Coming into season 2 of ‘Power Book III: Raising Kanan,’ we already knew that things would get testy for Raquel (Patina Miller) and the Thomas family. In Episode 3, we might’ve gotten our first real glance at what that looks like.
‘Sleeping Dogs’ begins with Unique (Joey Bada$$) making a move. He holds Juliana (Rosal Colon) at gunpoint before eventually kidnapping her and taking all of the money Raq has stashed in her store. Raq’s brain is elsewhere though, as she has her sights set on expanding their business to New Jersey. Marvin (London Brown) suggests that they learn the players in Jersey before they make such a huge step but Raq has her mind made up. With her plate already full, the last thing she needed was another problem. As he’s leaving the house, Kanan (Mekai Curtis) is approached by Detective Howard (Omar Epps) yet again. We finally get the conversation we’ve been waiting for. Howard reveals to Kanan that he’s his father. As expected, Kanan is utterly shocked and in disbelief.
Those feelings only get deeper when Famous (Antonio Ortiz) informs him that Scrappy is dead. Kanan can’t get his head around the idea that Scrappy would commit suicide. He didn’t have time to dwell on the news though. In order for Famous to make some money, Kanan decides to help him sell his mixtapes again, but this time in a different way. Kanan goes to his mother’s headquarters and steals some drugs that him and Famous end up selling on the corner. While Kanan was sneakily taking drugs, Raq was trying to figure out who took all of her money. She arrived at the bodega and was surprised to see that the door was locked and the store closed. Raq uses her own key to get in. Once she’s in, she notices that the register is open and the security camera footage had been taken. This urges her to rush to the room where all their money was stashed, only to find out that they had been robbed. Raq calls her brothers to hip them to the situation. Lou Lou (Malcolm Mays) doesn’t answer because he’s in the studio so Raq goes there to talk business. After she leaves, she links with Worrell (John Clay III) to see what intel he has. At the moment, he didn’t have any and also didn’t think that Unique would be dumb enough to mess with them despite his current circumstances. Regardless of what he had to say, Raq urged Worrell to search for Unique like his life depended on it.
Oblivious to everything that was going on with the business, Kanan and Jukebox (Hailey Kilgore) sit at home and discuss what Howard told Kanan earlier in the day. They both believe Howard is crazy. Juke still believes that Howard doesn’t remember anything about the night of the shooting since he didn’t bring it up in their conversation. Kanan reluctantly tells Raq about their interaction, including Howard telling him that he’s his father. Raq tells Kanan that Howard is delusional and that he doesn’t know what’s real and what isn’t. She also says part of the reason she had him shoot him was because of his unstablenesses and unpredictability. Kanan then brings up Scrappy and his alleged suicide. Raq continues to compound lies by making it seem as if Scrappy was troubled and he made his own decision. Although Kanan didn’t seem convinced, he didn’t ask anymore questions.
Before we get to the very end of the episode, we have to mention some of the other notable events that took place during this episode. Detective Burke (Shanley Caswell) continues her deep dive on Detective Howard. This week we’re introduced to her father and ex-lover. She shares her concerns about Howard with them. Although they tell her that everyone has secrets, she continues her pursuit and is even shown camping outside of her partner’s house. Marvin seems to be learning some useful techniques in his anger management class. This is evident when he uses a breathing exercise he learned in the class instead of just reacting recklessly when he’s approached by a tenant in a wheelchair who invades his personal space and speaks disrespectfully to him. For the first time, we see Renee (Krystal Joy Brown), his anger management class teacher, flirt with him. Her and the class are already making a difference on Marvin. While sitting in the car with Lou Lou listening to Juke’s new song, he voices his regrets for messing things up with his daughter.
Speaking of Juke, she finally met her mother. Well, not really. She continued to follow her mother this week and ended up in a church where she caught a glimpse of her mother showing off her vocals. When Kenya (Letoya Luckett) locked eyes with Juke and realized who it was, Juke freaked out and ran away. It definitely had to have been a surreal moment for her. That wasn’t the only thing she dealt with this episode. After recording a beautiful new song that was obviously about Nicole, Juke had to hear complaints about how she looked. Crown Camacho (Quincy Brown) loved her sound but emphasized that audiences wanted to see her look the part also. Although, not with the same harsh tone, Lou echoed the sentiments. Juke was adamant about not changing how she looks. Could this lead to her not making it to where she wants? Could Lou and Crown end up giving her song to Zisa (Paulina Singer)? Only time will tell. Another thing time will tell is how the relationship between Crown and Lou will play out. While Raq was in the studio discussing business with Lou, Crown was outside the door eavesdropping. He later pulled up to Raq’s house with a proposal. He offered to sell Raq a percentage of the label for little to nothing so that she could wash all of her money through it. In exchange, she would have to keep Lou out of the music business.
Before Raq could give him a straight answer, she received a phone call. We then see Raq, Marvin and Lou Lou surrounded Worrell. Unique reached out to Worrell and said he wanted to talk. Contrary to what Lou and Marvin thought, Juliana wasn’t the one who took their money. It was exactly what Raq thought all along. As he held a gun to Juliana, Unique explained the method behind his madness. He admitted to losing the war. He spoke about how his name had lost weight in the streets and he was retired. Despite how stacked the odds were against him, he wanted to show Raq that he could still touch her if he wanted to. Instead, all he asked was for the safety of him and his family. After considering her options, Raq chooses to accept Unique’s truce. For how long though? That’s one of the questions we’re all going to be waiting to see get answered for the rest of the season.
The very last scene of the episode gave Kanan an answer to a question he had been trying to figure out for the life of him. Detective Howard popped up out of nowhere again, this time when Kanan was returning home and not leaving. He asked Kanan what Raq said after he told her that they had spoke. He surprised Kanan by basically saying exactly what Raq said. He then took the surprise to a whole different level when he fessed up and told Kanan that he remembers everything…YES, EVERYTHING. He left Kanan shook when he flat out told him that he knows that he shot him. He went on to assure Kanan that he wouldn’t tell anyone about the incident because he wouldn’t do that to his flesh and blood. The look on Kanan’s face said it all.
MANNNNN. Episode 3 set up the rest of the season to be must-see TV. Now that Detective Howard has laid the truth on the table, will Kanan believe him? How will he react to finding out that Raq has been lying to him this whole time? Will Raq be able to expand peacefully? Will she be taking Crown up on his deal? Can Crown actually get Famous a place to stay? How will Lou balance his music and his business lives competently? Is Marvin really becoming a better person? When will him and Juke have a meaningful conversation? Can Juke muster up the courage to actually speak to her mother? What’s Unique real plan? Is Worrell trustworthy?
There is so much to unpack. Let us know what you thought about this episode and give us your predictions for the next one in the comments!
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