Malik Wright can not resist the bottle anymore.
Like his fellow teammate Derwin, life seems to be changing too fast for Malik. Both players realize they’ll need to make some tough decisions soon in this week’s episode of "The Game.”
Malik’s disaster begins when his mom, Tasha, finds him sprawled on her living room floor with only enough coherence to grunt when his name is mentioned.
“Ya boy done fell of the wagon,” says Tasha to Tee-Tee.
“I took your advice and I chose myself,” she continues, referencing Tee-Tee’s suggestion in last week’s episode that she choose a romance with Pookie over carrying Melanie and Derwin’s baby. “But I got one loose end. Your boy right here, he’s condemning me to a lifetime of servitude.”
Later when Malik wakes up, he realizes he can’t remember anything from the night before. Tee-Tee, inspired by the movie “The Hangover,” has an idea: Malik should check his pockets for clues.
His idea works. Malik finds a receipt, which ends up being the first piece to his puzzle — and a wake-up call that he needs to check his spending.
“I spent two G’s? Ain’t no way in hell I drunk all that liquor by myself. Who was I with?”
Tee-Tee again comes to the rescue, suggesting they head to Chardonnay’s bar to get some details.
As soon as they arrive, Chardonnay lays out all of Malik’s cringe-worthy moments (such as touching her booty and her left boob), but also provides them with some useful information.
“Seems like you and the owner of the Sabers was having a good time,” she says. “Besides, you didn’t start drinking until after he left.”
Hanging out at the bar with Roger Keith? The same Roger who has had Malik on his bad list since finding out Malik slept with his wife? Malik can’t imagine what would bring he and Roger together to hang out as friends and returns to his mom’s place more confused than ever.
Meanwhile Melanie is having her own mental anguish. The Sunbeams are meeting, which means time to complain about life’s most pressing issues: the lack of seafood variety on the skybox menu at games and the crappy forks they are given as utensils.
Tired of their conversation about first-world problems, Melanie lashes out.
“Enough!” she says. “It’s the same thing every single week with your freakin’ trivial problems. ... I can go on and about each one of you dingbats. ... So here this: You will no longer add to my unhappiness. ... The days of me being queen bee to a bunch of D-list desperate housewives is over. I quit!”
She throws them out in a Martin Payne-like fashion. But once Derwin hears about it, he questions her rash decision.
“You quit the Sunbeams?” he says. “How could you do that without talking to me? I thought we were a team.”
Melanie says she’s fed up with the other woman. She’s unhappy.
“Yeah, you’ve said that, Melanie. You’ve said that like a thousand and five times,” says Derwin.
Melanie responds with a plan that will uplift her mood: “I wanna go back to Johns Hopkins.”
“God, you are so selfish,” says Derwin. “Don’t you know my career is based in San Diego, and my son is based in San Diego? ... I have one time to concentrate on my career and my son.”
He ends his rant with a suggestion that Melanie wait a mere 20 years or so — once Derwin’s career winds down and his son, DJ, finishes college — to return to school.
Almost nothing he says seems to change Melanie’s mood or career plans.
Jason and Chardonnay also have a lovers’ quarrel in this week’s episode. (As it was one of the less-interesting scenarios, I’m keeping this part of the rundown brief.)
During a visit to Chardonnay’s job, Jason becomes bothered by all of the flirting between Chardonnay and her male customers. She jokingly tells one customer that the only ring she has is the one on the glass she’s holding and lets him call her baby. Jason leaves abruptly, and later tells Chardonnay how bothered he was by her behavior.
“Being attentive to those men is how I make my living,” she says. “Those tips are going to one day lead to me opening Spadonnay.”
Jason leaves but meets up with her later at her bar.
“I’m sorry. I completely respect and support the fact that you’re a hardworking woman,” he says. “At the end of the day I’m just a man who doesn’t want other men getting his wife’s attention.”
She teases him about being in love (which he confessed to in last week’s episode). He prompts her to say those three little words to him, but she (gently) draws the line.
“You know we both do things in our own time, and if and when I’m ready to say something like that to you I will let you know in my own way,” she says.
Back to Malik: He and Tee-Tee have returned to Tasha’s house to help clean up after his wild night. Tee-Tee flips on the TV and is given the last clue to figuring out what happened.
Sabers quarterback Kwan Kirkland cannot finish the season because of an injury. Malik is poised to take his position, and hopefully lead the team to victory.
“Roger must have told you about Kwan, and that’s why you got twisted,” says Tee-Tee.
Upon hearing the news, Malik finds a glass and some liquor, and tries to pour himself a drink.
Tee-Tee’s words make him pause just before taking a sip.
“Before you take that drink, just think about it. Are you really willing to throw away everything you been working for all because you scared of having everything you always wanted?”
“Naw, not today,” says Malik.
Back with Melanie and Derwin, Melanie visits Tasha for some advice.
Is she really as selfish as Derwin claims?
Yes, says Tasha. But she also assures Melanie that following her dreams may be a worthwhile, bur risky, venture.
“You can put yourself first, but you got to make a choice, Mel,” she says. ”So if you want your career you gon have to give up something else.”
At the next Sunbeams meeting, Melanie apologizes and asks to be reinstated as president. No one argues against her.
Before Melanie can move on to other parts of her agenda, some of the women chime in to admit that they too are unhappy
“I purchased the wrong house,” cries one Sunbeam.
“I’m unhappy, too,” says another. “Javon ain’t the man I really wanted. ... The one that got away is Derwin.” (Yes, Melanie does threaten to give her the beat-down of her life for her ignorant statement.)
Some time after the meeting, Derwin returns home and complains that Melanie has done it again: Because of her impromptu therapy session, many of his teammates canceled for practice that day.
“Boo, you are killing me,” says Derwin. Melanie says her unhappiness is real, but Derwin says it’s a result of her lack of faith in God.
“My relationship with him is a personal one,” she says. “And FYI, I prayed about this. ... The God that I believe speaks to my heart. And my heart wants me to go to Johns Hopkins.”
And to make her message crystal clear, she adds this line: “I’m willing to go alone.”
Derwin doesn’t even blink. He tells her to hold on and then steps out of their bedroom. He comes back with luggage, and one final thought:
“Guess you gotta follow your heart then, right?”
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