And now for something that is truly evergreen:
Seriously, homey-smashing is like the Douglas-fir of plot points on this show.
There are three girls left. Two of them like to dance and party:
One of them likes to rest:
And that’s great. To each her own. It’s just that Mz Berry is doing nothing to revise her grandma image. Maybe it’s a defiant statement, her way of saying that this is who she is. Maybe she doesn’t realize what people are saying about her because she’s hard of hearing. Hearing’s usually the first thing to go, right? We should be happy she isn’t yet senile.
Ray addresses the girls and tells them that they’ll be meeting with three women who are important to him. In response, Plat says, “His mom, oh s***!” More like, “S***, s***, s***!” Anyway, Plat can relax (kind of), because the group of women they’re meeting with does not include Ray’s mother. It’s Brandy, his Aunt Portia and his niece whose name is pronounced “Sa-Ra.” We never get an official spelling on her name. I’m going to assume it’s Sa’ra, because every great person needs a name with an apostrophe. Michel’le taught me that!
Anyway, Sa’ra is pretty great.
“Are you here for the love of Uncle Ray J?” she wonders. They don’t call him that, sweetie. And if they do…it’s nothing that should ever concern you.
So they sit and talk.
Remember how last episode was a series of repeated discussions regarding each individual girl and the thing (or in rare cases things) that would keep her from being with Ray? Get ready for the sequel! Brandy, who’s rocking a wet look…
…brings up Plat’s ex. Plat interviews that she thought the grilling ended with the lie-detector challenge. Idealist! Also discussed: Mz Berry’s “experience” and Luscious’ homey-smashing. Luscious that she’s sick of the topic. “Find something new to talk about people,” she exhales. AMEN! Except, of course, they won’t.
In a one-on-one, Luscious admits that she and Ray do have mutual friends and people outside the house have been trying to knock her down since she’s been there. Sometimes it gets the best of her, but she’s trying to be a good person. Moving on, Luscious thinks that besides herself Platinum is the best girl for Ray, and concerns about her ex are unfounded: Platinum wouldn’t be here if she wasn’t here for Ray. That’s the theory at least. I think we have four years of VH1 viewing under our belt that suggest otherwise.
In her one-on-one, Plat says she has strong feelings for Ray and she sees something more and more every time she’s with him. They have a mental connection. She cries about their really, really good bond. I don’t think this is what she meant by “mental,” but who knows. When Brandy asks who she thinks Ray should choose besides her, she says Mz Berry!!! Wow, I haven’t seen such betrayal on TV amongst girlfriends since Rayanne slept with Jordan Catalono, leaving Angela crushed. Oh, there was also that time that Plat grilled her then-fellow Wolf Packer Heartbreaker into oblivion. Plat just doesn’t think he and Luscious have a connection. She’s getting a little too comfortable with her honesty, if you ask me.
Mz Berry thinks she’s the best woman for Ray because they smile at each other and she can tell he’s looking at her from behind his shades. Ray might want to invest in darker sunglasses. She can’t see either of the other girls with Ray. Brandy says she thinks Berry has a beautiful energy and spirit. Even though Brandy’s not sold on finding love on TV, she does believe that it has hit Berry. Ha, I kinda love Brandy for openly criticizing the conceit of this show, and I love 51 Minds even more for keeping that in.
At home, Brandy gives Ray her rundown of the girls.
Luscious doesn’t know who she is yet, Plat is a walking red flag because of her ex fixation and Mz Berry is actually here for him, so she’s Brandy’s somewhat reluctant pick. I love that Brandy sounds put out to actually have to name someone. Keeping it one hunnid runs in the family.
The grilling is not yet over, as Ray has a bunch of friends coming over to ask the girls the same questions, albeit more rudely and while talking over each other:
Berry says she’s trying to figure out what Tom Green is going amongst Ray’s homies. Yeah, welcome to my world since last season, Berry. Speaking of Green, he tells Luscious that like her, he is half Filipino and was born in the Philippines.
Since Luscious is host to actual moving brain waves, she doesn’t believe him. Someone who goes by “Shortie Mac,” asks Mz Berry if she’d turn to stripping if Ray went broke and asked her to.
The beer is more amusing to Mz Berry than he is. And rightfully so. I’d rather stare at that screen shot for an entire hour than have to listen to him. Seriously, everyone who just joined the party is so convinced of their hilarity without actually displaying any. It’s like watching a freshman improv class.
They kind of ambush Luscious and guess what topic comes up! Her stamp-collecting hobby! Just kidding: her homey-smashing. She tells them to ask Ray about it.
Before they have a chance, in walks Snoop, whose married status supposedly suggests expertise in these matters of connection.
He has one-on-ones with the girls, asking them the same damn questions that already have been posed by Ray, Brandy and each other.
He does have his share of one-liners like, “The hardest part about settling down is knowing that it’s worth settling down for.” He convinces Luscious that he’s wise. She points out that this is the first time that she’s ever talked to him because, really, you never know with her.
Snoop delivers his opinion to Ray:
He liked Plat the best. Luscious gave him the run-around regarding the homey-smashing (she initially told him the girl who smashed the homey wasn’t there, that “she was last season,” which: HA!). Mz Berry is too kid-having. Platinum is just right.
Then Ray takes even more opinions, this time from his homies.
It’s a whole bunch of conflicting views and blah blah blah. Someone says Platinum was silver. These guys are, like, pewter at best. Tom Green likes Luscious. Someone calls Mz Berry “grandma.” Then Shortie Mac mentions the homey-smashing, and Ray determines that he must have found this out via Dre Sinatra, since he didn’t tell any of them that. For a brief flicker, Ray and I are emotionally one:
Anyway, all of his friends start chanting, “Luscious! She smashed the homey!” over and over as if it were funny enough the first time to warrant repeating.
Ray tries to get them to shut up, but he’s obviously outnumbered. He soon surrenders.
Luscious, though, is more confrontational. She shows up in the middle of the chant and chastises them for being rude and disrespectful. “This is my life!” she says. To be fair, that is something that’s easy to overlook on reality TV.
Despite taking part in this, Tom Green comforts her. How very stand-up of him.
At this point, she’s crying. Ray throws his friends out. Since they haven’t hurt the feelings of someone who’s so out of their league, they should be kissing her feet for gracing them with her presence, a few of them start a reprise of their chant. I think it’s safe to say that all of these guys are on the market, ladies. Go wild!
Ray ends up apologizing to Luscious.
She seems unwilling to forgive him. She says this never should have happened. Ray agrees, and says that didn’t think that it would. He points out that Snoop Dogg didn’t take part in it. Hadn’t Snoop already left, though? Also, what does it say about your friends when they make Snoop Dogg look like a perfect gentleman in comparison?
This conversation does not provide the emotional closure that Ray had hoped.
Luscious goes to him to say that she doesn’t feel like he respected her and that he didn’t try hard enough to stop it. Ray says he couldn’t do anything about it, and that his face was in the pillow when she walked in, because they didn’t listen to his request to “be quiet.” Luscious says that she doesn’t feel like he controlled the situation: she wants to go home. Damn! Well, she can’t quit him, of course, so he quits her: “If you want to quit on me, you don’t even deserve to be here anyway,” he tells her. He’s not mad, but shocked. He invested so much in her. We’re talking TV time, people! “So instead of me getting super emotional, I just think you should leave,” he tells her. Duh.
In her exit interview, Luscious says she doesn’t hold anything against Ray, “but I could only take so much.” You and me both, sister. Keep ya head up.
Finally, Ray meets with Plat and Mz Berry to tell him what happened with Luscious.
Ray admits that he could have stopped his friends sooner and that he places the blame on himself. So that’s admirable. He adds, though, that because of the input of his friends, “At the end of the night, my opinion was going to be this,” meaning having Mz Berry and Plat as his Final 2. So all that drama and anguish for nothing? Slightly less admirable.