“R&B Divas: Atlanta” recap (3.1): Enragement Party

Praise jujubes, our ATL divas are back! The ladies are hotter than ever, and the shade is even shadier. Let’s begin with a quick update on our Season Three cast. First off, Faith Evans and Nicci Gilbert are out. We already knew about Faith, and honestly, we hadn’t seen her much since the very first episodes of Season One anyway. But I’ll never stop missing her. She was the warm but level and professional mamma that started it all, and I still wish she could pop in every now and then. But like life, sometimes people move on and you just can’t get them back.

But getting rid of Nicci’s ridiculous drama? Sounds just fine by me. Even though she’s still behind the scenes as an executive producer, when it comes to the actual show, girl, bye.

What they don’t spend time acknowledging in this episode, however, is the quiet disappearance of Latasha Scott, the sweet diva who was brought in last season. Maybe the drama was too much for her and with too little payoff, considering that three seasons in, there’s still no tour or any other major artistic accomplishments as a group to really stand by. (The one exception is the original, mainly-Faith-penned R&B Divas album, which seems like it will reemerge as a plot point later in this season.) Still, I thought her quiet demeanor was a nice addition to the divas, and it’s too bad that she’s gone.

To fill those diva shoes, though, we have two new ladies in the house this season. One is LaTavia Roberson, former member of Destiny’s Child. While she left the group in 2000, she’s quick to mention the two Grammys that she holds from her time with them. She also maintains that “my beef was was always with management, not Beyonce.”

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The other new ATL diva is Meelah Williams, former lead singer of the ‘90s girl group 702, whose most famous song was the fantastic “Where My Girls At.” From the front to back, is you feelin’ that?

We first meet LaTavia and Meelah at a “Gratitude Tea” which is organized by Angie Stone, obviously, as no one else would organize something called a “Gratitude Tea.” Well, except maybe for Monifah, but Monifah has a slightly difference face in this first episode of the third season. It’s been at least six months since any of the divas have seen each other at Keke’s disastrous birthday party that ended out last season, and apparently they haven’t been all that chummy in the time since.

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While Monifah has frequently been the peacemaker in the past, it appears that in the six months since that party, and also since getting engaged to Terez, she’s turned heavily inwards, focusing on cleansing her life and body of all negative influences. This includes becoming vegan, which completes the circle of True Lesbianism. It also includes distancing herself from negative people in her life. And one of those people turns out to be Keke Wyatt.

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