So I've been doing these recaps each week of OWNtv's new show, LOVEis and I must say...I absolutely LOVE this show. I really cannot express how much my heart yearned for a show that intimately details the ups, downs, and middles of the dynamics of new relationships, all set with a 90s backdrop in tow. It's literally the best thing I've seen since the show, "Girlfriends." And speaking of that show, guess what? It's written by the same person, so no wonder I, along with thousands of other folks around the country, are hooked!
It was a complete no-brainer that I would support each week and watch. I mean, it's Mara Brock Akil and her husband, Salim Akil. It's Oprah. It's love and relationships. Yea, I'm watching, with my wine and popcorn. What I wasn't anticipating was the complete AMAZINGNESS in the way the story shows up and deep desire I would feel to talk and write about it...each week...on schedule...with no hesitation. The characters, based on the Akils true love story and portrayed by Elle Weaver and Will Catlett (from Black Lightening), have truly made people believe in love again. I'm here for it any way they want to dish it!
So in you case you've missed them, here are my recaps--altogether in one place/post. This is up to Episode 5. If you haven't watched to this point, you're trippin. Read these, then go online/on-demand/on something, and WATCH!! Then set a reminder to meet me each and every week on IG (@kslewismedia) (Tuesdays at 10pmEST to watch the show, Wednesdays at 9pmEST for the commentary, and Thursdays for the written recaps) for the rest of the season. Let's catch the remaining shows together :)
Modern day Nuri and Yasir choose to celebrate their 21st anniversary by taking us back to the beginning of their relationship (Thank God, @maraakil and @owntv)! A short intro in a coffee shop sparks a brief but pointed conversation. A “chance” encounter a year later shows Yasir’s confidence with a last minute concert invite—I mean, he had only laid eyes on this woman once, a whole year beforehand but she’s gorgeous so don’t waste those tickets! I see you Yasir!! Intrigued, but not super moved by it all, Nuri goes on with buying furniture for her new house and living her life like its golden because for her, it was. Then there’s a moment with Nuri’s work homie, #shesahaterbytheway, where Nuri is convinced to return the concert ticket. She and Yasir meet at the same coffee shop and instead of giving back the ticket, they sit for hours and talk about everything—life’s ups, downs, middles and side bars in between—btw, I’m guessing at that part, we weren’t privy to that beautiful conversation! A shared touch across the table, signifying to me the moment of knowing there’s a place of trust and more to come between the two of them, makes way for the GLORIOUS outside, up against the wall kiss that showed us Yasir claimed Nuri and he meant business!! That kiss gave me all the throwback 90s feels, along with the quick nod to the infamous “Darius and Nina” kiss from #LoveJones (I see you Mrs. Akil). The excitement of that night ends with both returning to their realities—Nuri lying on her pillow grinning like a Cheshire cat 🐱 (we ALL have been there and LOVE that feeling), and Yasir choosing the couch and good music over his soon to be ex’s attempt to give him some “come home late if you want to but ima show you you’re still mine sex.” Y’all caught that, right? He and Ruby (the soon to be ex) agree it’s time for him to move out and he grins himself into blissful recaps of his encounter with Nuri. We leave this amazing place by seeing a modern day Yasir tearfully open up about his love for Nuri by saying, “she saved me.” My heart melted in that very moment!! I love them and the show.
<SPOILER ALERT> But really? Why haven’t you seen the show by now? Anyway, we are graced with modern day Nuri and Yasir throughout the episode honing in on points of the love journey. Great care is taken to show their ‘90s edition friendships with Sean and Angela, their confidants at the time of meeting. The respect factor was in full effect when Yasir told Sean he was indeed in love with Nuri, had told her, AND moved out of Ruby’s place. Sean’s reaction: HUH? Bruh, you just met this chick. “Ruby has hot water. You need hot water.” On the flip, Angela was being #stillahaterHeather telling Nuri she was stupid and about to “risk it all” by sneaking out of work to hit the concert with Yasir. Granted, I can definitely feel her on being there to remind Nuri of how hard they’d worked to be successful in the then male dominated world of TV, but sis...there’s still a tinge of hateration seeping out in every convo! “Don’t be a desperate dummy being stupid,” was her caution. I’m so here for good good gfs having a sista’s back but fallback on that lip mmkay? She still looked out in the end though. I would be wrong not to give poor Will an honorable mention for his final attempt to get Nuri’s attention. As she slid out of work after being told no one could leave, she’s confronted with him holding her coffee and “life,” so he thought, in his hands. He basically tells her she’s the reason good guys turn into F-boys, then he threatened to snitch. Kudos to her for having the balls to tell him to kick rocks—“I’m in love with someone else and btw, you just have my coffee dude, get a life!” The episode ends exactly how we wanted—seeing Nuri make it to the concert in time to see that awesome eye contact/you could get it look 👀 from Yasir, paired with the confidence of him telling her he “knew” she would come. My faves? The grown break up convo between Yasir and Ruby, her maturity when Nuri called her house and the repeated acknowledgement of “I love you” between the new boos...I’m so here for it!!! But then again, I am a geek for love, so there’s that!
We’re starting to jump into the inevitable reality of new relationships—the wonderful “cocoon phase” modern day Nuri speaks of in the beginning of the episode, along with seeing the difficulty she and younger Yasir went through during their early days. TBH, Episode 3 gave me a slight pause. I LOVED seeing the honesty between them as they were frequently interrupted by voice messages from Nuri’s “mens-es” on her day off. AND SN: yaaassssss to Yasir in the shower! Their day of being “boo’d up” is cut short when Angela decides to meet up with an online boo for an impromptu date that she ultimately needs Nuri to help her escape.
Now to the good part...Yasir continues to let Nuri see him from rose colored glasses which leads to a spiral of confusion. After trying to sneak into his old place to find a AAA card for his car (which happened to be DOA in Nuri’s neighborhood) he gets sidetracked by Ruby whose “lipo-gone-wrong” pulls on his heartstrings so much so that he stands Nuri up on a planned date. I’m all for him being a stand up kinda guy, BUT bruh...keep Nuri’s number with you to give a quick cancellation call!! Being stood up leads Nuri into a school girl panic until her neighbor comes by and drops all the knowledge on her she doesn’t know about her “man”...his address, full name, he’s homeless, his car won’t start, etc. 🤯😳😟
Dazed and confused, Nuri shows up at the “address,” aka Ruby’s place, to unfortunately find Yasir there. In this moment he chooses to be a man of his word and protect BOTH women—Ruby needed privacy during a vulnerable time, and Nuri needed reassurance that he wasn’t playing games with her emotions. His promise to explain everything to Nuri at a later time was sealed with that good ole door closed in her face 😳. She no doubt cried and was totally in a state of shock from the rejection but I’m sure they’ll work it out next week...stay tuned!
The theme of Episode 4 felt like an examination of the old Whodini song, “Friends,” a deep look into our motives in relationships, and a bit of shade that only a close “partna” can bring!
Things pick up the morning after the infamous “door close,” showing the bond between Nuri and Yasir strong through strain as they spoon and cuddle with each other separately through their dreams. We see the thought of being used tossed around over and over and have to decide which person is the real culprit: Yasir, who accepts Ruby’s invitation for a longer stay at her place, giving him a literal 'pot to piss in.' Nuri, who reluctantly agrees to go skiing with Keith, her #2 (church/brunch guy and network exec), after she doesn’t hear from her love and Angela, aka #hatinHeather convinces her that he’s moved on. Ruby, who doesn’t wanna explain her bad decisions to mom and dad; she needs Yasir to front as her man by staying for six more weeks, plus she actually and literally cannot get around by herself! Then there’s Keith, whom we know loves the attractiveness of Nuri and her current position at work—in short, she’s a great catch and matches his fly. This begs the question: do we ALL use each other in some way in relationships? Hmmm... Major highlights: Sean and Camille’s interaction as a couple and Yasir’s attempt to check him gone wrong. Tim Reid as modern day Sean (Yessss!!!) Yasir’s determination to see Nuri and answer each of her questions (YES to giving her ALL info including that good government name Mr. Earl Wallace Green)! And that good ole lump in her throat and no time to pick her face up off the floor when Yasir walked out upon Keith’s arrival for the impending “sex where it’s cold” ski trip. SWOON moments: Yasir finally makes it over to Nuri’s to set the record on his life straight, along with assuring her of his love and that yes, he is using her…to make himself a better person. “You’re my fresh start.” Modern day Yasir however made hearts ‘round the nation (and everywhere @owntv is available) melt with these words, “When Nuri looked into my eyes, I saw the real me, a man who could become a king.”
YAAASSSS to episode 5!!! It started off shaky, with Nuri showing her “I can do anything you can do better” stance to Yasir, and choosing to go on the ski trip with Keith. The trip turned out to be an interesting one with Keith’s friends, also known as, “the Corny Crew,” who welcomed her with open arms and a sweater to match. Their fun night took a turn when the crew snacked on schrooms and Papa Boo (Keith) started spilling more than tea! In a crying fit after Nuri turned his advances toward her down, he confessed he was gay 👀only to renege on the convo once they returned to work. 🤫🤥 The first time Yasir and Nuri see each other after the trip proves to be their first true fight…our hearts pound along with them at each second of the argument, then melt when the modern day couple has a heartfelt moment clearly showing the memories of that day still hold strong. AND speaking of things holding strong…Nuri finally finds an old note Yasir wrote to her when their signals were crossed up, causing her to go on a manhunt for him all over the city to apologize. She cruises by their coffee spot, Ruby’s house, and probably a few other places before finally ending up back home to find him on her doorstep <SWOON>. Cue Janet Jackson’s “Anytime Anyplace” playing in the background (LITERALLY) and the couple goes HAM at each other, right there on the patio—kissing, touching, removing unnecessary clothing, more kissing…wait! Did Nuri turn off her car??? I'm not mad at any of that AT ALL!! Ok, carry on. Back to the kissing. Yasir stops to remind Nuri that she’s vowed to only have sex with her husband in that house…they pause, we pause, then Ok gurlll; trust, we ALL agree on this one--it’s on! I’ve never smiled so hard at two people rolling around on a pallet on the floor in the candlelight IN MY LIFE! I watched e-ver-y second, twice. Yes to the candles. Yes to the blankets on the floor. Yes to that awkward rain dripping onto Yasir’s back (I saw all of that). This episode felt too short…@maraakil, give us some more!!