Last week’s two-hour premiere of “Being Mary Jane” featured visceral drama the fallout of Mary Jane’s car accident, thanks of brilliant writing and genius casting of character actor, Emmy winner Loretta Devine.
Though she's been acting for over 30 years, viewers may know Ms. Devine best as the late Adele Webber on “Grey’s Anatomy,” Aunt Honey on the short-running Raven-Symone led sitcom, “State Of Georgia” and her breakout role in 1995’s “Waiting To Exhale." Her most popular roles are intensely maternal archetypes. So when viewers saw the first scenes of downtrodden and gracious Cece—another driver in Mary Jane’s car accident—they may have written her off as a nice churchy grandmother that desperately needed Mary Jane’s help.
Suddenly, the entire façade crumbled in scene-stealing fashion as Cece revealed herself to be an opportunistic, morally corrupt hustler who was underestimated by both Mary Jane (Gabrielle Union) and a room full of SNC's lawyers, who she promptly shut down: “I understand what you see: a shifty black woman who has the future of your company in her hands. You don’t like me anymore than you like Mary Jane, but you tolerate her because she’s good for business. Well you are going to tolerate me because so you can stay in business.”
The reveal led to a deliciously awkward and provocative moment in the premiere in which Mary Jane and her extortionist feasted on popcorn and traded insults and insight over Mary Jane’s career. It was harsh reality, clever banter and social commentary in one electric and stunningly acted package.
Unfortunately, a character like Cece probably won’t be around for more than a few more episodes, but I’m salivating to see her and Mary Jane spar for at least one more round. “Being Mary Jane” airs tonight on BET at 10/9c, and it is rumored that someone may die or leave the BMJ-verse forever! Who do you think it will be?
Small Screen Girl
I am an unabashed pop culture and TV-aholic with no plans to ever seek treatment. Explore this blog and see just how deep my obsession goes.