Tonight’s episode of Atlanta was really focused on finesse. No, not the first definition of the word, but the second. To trick someone into giving up something and/or doing something. There was also a bit of focus on discrimination and how hip-hop is viewed by the [white] suburban parent. Bare with me as we go on a walk through episode 3 of Atlanta’s second season titled ‘Money Bag Shawty.’
The episode starts with a mock of a viral video. The backstory of tonight’s opening scene is an upset mother ranting about a Vince Staples video. She was upset about the lyrics to Staples‘ song ‘North North’, She even goes on to read the lyrics word for word in the video. It made waves of controversy and gave a boost to Vince. In the new episode of Atlanta, it’s a [white] mother ranting about Paperboi’s lyrics. It’s almost a carbon copy of the ‘North North’ video. The video is hilarious, and we all have to appreciate Stephen and Donald Glover for making that happen. It truly shows how much these parents want censorship. The crazy thing is, they originally heard the censored versions of each song. Hip-hop has always frowned upon for the lyrics in the music. The beginning of the episode pushed that to the forefront to put it in the spotlight.
We get a glimpse of Paperboi, Darrius, and Earn at a bar. In this scene, we get another glimpse of reality, the up and coming rapper. Paperboi has made it as a rapper. He has a single that has gone gold, and he is waiting for his check from streaming. He’s approached by a waiter that’s been giving them free drinks. The waiter explodes and goes on a bit of a rant about how Paperboi should help him because he’s made it. People will do this to you if you make music. Random people, relatives, family friends, anybody will do this to you. They will act like you think you’re too good for them since you have money. People from the same areas, hood, city, will act like you’re the problem. The situations are sad. People will also harass celebrities in public when they are just trying to enjoy free time. We’ve seen and heard of these situations so many times. This is the life of a rapper though.
We get to see Clark County again in this episode. Clark shows us what a “fake rapper” looks like. He doesn’t drink, smoke, or fight. He raps about these things though. He raps about a life he doesn’t live. Paperboi and Darrius offer him weed and Hennessey, but he denies the offer. He also has his “goons” with him in the studio. They are the people that live that life. Clark is one of those people that has other people do his dirty work so that he doesn’t get a bad reputation. He also talks to Paperboi about how his manager helps him get sponsorships and features on soundtrack albums. Basically, Earn needs to step his game up.
Later on in the episode, Earn gets the streaming check. We also finally get to see Van after two episodes. Van and Earn are on good terms still, and Earn is handling his family well. Earn takes Van on a date, and they are discriminated against. Earn takes Van to the movies. Remember, he just got paid so he has a lot of money/cash on him. When he attempts to pay with a large bill, they deny him. When he attempts to use his debit card, they basically want to make sure he didn’t steal the card. Earn almost explodes, but Van keeps him calm. Then, they go to a hookah bar and Earn gets the short end of the stick again. He uses another big bill and gets told it’s fake by the owner. The security knows that it’s real, but there’s nothing they can do about it. Earn got finessed by the owner, because he still made him pay. He leaves and goes to see Al (Paperboi).
Earn and Van pickup Al, Darrius, and Tracy. They’re in a limo, and they’re stunting on everybody. They end up at the strip club to celebrate Paperboi’s Gold single, and the money they just earned. This is where the finesse comes full circle. A strip club is a place where plenty of people get finessed. Strippers get finessed by guys lying about what they do for a living. Men get finessed by strippers who give the illusion they are going to leave with them. The finesse in the strip club really depends on who’s the most gullible person of the two people in the situation. Earn gets put on blast at the strip club by the DJ for not tipping a stripper (yes, it happens a lot when people don’t tip). A strip club is a dangerous place for people who spend money they don’t have. Overall, it seemed as though they enjoyed themselves. As Earn and Van leave the strip club though, they run into Micheal Vick. Yes, ex-Atlanta Falcons quarterback, Mike Vick. He’s been at the club racing people, he’s ten races in when they see him. Earn decides to run against Vick which turns out to be a really big mistake. Earn is pissed, but you should never race Micheal Vick.
All in all, this episode was hilarious. They touched on a lot of things that happen to rappers studio wise. They also focused a little on how managers hustle for their artist. The finesse situations also added to the comedy, it was necessary to add these elements for comedic reasons. I loved it and I hoped you guys did as well.
Rating – 9.5/10
What did you think of the episode? Did you enjoy it? Tweet us your thoughts @SuperBroMovies! Thank you for reading!
Atlanta Starring Donald Glover, Keith Stanfield, Bryan Tyree Henry, and Zazie Beets:
Atlanta is one of the top cities for young rappers looking to make a name for themselves in the business. Among those up-and-comers is Alfred Miles, a hot new artist who is trying to understand the line between real life and street life. He is managed by his cousin, Earn, who gets caught up in the local rap scene and his cousin’s career after returning home to the ATL. Earn does whatever he can to try to get Alfred’s career to the next level. Darius, the rapper’s right-hand man and visionary, is also in Alfred’s entourage. When Earn isn’t busy managing his cousin’s career, he spends much of his time with best friend Vanessa, who is also the mother of his daughter.