“R&B Divas” recap (Ep. 5): “The MILFs.”


This week’s R&B Divas was a true hodgepodge of events, some exciting, some not so much. I’ll run through all of them quickly, but the biggest announcement was that Monifah and Terez are going to have a baby! Ba-by! Ba-by! Oh, and this episode also involves a WNBA game. Basically, this is turning out to be the most surprisingly gay show ever.

We first hear about the beautiful lesbian baby plans as Monifah and Faith share a fancy dinner while watching the Atlanta traffic fly by. Really, this episode consisted of a lot of different people eating out at a lot of different restaurants and moral of the story is I’m hungry.

So Monifah wanting a baby isn’t actually news; she’s hinted at how much her ovaries are kicking her in the gut ever since the very first episode. There’s been some type of baby pangs almost every episode since. But this was the first time that it was brought up in the way of, this is who’s to carry what and this is whose eggs are going into who, and so forth. As in, whoa, Terez and Mo are for real with this.

While I am pumping my fist in the air, however, Faith is reserving some caution. Later, it turns out Nicci is, too. She even takes Monifah to a park to have “a talk” about it, which seems a little out of line to me at first, but it actually does seem to be helpful to Mo. Before you worry, the concern doesn’t have anything to do with her or Terez or the plan to have a baby in general; as always, the divas are more than supportive. Because the divas are the best.

The concern comes from Monifah wanting to have a baby at the same time that she’s planning on kickstarting her career for the first time in 13 years. The divas just don’t want it all to be too much. And turns out they’re right. Monifah sometimes reminds me of an excitable puppy, which I mean in the best of ways. She’s at such a good place right now, both personally and professionally, and she just wants it all! Who doesn’t! I, too, am an excitable puppy! But sometimes having it all just isn’t feasible.

Monifah Skypes with Terez about it, and they seem to come to a consensus that while it’ll all work out, right now it seems like Mo’s career is going to come first. So, maybe no ba-by, ba-by! for now. Sad face. But it’s gonna happen! My lesbian bones feel it! They end the conversation with an “I love you,” “I love you back” exchange which, while simple, seems particularly adorable.

There’s also an awkward moment where Keke tries to convince Monifah that her gay brother should be the sperm donor, to which Monifah kindly but firmly shuts her down. They want an anonymous donor so there’s never any confusion about custody or who the parents are. Damn straight. But Keke’s reasoning seems to go, my gay brother wants a baby, you gay ladies want to have a baby, you can have one super gay baby! With three parents! Hip hip hooray! Oh, Keke. Have you watched Queer as Folk? Three parents can be a tricky art to master. I know your heart’s in the right place, but no.

Speaking of Keke, the other momentous occasion of the episode occurs when Keke shows up to a dinner with the divas by herself! Sans Michael! Sans babies! Just Keke! The happiness and pride for this big step is evident on everyone’s faces, including Keke’s. It’s like that wonderfully fun sass we’ve seen Keke possesses has just been heightened ten degrees, and she’s letting it all out in an even more buoyant, natural, and free way. It is legitimately joyous.

Other less exciting events: Nicci meets with Big Jim to try to smooth things out between them, which is a classy move on both their parts. It seems to work a little.

Nicci also meets with her mom over yet another delicious looking meal — there are always so many gorgeous beverages! — to tell her she wants to sing a duet with her on the compilation album.

At first I think this is another cop-out for Nicci, another way to hide from singing herself. But then I start to see it another way: if having her mom there helps her find the inspiration to sing again, then praise be it. Nicci’s mom apparently used to be a jazz singer herself, who gave up a potentially huge career to take care of her children. They later have a little session at Big Jim’s studio, and it’s clear it means a lot to Nicci. It’s nice to see her actually happy about something for once.

Syleena is going through a variety of things this episode, including meeting with and then firing one of her managers, and moving from her house. This last part is entertaining because it happens to be pouring during the moving process, so we get to see her running around screaming in a sparkly shower cap, and you can’t beat that.

She also has some drama with photo shoots. One was unprofessional to the max, resulting in her walking out–a walking out I actually agreed with. A diva must have respect for herself. The other involved both of her sisters being present and bickering in the impressively constant way only sisters who really love each other can bicker. We also learn that Syleena’s one sister who’s also her manager is named Syleecia. Syleena and Syleecia. That is amazing! I love this family!

The results of the second photo shoot, which is for an album cover, do go smashingly, though, even with the overly energetic sisters. Lady’s looking fierce.

Syleena and Syleecia also have some big news for the divas: Syleecia has booked them all a spot to sing “God Bless America” at an Atlanta Braves game. While this seems like a pretty good gig, Nicci says she’s still not prepared to perform, and Faith will be out of town. Monifah has a mini tantrum where she expresses the desire that all five of them should be doing all these things together and people need to stop wimping out and/or flying to L.A. I agree with her in a selfish way, because I want to see all five of them together, too! But alas, Nicci and Faith are out, and it’s left to the dynamic trio of Syleena, Monifah, and Keke.

As they’re rehearsing “God Bless America,” they get a call reporting that the Braves game has been cancelled. Keke inwardly cheers, as she wasn’t that pumped in the first place. The game won’t be rescheduled, but there’s another solution: Syleecia then books them to sing “The Star-Spangled Banner” at a WNBA game, instead.

The girls all seem more comfortable with both the song and the setting. Monifah’s particularly excited because she “loves basketball.” Also, she is a lesbian.

They rehearse a little giddily in a bathroom before their performance. They’ve named themselves the MILFs, because, you know. Keke says that they have no idea what they’re doing. But this obviously turns out to be false, as when they take to the court, they ace it, in my opinion, soloing on different parts, coming together in harmony at the end, a cool and soulful performance. The only sad thing is that it seems like the arena is almost entirely empty. Where our WNBA fans at, Atlanta? Still, it was exciting to see at least part of our diva ensemble performing together in a public setting for the first time.

The preview for next week’s episode, in contrast to the relative even-keeled-ness of things this week, consisted of tears, yelling, and more tears. And maybe some more yelling. There seems to be a lot of Keke drama happening, and a lot of family drama happening with Syleena and her dad. The term “Ike and Tina type of relationship” is used. Uh oh. It is clear I will need to prepare myself in advance for this emotional onslaught.

What did you think of the MILFs’ performance? Most importantly, do you want Mo and Terez to have a boy or a girl and what should they name it and how much style is that baby going to have, I mean right?

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