' ahead...

I recently finished my binge of Spike Lee's new Netflix show She's Gotta Have It, which was released on Thanksgiving Day. Although I never saw the original 1986 black-and-white film, Lee's updated 10-episode TV series immediately got me hooked! One can quickly watch this show in a weekend as it only took me two days to bang out the first season. 

This show also had thee dopest soundtrack which can be played here on Spotify



Watch the official trailer for the TV series of 'She’s Gotta Have It'

About the empowering Nola Darling and why I love this character

She's Gotta Have It centers around Nola Darling (portrayed by DeWanda Wise) and her three very different lovers whom she refuses to commit to: "the polite and well-meaning" Jamie Overstreet, "the self-obsessed model" Greer Childs, and the "immature, motor-mouthed," Mars Blackmon, as they are all described. Also, from time-to-time, Nola sleeps around with a woman, Opal (whom she seems to like more than her three suitors). 

Nola refuses monogamy, describing herself as a "sex-positive, polyamorous pansexual," as she makes it clear that she's nobody's property. 

What I absolutely love about Nola is the fact that she never felt any shame about who she truly is. She's sexually free, she has it under control, and she never hides it. 

Nola was super open with the fact that she dated whomever she wanted. In fact, she told her three dudes and was upfront about everything. She set her rules in place, laid them out on the table, and left it up to her guys with whether or not they wanted to deal with it or not. 

You can say what you want about Nola, but her three lovers did not have to stick around and deal with her rules. Opal didn't. When Nola thought she was ready to commit to her part-time lesbian lover, Opal shot her down because she couldn't get on-board with Nola's lifestyle and knew Nola wasn't fully ready.  


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Since the release of She's Gotta Have It, social media blew up with Nola 2.0. With characters like Mary Jane from Being Mary Jane, Issa from Insecure, and Lynn from Girlfriends, you would think this generation isn't so taken back by a strong, sexually free character. I think Nola is a liberated woman. However, when I scrolled through Twitter to peep the reactions of others, I saw a bunch of tweets slut-shaming Nola and calling the character a "hoe" and a "THOT." 

While I found Nola refreshing (because she had this 'I don't give two fucks' type of attitude), many criticized the character for juggling three men so freely. If there is any one thing to criticize Nola for, it would be the fact that one of her lovers is a married man, although he likes to say his relationship is complicated and him and his wife are somewhat separated. Technically, he's married and Nola should just leave him alone all together. 

Nola lives in a gentrified Brooklyn brownstone, she's a struggling artist who can barely pay her rent on time, and she's hustling, working multiple jobs (as well as lovers) while focusing on living her dream of becoming a successful artist. Nola is woke, she smokes joints in bed, she receives orgasms on the regular, and she also teaches art to kids. She's not your goody two-shoes Clair Huxtable-type of character. She's flawed, she's young, she can't commit, she's free, she's experiencing, she makes mistakes, and she's still trying to get her life together, and that's okay. 

Nola also slacks in the friend department at times, like when she broke girl code and slept with one of her friend's ex. Not okay. Her character is far away from perfect and it's that sense of realness that I love. 

In the last episode, all of Nola's lovers meet face-to-face. And, while it's awkward at first, all three of them sort of become okay with the other one being there and they follow suit. 

Maybe I like Nola so much because I can relate to her in some ways. I too, at one point, had multiple sex partners. But, unlike Nola, I didn't have the courage to tell everyone who was involved in my life that I was seeing other people. And, sometimes when I was seeing other people, I wasn't even single. It was kinda fucked up, I know. 

I can feel some readers judging me now. Have a look at my La La Diaries series and feel free to judge me even more. 

Craziest 'She's Gotta Have It' Moment: When Shemekka's butt implants popped

Aside from Nola's lovers, she also has a trio of good friends, Clorinda, Shemekka, and Rachel. Shemekka, who is a single mom, works for a burlesque club as a server and she struggles with her physical appearance and is convinced her lack of a booty is inhibiting her ability to be a dancer. Shemekka decides to get butt injections - God knows what is getting pumped into her butt - at some back-alley, nasty looking motel and she winds up getting a botched surgery. 

I literally cringed at the scenes when the needle was going into Shemekka's butt as I knew she was making a huge mistake. Then, she got an infection and winded up in the hospital.

I'm glad Spike Lee and his writers decided to touch base on this because there are many young girls and women out there who are going through this and some are dying from these botched surgeries. I can't believe women subject themselves to this in real life. It's sad. 

Hopefully there's a second season where we can see more of Nola's friends and also see how Shemekka is dealing with the after effects of her surgery after her butt implants popped. 

Favorite character: Mars Blackmon

She’s Gotta Have It
Nola and Mars 

Mars (played by Anthony Ramos) was my absolute favorite out of all of Nola's men. His character definitely stole the show. Although Mars is a bit immature, he constantly has Nola's back. Even when Nola was being a jerk and at times it seemed like she didn't deserve Mars, he was always there for her and she could count on him. Mars hustled for her and often times called Nola his girl. He even prayed for her and her success, ya'll! 



Overall, this series is a much watch! The show is a beautiful portrayal of a carefree black woman who is still trying to figure it out. Hell, most of us in our thirties are still trying to get our lives together!

Check out She’s Gotta Have It, available to stream on Netflix now.
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