Folks, in the words of Barry Manilow, looks like we made it! It’s the last episode of Basketball Wives: L.A. Just a few thoughts. I found this series to be much more entertaining than its counterpart set in Miami. There are actual wives on this show.
Although there are only two, and one of them is clinically insane, at least they are actually married to basketball players as opposed to the entire cast of ex-girlfriends and ex-wives in Miami.
Also, there’s less violence in this installment. Other than the two-piece Malaysia delivered to Laura’s face in the first episode, Basketball Wives L.A. hasn’t had the violence normally associated with Vh1 reality shows and certainly not the level regularly displayed on the Miami version.
Finally, there’s Jackie Christie. Never before has there been such a wonderful combination of villainy, narcissism and just plain old crazy all wrapped up into one character. Jackie is a fishwife like no other. She is Gary Busey in a corset and crimped phonytail. The producers made an excellent choice in casting her. Waiting to see which one of her many personalities will emerge is the best part of watching. She’s the Magneto to Shaunie O’Neal’s Charles Xavier. And with that, let’s toast to the last episode of Basketball Wives: L.A.
Imani, Laura and Malaysia meet for lunch and apparently, Jackie is on the menu. “It’s not okay for you to stir [expletive] up like that,” Laura says about Jackie. “Jackie’s whole game plan was to isolate us from each other except her,” Imani says. Laura tells the other women that she spoke with an acquaintance of Jackie’s. “They were like, y’all don’t have a clue what y’all dealing with,’” she says.
Malaysia says that she personally spoke with Jackie. “So Jackie called me and I answered the phone,” she says. “She said she wanted to meet with everybody and say sorry.”
“I would never talk to her again in real life,” Laura says. I’m confused. As opposed to fake life? Has this all been one very disturbing version of the Sims that I’ve been watching? If so, can I get a new Laura?
Malaysia says that Jackie talked about being a cheerleader for her and the rest of the women. “Why would you want to conquer and divide us,” Malaysia says. “There’s a problem and there’s some medicine that’s not being took.” Lord have mercy.
You can’t teach old dogs new tricks,” Imani says. “And she’s a old dog,” Laura says. Someone call the pound and tell them to come get Laura. She’s insufferable.
Missing since the first and second episodes of the season, Kimsha World Peace makes an appearance at Jackie’s house. Kimsha says she’s been traveling between Indiana and New York dealing with family issues. I think she also traveled back to 1997 and picked up that Bebe logo top she’s wearing.
I haven’t seen those things since girls in D.C. used to pair them with those horrible Parasuco stretch jeans. I hope to never see either again. Jackie invites Kimsha into her kitchen and begins to update her on everything she’s missed.
“I don’t like people mad at me,” Jackie says. “Girls in this group are mad at me. There’s no just cause for it. Me and Imani started getting real close.” Jackie must’ve talked for hours, because the footage fades out and fast forwards several times.
“I don’t know what she told me,” Kimsha says. “It was just this one, that one. I’m not going to listen to what no one said. Y’all grown women.” Kimsha sounds like the voice of reason. I wish she and Tanya had been included on the show more.
“Evil is always going to lose,” Jackie says. “I don’t play those games.” Kimsha’s eyes begin to glaze over behind her Bobby Womack frames. “It was just like ‘huh, what,” she says in an interview. “I don’t got time for the drama.” “Yeah, I hope it all works out,” Kimsha says to Jackie.
The Govan sisters meet for lunch. Gloria and Matt have broken up. “In five years, I’ve been in five different states and five different teams,” Gloria says. “I feel like I’ve lost myself.”
I should note that Gloria is wearing dinner plates as earrings with what look like silhouettes of Eliza Doolittle painted on them. “Okay, stop,” Laura says. Are you overreacting? “Gloria says she isn’t. “I need space,” she says. “What do you mean space,” Laura asks. “I can’t do this with him in my face.” Gloria says.
I’m not sure what this is? Gloria doesn’t seem to do much of anything and anything she does has ties to Matt’s career. The fake basketball coach job, speaking at Matt’s camp, organizing Matt’s charity event, starring on Basketball Wives. She’d have none of that had it not been for her being the mother of Matt’s children.
“At least that [expletive] ain’t 42 and saying ‘yo you the one,” Laura says. Shut up Laura. “I explained to her that you can be number one and your children number two,” Laura says. “And then Matt holds the umbrella. You have to understand that.”
I actually feel sorry for Laura. Now that Gilbert Arenas has apparently allowed her back into his life, she’s giving her sister advice that is contrary to the advice she’d given her before. Her existence and happiness are seemingly dependent on a man who was brilliant enough to bring a gun into a locker room. That is really sad.
Imani, Laura and Malaysia go get custom shoes made. Is VH-1 comping this? Because how can Imani and Laura afford to have custom made anything? “Okay so guess what I’m doing,” Laura says excitedly. No one bothers to ask. “I’m going to Disney World, to stay,” she says. “Yay! I’m moving there.” “You’re moving where,” Imani asks. “I’m moving to Orlando,” Laura says. “I think it’s a very family orientated place. I want my children to be closer to their father.” I think she wants to be closer to her children’s father.
Following in her sister’s footsteps, Gloria visits a therapist. I’m not sure I believe this is really a therapist’s office. The lady has the weirdest skunk hair I’ve ever seen. It’s reddish brown with a large patch of platinum blonde in the front where the bangs should be. She must be a hired actress.
“I want to get to the core of what’s going on with me,” Gloria says. “Obviously, [Matt] has had his time to do whatever—grow, travel. You’re talking about five years, two kids and now you’re ready. So when he threw that bombshell on me, I was like ‘yeah I’m going to need some space.” I don’t believe her at all.
“What’s the status of your relationship,” Dr. Skunk Hair asks. “I need space to kind of figure things out on my own,” Gloria says. “I need to know what makes me happy.”
Jackie is at a photo shoot where some poor soul has to take pictures of the clothes from Jackie’s hideous fashion line. “Originally the girls were going to come,” Jackie says. “But due to the falling out, they couldn’t make it.” Doug is filling in as Jackie’s gopher on the set. He’s assisting with getting the models dressed and accessorized. “Swing the hair a little bit,” he tells one of the models. “Jackie looks at him with a menacing look. “Swing the hair?” she says. Doug looks frightened.
Oh man. One of the models is being forced to wear that God-awful Little House on the Prairie dress that Jackie had Draya model. “Seeing the clothes on the models, it just brought me back home again. “Get out of my face, hoochie,” she says to the model. Ha! Jackie is certifiably insane.
Kimsha arrives at the photo shoot in a new top that highlights all her Mary J. Blige bicep and boob tattoos. “I’m so excited she could stop by,” Jackie says. “I just adore Kimsha.” Kimsha couldn’t look any less bored. “So have you chatted with the girls,” Jackie asks.
Kimsha says she hasn’t talked to anyone. Instead of asking about Kimsha, Jackie talks about her favorite subject: Jackie. “I have a big heart,” she says. “We had so much fun together. I still can’t believe it. It’s like a bad dream. And they got so much they could learn from me. It’s very hurtful to me.” “Let go and let God ,” Kimsha says as she looks for an exit.
Gloria and Imani meet for lunch. “Did I tell you I’m moving out,” Gloria asks. I’m excited. I think it’s going to be good.” Imani says that Gloria is mature for her age. “I’m very private about my relationship,” Gloria says.
So much so, that she signed up for a show that broadcasts her relationship on national television. “I’m excited because I like found it on my own,” Gloria says. “Like even now, I’m paying for it on my own.” Obviously Gloria thinks this is something that regular people don’t do every day.
“I’m happy for you, Imani says. “Thanks Boo,” Gloria says. Gloria invites Imani to Laura’s birthday party and asks her to invite Draya and Malaysia. They both determine that Jackie is not invited. “At first you’re like ‘I don’t want to talk about her anymore,’” Gloria says. “But then it’s hard not to.” Of course it is. Jackie is the most entertaining person on the show.
Draya and Imani meet for lunch. Imani asks Draya what she’s been up to. “Waiting for my family to get out here,” Draya says.
Draya says that Jackie has been calling her frequently. “I’ve been getting blocked calls,” Draya says. “The only one that calls blocked is Jackie.” “That’s how Malaysia got caught,” Imani says.
“I really thought she was like cool and she was like running things,” Draya says. “She was the meanest to me and Malaysia.” Draya, all of them were mean to you and Malaysia.
Laura called Malaysia a rat and told you that you should own being a hooker. Imani called you worthless. Jackie had nothing to do with any of that. All of these women, save for Malaysia, ganged up on you and left you sobbing in a nightclub.
“Child we was looking at you like poor baby,” Imani says. No you weren’t. You treated her even worse than Jackie did. “Me and the girls are going to have to do something about Jackie,” Draya says. Sounds like the same thing the rest of the women said about you Draya. How quickly the tables turn.
Matt and Gloria pack up what I assume to be Gloria’s belongings. “Matt and I have decided to do this sort of trial separation,” Gloria says. “I’m going to get my own place, he’s going to get his place and I’m going to have the kids.” Gloria carries a roll of bubble wrap. “People are going to [expletive] celebrate this day,” she says. “Our so called perfect relationship is over,” Matt says. Gloria asks Matt for a washer and dryer. “That can be my ‘I still love you gift,’” she says.
Matt asks how many bedrooms are in Gloria’s new place. “Four,” Gloria says. Matt asks Gloria why she was upset at him for wanting a four-bedroom home. “I got mad at you for having a four bedroom because you’re not going to have the boys that much,” Gloria says.
That makes no sense. Matt can’t have a four bedroom house because he won’t be the primary custodial parent, but Gloria can? Isn’t this Matt’s money? Gloria is the most entitled unemployed person I’ve ever seen. She’s a single parent to a pair of very small twin boys. The most she needs is two bedrooms for now.
“To have a family and to [expletive] it up,” Matt says. “It’s caused me to do a lot of soul searching.” He walks with Gloria to the doorway.
“Let me give you an analogy,” he says. “This is the door. I just want to know where you are.” Gloria slowly shuts the door. This entire scene should be a commercial for condoms.
At Beso, the site of the attack on Draya, the women gather to celebrate Laura’s birthday and upcoming move to Orlando. Laura’s parents as well as Matt show up to the party. Laura looks as if she’s lost a lot of weight, but there’s something very strange going on with her forehead.
Her hairline is shaved so that all the baby hair is missing and she’s got several knots in her forehead. I’m guessing that maybe she just received botox injections. She looks as if she was just in a fire.
Gloria takes the microphone. “We just wanted to say thank you,” Gloria says. “My sister actually is moving to Orlando.” Someone brings out a cake. “The cake was just an extra added goody,” Laura says. This is boring. Beat it Laura.
Commercials. Fiat would like me to believe that Jennifer Lopez drives through urban neighborhoods hugging little ethnically ambiguous children. They’d also like me to believe that Jennifer Lopez drives a Fiat.
Draya, Gloria, Imani, Laura and Malaysia meet at a restaurant to confront Jackie. “We’re calling it Judgment Day,” Draya says. They’re all wearing cake make-up, tight black mini dresses and stiletto heels, save for Malaysia who is wearing a black jumpsuit. They all look like they’re headed in to film a Robert Palmer NOTE: The late singer video.
After the group is seated, they pull out a pen and notepad to list all of Jackie’s misdeeds. Draya, who I’ve just noticed is left-handed, has appointed herself secretary. This is so juvenile. “I don’t give a [expletive],” Laura says. “I’ll cut her off. You’ll get your voice when we’re done with you. You really tired to ruin our lives, like in real life.”
There she goes again. It’s really dark in there and the women all look completely overdressed. They’ve got several tables pushed together with nothing but glasses of water in front of them. It looks like they’re dining at Old Country Buffet.
The guest of honor finally arrives. Jackie is wearing another corset type of garment. Her breasts bounce vigorously as she walks. She enters the restaurant and exchanges pleasantries with the other women. They all look nervous.
Gloria begins to speak. Jackie cuts her off and orders a drink. They all sit in silence until Jackie’s drink is delivered. “I’m going to get my drink,” Jackie says in an interview. “I don’t care if it’s silent, you’re going to wait.”
Laura tells Jackie that they will begin with a listening session and that there will be no talking. I’m surprised that Jackie is allowing this. Laura takes the notepad and begins to read what Draya wrote. Apparently, the list consists primarily of quotes from Jackie.
“So, Imani,” Laura reads. “Never had my back. Malaysia—I shouldn’t talk to her anymore. Draya—needs to be slapped. Imani takes the notepad and reads her portion.
“Laura thinks that I am a hater of her,” she reads. Now it’s Malaysia’s turn. “You said that Draya was a sneaky [expletive].”
This is so stupid. Do they realize how they sound? Is this what it was like at the popular girls table in the cafeteria? If so, I’ve never been so happy to have been an unpopular nerd before now. I swear I’m watching a dramatic reenactment of a 12 year-old’s journal entries.
“What Draya told me,” Jackie says. “And you’re going to admit this,” she says as she looks at Draya. “I don’t have to admit anything,” Draya says. “Excuse me,” Jackie says. “Did you say it or not?” “Did I say what,” Draya asks.
I’m confused too. This is one of Jackie’s Jedi Mind tricks. “You’re not even allowed to ask me a question right now,” Draya says.
Oh yes! That was just the trigger to turn Jackie into Whitney. Let’s get it started. “Oh you must be out of your [expletive] mind,” Jackie says. “Girl I’m allowed to do what the [expletive] I want! You must be crazy!”
Jackie begins to meditate. “Woo sah, Woo sah,” she chants. Wait a minute. What is she doing? I don’t want her meditating. I want her to run through 30 different personalities and finally burst into an uncontrollable Phoenix of crazy. I want my Jackiesaurus Rex!
“My section is very small,” Draya says as she points to the notepad of misdeeds. “You got it coming!” “Girl please,” Jackie says. “I ain’t got a [expletive] thing coming but you guys telling the truth.” The women all talk over each other and it’s impossible to hear what anyone is saying.
Laura finally speaks above the noise. “You can’t come here saying that we’re going to be women,” she says. Jackie cuts her off. “Laura, are you willing to put the truth on the table,” Jackie asks.
“It’s on the table,” the women shout. “You’re lying,” Jackie says. Malaysia tries to diffuse the situation. “We’re going to talk like ladies,” she says.
“You’re not going to direct at me, you’re not going to bark at me.” “Malaysia, what did I say about you,” Jackie asks. “I’m done,” Malaysia says. “Good,” Jackie says. I figured you would be.” Ha! “No, you’re going to talk to me with respect,” Malaysia says.
Jackie tells Malaysia not to go Compton on her. “I’m not going Compton,” Malaysia says. “I’m going souther-in belle.”
Jesus. Can’t Vh1 hire tutors to bring on set like they did for the kids on the Cosby Show? “Why would you say that I was unstable,” Imani asks Jackie. “Never,” Jackie says. “You want to call her?”
I’m assuming the person in question is the basketball wife who dished the dirt on Jackie to Malaysia. Jackie pulls out her cell phone. The women all ask Jackie to call the unnamed woman. Jackie holds the phone to her ear.
“Imani my question to you is, look at me in my face,” Jackie says. Draya notices that Jackie never dialed a number. Those lefties are so perceptive. “Jackie you got the phone to your ear, it’s not even dialing,” Draya says. “Thank you, ho,” Jackie says. “Thank you!”
Laura says Jackie even had the phone upside down. Jackie leaves a voicemail on the unnamed woman’s phone asking her to call her back. She puts on the same voice that my mom used to when she spoke to the phone company. “If you can call me back right away that would be fantastic,” she says.
“Jackie, we felt like we’ve brought everything to the table,” Gloria says. “I don’t,” Jackie says. “We feel like you are the common denominator between all the stuff that has been started,” Gloria says.
“This relationship isn’t working.” “And,” Jackie asks. “We’re breaking up with you,” Draya says. This is hilarious!
“It doesn’t really matter Gloria,” Jackie says. “The sad thing is, the lies are still there. So I want you to take your truth and go.” “I got mine,” Gloria says.
The women begin to get up to leave, but Jackie’s not finished. She’s going out in a blaze of glory. “And you live with it knowing that you [expletive] her man or whatever you did,” Jackie says.
Only the censors didn’t quite catch that last expletive. I heard it loud and clear. “Bye, Bye,” Jackie says. “Take your little paperwork with you.” “That’s our truth on the table,” Gloria says.
“Uh huh, thanks, bye,” Jackie says as she sips her drink and waves goodbye. “Today’s your funeral,” Draya says in an interview. “You’re dead to us.” Is that why they all wore black?
Previews…John Salley hosts the Basketball Wives: L.A. reunion. I’m hoping for an appearance from Jackiesaurus Rex.