Black Jesus Episode Recap, 02×09: “Janky Cable”

“All right, so check it out. What we do — we got two separate but equal viewing areas. Over here, this is the Jackson side of the fight. And for all you Asiatic Filipino mothafuckas, this is the Santos side right here. Now if you’re black and Filipino mixed, your row-side selection will be chosen based off the straightness of your hair”

Hey, everyone. RobBarracuda here, and it’s time to talk about this week’s episode of Black Jesus, “Janky Cable”. The gang’s excited as hell for the biggest pay-per-view match of the century. …hopefully it turned out better than that Mayweather vs. Pacquiao fight. Fight of the century, my pasty white ass.


 

 

The gang (including Fish, finally) is hanging around the taco truck, taking care of some business as Boonie and Fish try to get them a hook-up so they can watch the highly anticipated Jackson vs. Santos pay-per-view fight. They can’t watch at Ms. Tudi’s house because she’s hosting a Filipino-themed event, and Fish is too broke to afford cable. Jesus calls them all in to pray to God, hoping He will bless them with a method to watch the fight.

Meanwhile, Vic’s getting things set up for a fight viewing party in his apartment, bringing out some classy suits for him and Lloyd to wear. Lloyd wants to have some friends over, but Vic denies this because his friends are smelly and homeless. His guest list is already full, perfectly calculated at 14 (included the two of them) when factoring in the booze, apartment space, and that there’s only one bathroom. While this is happening, the gang’s hanging around in Fish’s apartment still trying to think of a way they can watch the fight, when Jesus and Jason suggest going to Trayvon’s dad who specializes in hooking people up with free cable. Trayvon mentions that it’s a bad idea given that his dad and Vic got into some deep shit with each other a couple of years ago over “the rebate thing”. As Fish explains, Vic has a system worked out that forces everyone in the apartment to sign up for cable through his account so that he would receive a bunch of rebates and barely have to pay anything himself. However on one occasion, Trayvon’s dad hooked up someone in the apartment with cable, and they ended up cancelling their account, forcing Vic to pay extra on his own cable bill. Vic is still royally pissed about this, but Fish doesn’t care how he feels (leading to my favorite line in the episode, “Man, fuck Vic and his big-ass piano teeth”). Even Jesus agrees that Trayvon should call his dad, evidently since his Holiness looks down on monopolistic cable corporations. Trayvon’s pretty reluctant about this, but the gang eventually browbeats him into doing it.

Later that night, a delivery man shows up at the complex with a package for Lloyd: a bottle of J. Darby and a letter from the “booze fairy” to drink some and go for a walk.

Lloyd... Lloyd... come on. Booze Fairy? You can't be that dumb.
Lloyd… Lloyd… come on. Booze Fairy? You can’t be that dumb.

As he leaves his post, a truck drives up to the apartment complex, and Jesus, Fish, Trayvon, and Trayvon’s dad (referred to as Big Tray; he’s played by Mark Curry, the star of Hanging With Mr. Cooper and a former host of It’s Showtime At The Apollo) all sneak up to the roof of the complex. He successfully hooks them up with the fight through the cable system, as well as a deluxe channel package, HBO, and even some pornography. Fish promises he’ll hook him up with some more business, but Trayvon’s in a hurry to get them out of the complex so Vic doesn’t notice anything.

In the morning, the gang test out the cable hook-up they got, and it works as promised. Fish and Jesus both want Trayvon to go down to the store and get some snacks for the fight later, but Trayvon is pretty stubborn about this. Boonie suggests that since they have a free cable hook-up, they can host their own fight viewing party and charge people in the neighborhood to come and watch. Jason points out that Vic’s likely to shut it down if they host the party in the apartment, but Fish says that they could host the party outside in an area that’s just outside of the complex property, where Vic has no jurisdiction. Fish leaves the apartment, and Vic is standing right outside the door, interrogating him about the presence of Big Tray on the complex. As he continues to grill him about his cable situation, Big Tray walks out of one of the apartments and gets Vic’s attention. He starts getting pissed at him for messing with his referral rebates, and Big Tray points out that he really needs to relax and stop being a bully. Vic gets even more annoyed and starts trying to get Big Tray into a fight with him. The gang is of course rooting for Big Tray to kick his ass, but Trayvon is worried about what the outcome will be.

Poor Trayvon.
Poor Trayvon.

As a fight’s about to break out, Big Tray pulls out a couple of tasers and ends up shocking Vic, launching him back a bit and falling on the ground. He struggles to get up, and Big Tray uses this as an opportunity to safely leave the complex, but not before Vic vows that’s banned for all of eternity.

Later, the gang sets up the TV in the location they had talked about earlier, and Trayvon lets them know they got about 50 people (and about $600) coming their way that night. However, the cable suddenly goes out, as we see Vic severed the connection to stop them from watching the fight.Vic cuts cable Back in the apartment, the gang tries to figure out what to do about their current situation, and Jesus suggests that Trayvon go up to the roof and fix the connection themselves since he helped Big Tray do it a couple of times before. As usual, Trayvon’s extremely reluctant to do so, but Jesus and Fish just continuously brow-beat him until he eventually gives in.

The big night is finally here, and a pretty nice crowd shows up to the gang’s viewing party. They’re collecting money and serving food and drinks for the occasion. Trayvon and Jesus are up on the roof trying to rewire the cable connection, but Trayvon ends up getting shocked and launched off into a pile of garbage.

TRAYVON NOOOOO!!!!
TRAYVON NOOOOO!!!!

Everyone immediately rushes to Trayvon’s aide, immediately suspecting that he might be dead, but a miracle comes through and brings him back to life. His effort was not in vain, as the fight party is back on thanks to the cable hook-up. Meanwhile there’s the viewing party in Vic’s apartment, and Vic decides to go out for a bit while everyone’s enjoying the fight, stumbling upon the viewing party that the gang’s hosting. Furious, he decides to go up to the roof and shut off the janky cable connection. Jesus tries to stop him, but Vic isn’t having any of it, explaining that rules need to be enforced and stealing is wrong. Jesus understands this, but he responds by complaining about the terrible pricing and shitty customer service that comes as a result of cable monopolies (seriously, Jesus got no chill when it comes to Comcast, man), but Vic once again tries to persuade him that what he’s doing is wrong by saying he’s essentially stealing money from the fighters and their families by not paying for cable. While this is happening, Trayvon meets up with the others and is furious that he nearly died and that everyone’s acting fairly casual about it. Vic ends up getting shocked exactly like Trayvon did and knocks out the cable for the party, getting everyone’s attention… as Fish realizes that Vic’s got the fight playing in his apartment, and everyone rushes there. Trayvon and Jesus stay behind, however, to make sure that Vic is actually okay, and thankfully he recovers from the incident.

The next morning, the gang’s going over the money they made off the fight party, which comes out to $720. Jesus, remembering what he heard from Vic the other night, says that they have to give some of the money back to Jackson and Santos in order to make things right. He plans to make a run to the store to get some stuff, and he asks Trayvon if he wants anything, much to his surprise. Overjoyed at the prospect of Jesus buying stuff for him, he starts requesting various items like paper towels, avocados, and mentos, and the episode ends with Jesus heading out and Trayvon riding the mental high of what just happened.


My Thoughts

Obviously, this was a very Trayvon-heavy episode, and I feel really bad for him this week. It’s kind of been a running thing in the show (especially this season) that his generally good nature is always being taken advantage of by all of his friends, but this one goes really far and pushes it right to the forefront. Even Jesus is joining everyone in pushing Trayvon around to do this or that thing for them, completely oblivious to his own concerns or feelings. While Jesus can often seem a bit sketchy in his behavior with his followers, this episode just makes him come across as a straight-up douche, pushing around someone who clearly does not want to be doing the questionable things he’s asked to do. Even when he pretty much dies, everyone just shrugs it off and doesn’t seem to give a shit. It’s actually kind of tough to watch on some level, especially since he’s normally the most decent and upright character out of the main cast. At this point, I kind of have to wonder why he bothers hanging out with these guys all the time. Apart from all the Trayvon moments, there’s also the funny moments of Jesus talking shit about cable companies, spitting some mad truth about those monopolies. They do not have the blessing of our Lord and Savior, so stop cheating your customers to receive the blessing of his Holiness. A funny episode with some good character work throughout, and I look forward to next week. We got two more weeks until the season finale, and it looks like Lloyd’s ex-wife is going to be back soon to cause more drama for Lloyd and Vic.

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