Queen Sugar Season 3 Episode 1 Review: A Rock, A River, A Tree

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"It'll be a slaughter they never come back from."

That was the promise Charley Bordelon made on the Queen Sugar season 2 finale, and it appears she's keeping that promise on Queen Sugar Season 3 Episode 1.

In the Bleecher - Queen Sugar

Charley's playing a long game here. She's looking several steps ahead and honing her strategy, and best of all, keeping it quiet.

The only other person that knows of her plans is Ralph Angel.

Sam Landry, he opened the door to his house and let me come right in. So now, with my 1%, I'm going to make myself just as comfortable as can be. Open access to all of his corporate records, financials. I'm going to dig up every square inch of dirt and take down every shareholder on that board. I'll burn the entire Landry family to the god damned ground, and when I own Landry Enterprises, we'll finally bring power to the people, Ra, where it belongs.


I know that this will probably take all season and that there will be obstacles along the way, but if Charley can really take down the entire Landry empire, it will be worth the wait. 

Sam Landry is such a blatantly racist, power hungry, crook, and Jacob is nothing more than a privileged sleaze. It's easy to root for Charley to take them down. 

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But Charley had other important things on her plate. It appears she's hired a private investigator to track down the police officer who stuck a gun in her son's mouth. 

I was so proud of Charley for keeping her cool as she noticed Officer Orson at the basketball game. I can only imagine how much self-control it took to smile and make small talk with a man I'm sure she'd like to eviscerate with her bare hands. 

The most powerful enemy is the one you never see coming. For Officer Orson, that's Charley Bordelon. 

The saddest and most hopeful part of that short interaction was the meeting between Blue and Orson's grandson. Children aren't born to hate. That boy didn't see Blue's skin color, all he saw was a cool shirt. The world would be a much better place if that never changed. 

Nova had new challenges to handle as she was offered a six-figure book deal and a global tour. 

Most people would jump at such a chance, but not Nova. Her grassroots work means so much to her. It gives her the opportunity to look people in the eye and either listen to them or challenge their beliefs. 

I thought Charley's advice made a lot of sense in this Queen Sugar quote:

Don't lead with the fear of what might be. Lead with the strength of who you are.


This deal might take Nova away from Louisiana, but that doesn't mean she can't come back. Will success mean she has to lose her grassroots influence? 

Related: Queen Sugar Season 3 Trailer: The Bordelons Are Back

If anyone can figure out how to make it all work, it's Nova Bordelon. 

Fist In the Air - Queen Sugar

The St. Josephine basketball game was a microcosm of our society right now.

A white girl sang the national anthem. Black students took a knee, while security physically hauled them away, and old white men raised the Confederate flag in the stands. 

One side saw the kneeling as an insult to a great symbol of America, while the other saw it as an opportunity to keep society from turning a blind eye to the brutality that some Americans are under threat of every day. 

If no one is willing even to consider that other's point of view, we're left with a stalemate of angry voices trying to drown one another out. 

I'm guessing that this issue won't only affect Nova, but Micah as well. The way he told KeKe that kids at his private school would never protest like the kids at St. Josephine, made me wonder what changes Micah might make to change that.

Aunt Vi and Blue - Queen Sugar

Hollywood and Aunt Vi returned from a trip to Italy with big plans for an Italian themed wedding, and with Hollywood acting more protective of Vi than we've ever seen before. 

It left me wondering if something had happened on that trip to make Hollywood think the Lupus has made Vi more fragile and in need of protection, but Violet didn't feel that way.

Hollywood: I'm gonna always lift you up, and I'm gonna always protect you. That's what I do.
Violet: I know, baby, but you've got to understand that I don't need no pedestal. I ain't gonna break. I've got wings just like you.

Finally, we get to Ralph Angel. 

Blue has been acting out at school and at home, which is understandable. He's a little boy who misses his mother.

One day mommy and daddy were supposed to get married, and they were going to be a family, and the next mommy's gone, and video chats aren't the same as being there.

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Later, at the clinic, it felt as though that plain manilla folder held the power to change Ralph Angel's life, and in some ways it did. 

Not being Blue's biological father changes nothing, except it's breaking his heart. 

Waiting For Results - Queen Sugar

Ralph Angel dealt with it by calling Tamika, the girl looking to be his bed warmer. She didn't even get to reach those high aspirations as he took her to the barn instead. 

So tell me TV Fanatics, what did you think of the Queen Sugar Season 3 premiere. Check back in for my review of tomorrow night's Queen Sugar Season 3 Episode 2

And if you need more of the Bordelons, you can watch Queen Sugar online here at TV Fanatic.

A Rock, A River, A Tree Review

Editor Rating: 4.5 / 5.0
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Rating: 5.0 / 5.0 (3 Votes)

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.

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Queen Sugar Season 3 Episode 1 Quotes

Having you as the continuing face of Queen Sugar, well, it helps us keep up appearances, if you know what I mean?

Sam Landry

Don't lead with the fear of what might be. Lead with the strength of who you are.