Brandy & Ray J: A Family Business Recap – Episode 2 – The Dating Show Guy That Wasn’t

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Things are getting really confusing!

This episode (in my mind, at least), was supposed to answer the questions that the For the Love of Ray J 2 Reunion left in the air, and yet it only presented more. Like, if is Ray J so tired of being the “dating-show guy,” why is he doing a new show on the network that gave him that reputation? And why is this new show (this episode) so mired in his past as the dating show guy? And if Sonja and Brandy knew that he was never ready to settle down in the first place, why didn’t they intervene before For the Love of Ray J started and feelings across the board got involved?

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Thank god for Brandy, though, who isn’t afraid to challenge her little brother’s about-face regarding the dating-show phase of his career. “He can’t avoid them like they never happened,” she said on the two seasons of For the Love of Ray J. And seriously, there’s moving on and there’s willful ignorance. Big ups to Brandy for drawing the distinction.

Still he told her, “Don’t talk about my love life.” I hope this was said somewhat in jest, since this episode was devoted to talking about Ray’s love life. Interestingly, VH1 itself has taken a very active stance at distancing itself from the dating shows that practically defined its programming for the past several years. Does that make Ray J the personification of this changing face? When he says, “I’m good right now, I’m doin’ a whole new thing,” is he not reflecting the redemptive initiative this network has embraced in the past six months?

Regardless, it’s obvious that Ray isn’t the only one eager to put For the Love of Ray J to bed. It was interesting to see the behind-the-scenes workings of the reunion show…

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…and the contrast presented when broaching Ray’s feelings: he talked about how he’d break it off with Mz Berry “in real life” versus “in a more dramatic setting,” such as this. The line between reality and “reality” thickens.

And he wasn’t kidding when he said “dramatic setting”:

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“Why does this have to be so complicated? I don’t want to hurt Mz Berry, so why am I put in this position like this? I signed up for the dating show, but never once did I think it would have to get to this emotional stage,” he wondered. The lack of foresight is particularly fascinating given the word “love” was in his show’s very title.

Anyway, besides being reminded of Exotica’s eyebrows…

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…there was some closure there for what we saw on the reunion regarding Cocktail, who like Brandy, Sonja and practically everyone who’s met Ray J ever, believes that he’s not ready to settle down.

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The closure went something like: “I apologize for making you feel any kinda way you feel” (Ray to Cocktail). It’s not much, but it’s something.

And with all the walking egg shells around Mz Berry and her highly breakable heart, it was nice to see she, too, embraced the truth and wasn’t holding onto something that apparently didn’t want to be held in the first place:

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Her tempered reaction was a nice contrast to her reputation as an out-of-control emotional mess. Once again, Berry gets the winner’s edit.

In the end, Ray realized that he hasn’t gotten hit with love yet, and that he’s “burnt, done” when it comes to women and settling down. In other words, the player plays on.

(Also in this episode: Flo Rida stomped on Brandy’s heart by uninviting her to the Grammy’s but like most people on VH1, I have a feeling that Brandy will bounce back in no time.)

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Related content
Brandy & Ray J: A Family Business show page
Brandy & Ray J: A Family Business videos and extras

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