Monday, November 13, 2017

The Mayor 1.06: “Will You Accept This Rose?”

“It’s like I’m living with the Bachelor”
- Dina

This week’s episode is all about looking to the past and moving forward in the future. We first find Courtney out on a date with Amber, the labor attorney who had been representing the union in the labor dispute in the previous episode. They seem to be hitting it off and Courtney is pretty thrilled. He does, however, show off a video from high school when he “prom”-posed to the girl of his dreams back then: Danielle. It involved a whole song and rap number which was cheesy but totally fits Courtney’s personality and what he would have been like as a teenager.

As Mayor, Courtney is going to be shooting a PSA commercial and attending a benefit gala for a local hospital (and its 70th anniversary). He invites Amber to the event against Valentina’s advice and then things take a turn. When Courtney goes to the news studio to film the PSA (which we never see) who should be there as a meteorologist but Danielle! She immediately recognizes Courtney and lets him in on the secret that she’s on the board of the gala and that she can’t wait to see him there. She also promises free drink tickets. Courtney is now a little torn because he really likes Amber but Danielle’s return fulfills a dream for his younger self. So he lets Jermaine and T.K. talk him into uninviting Amber and just focusing on hanging out with Danielle at the gala. And boy does he hang out with her. They dance and talk and drink all night. But then the next morning, his picture (with her) is all over the newspapers and it’s not such a great story, seeing people probably knew he was seeing Amber before.

While Courtney goes on another date with Danielle, Val ends up opening up to T.K. and Jermaine about her private life a little. She admits that she was married once but that they grew apart and ended up divorced. She doesn’t like to talk about it because her parents were divorced and she was embarrassed that she followed in their romance footsteps. It’s nice that we are finding out little bits of information about her that humanize her a bit but I’m still not in love with her character. I understand she needs to balance out the goofiness of the guys but I could do with a lot less of her most of the time to be honest. Courtney’s date with Danielle doesn’t go well at all. She’s snapping selfies and tweeting them out before the date is even over. She’s clearly just in it for the fame and the “like” factor. She can’t wait to get out of Fort Grey and move on with her life. Courtney realizes his mistake and bails on the date, intent on trying to win Amber back. It’s kind of cheesy and sweet that he recreates the little rap video but this time in suits instead of hip hop clothes. Amber’s not entirely buying it but she seems willing to give him one more chance. Besides, they are much more compatible. They even subscribe to the same silly news outlet. I think he probably has a long way to go and Val’s words of caution about dating as the Mayor being a different situation than just normal dating should be heeded. But, I think Courtney realizes that Val occasionally knows what she’s talking about and he’ll make note of it.

As Courtney goes through his romance woes, Dina has her own challenges to deal with. We see the gang in church and the pastor approaches Dina afterwards and begs her to join the choir. This is apparently not a new occurrence. He’s been trying to get her to sing for years but she always says she is too busy with raising Courtney. But now her boy is a grown man and she should let herself have this for herself. Dina reluctantly agrees to join the choir but then bails on every single practice that comes up. First, she’s in her mail truck eating a sandwich and lies to the pastor and says she’s at an animal shelter volunteering. Well, she does feed the sandwich to a noise dog off screen. Then she’s at home and he shows up with a portable keyboard and stand and starts riffing on the keys (on organ setting no less0 but she’s just ignoring him. When one of the neighbors complains about the noise, she turns off the sound and we get some real talk. The pastor rightly surmises that Dina is afraid to do something for herself after spending so much of her life worrying about and taking care of Courtney. She doesn’t entirely know who to be if she’s not Courtney’s mom. But singing is a passion for her and she should be allowed to embrace that passion. So, she finally really agrees to sing in church and boy does she sing. It’s always fun to see shows that have multi-talented cast members and you let them shine. I also have to admit I enjoyed the scene because we got to see the fun of an African America church service. Yes, some of the stuff is kind of over the top but the way they get into the music just makes me smile and it affirms to me that Courtney probably grew up there listening to people sing and make music and that helped to inspire his love of rap music (I know rap and gospel don’t always go together but it could have happened).

This wasn’t a typical episode of the Mayor s there wasn’t really a crisis for Courtney to solve but I still enjoyed it. In fact, I know I’ve complained about the show being a little formulaic but I think it’s starting to move away from that and I’m grateful. It was nice that Courtney was able to kind of figure things out for the most part on his own this week. It shows that he’s growing as a person.

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