This week’s episode of “Love & Hip-hop: Atlanta” felt like a dull rehashing of the same old conflicts, without any magnificent Momma Dee or K. Michelle quotables. We might as well begin with LHHA’s most frustrating storyline: Mimi and Stevie.
With that, K. Michelle shares her surprise: a song she wrote for Mimi. It’s an angry, sing-along-and-cry song – think Keyshia Cole circa 2006 – about Mimi’s heartache, Joseline’s pregnancy and Stevie’s betrayal.
Across town, Karlie meets with her manager Malcolm Miles. He usually doesn’t have any time for her, but he’s heard about her budding love affair with Benzino and wants her focused. He doesn’t want her to be affiliated with someone with a bad reputation. Not sure how worried he should be about industry politics since Karlie can’t half sing, but nevertheless, he urges her to find someone “hot and relevant.”
Joseline, the show’s other aspiring singer, is working with Fly Dantoni, one of the other producers that works in Stevie’s studio, when Stevie pops up. He tries to act nonchalant, reminding her that her contract entitles him to 30 percent, regardless of who produces her music.
She believes he’s jealous of her talent, but Stevie says he wants to end their sexual relationship. She spins around to remind him what he’ll be missing – ugh – and tells him she doesn’t want to work with him anymore. Of course, Stevie doesn’t plan to let that happen. He tells her he’s willing to get lawyers involved, if necessary.
Then we check in with Rasheeda, her gorgeous hair, and Kirk, whose storyline is moving at a snail’s pace. She wants to get other management to save their relationship – blah blah, blah. He misses the “Rasheeda who was excited to go to Waffle House and get a double hashbrown,” and is upset that her career has caused them to put off major things, like having a child.
Karlie and Benzino, on the other hand, are moving way too fast. Karlie is pretending to sleep – her weave would’ve been wrapped in real life – when Benzino surprises her with breakfast in bed, and a key to his house. In his confessional, he says he wants to speed the process up because he doesn’t know how long her good looks will last. Dude, I’m crying real tears.
Karlie decides she wants a side of her foot with bacon, and tells Benzino about her manager’s fears for her career if they continue dating. Upset, he tells her that the industry is not everything, and that they need to get her a hit record first, because her career isn’t exactly jumping, either.
Karlie raises her eyebrows, but he wants her to separate her personal life from her career. There’s fake tears and whining from her, and groans and eye rolling from me.
Over at Piedmont Park, K. Michelle is performing “Bury My Heart” at ATL Live, and Erica and Mimi go to support her. Sure enough, Stevie J, Benzino and their band show up and perform a song he wrote to tell Mimi how he feels.
He’s singing some nonsense about wanting to end the arguing and fussing, while wearing a wife beater and suspenders. Mimi isn’t impressed. She is upset about this sneak attack because she explicitly stated she doesn’t want to see him outside of therapy.
After the “performance” he asks her to walk somewhere quiet with him so they can talk. She wants to know why he strayed, but he predictably refuses to answer. He just says he doesn’t want to beef with her anymore. As usual, he can’t take responsibility for his own actions.
Then it gets emotional. Mimi thinks he doesn’t understand how he’s hurt her. She’s raising their baby alone, and he’s hurt her deep this time. Just when I was yelling “Don’t believe him, Mimi! He’s the devil” at the screen, she leaves with him. I give up.
Speaking of disloyal men, Scrappy and Shay are having some fun time at the bowling alley when he decides to fill her in on his official breakup with Erica, including his request that she “look out for him on the child support”. Shay tells him his timing was terrible, but he insists that he and Erica agreed that he would give her lump sum instead.
Last episode, Erica told her mother that Scrappy hadn’t deposited the money, but he told Shay he put the money in his daughter Emani’s account, but Erica wanted it in her own account. He thinks she wants to have a hold on him, and plans to get a lawyer involved.
Shay knows involving attorneys will make matters worse, and urges him to work it out peacefully, regardless of his relationship status with Erica. If she weren’t sleeping with his shady behind, I’d respect her right now.
K. Michelle, though usually my favorite cast member, was wrapped up in an irritating storyline this week. Looking for a sweet roughneck to love, she goes on a date with some guy with a mohawk – in 2012. They have a conversation full of dim-witted innuendos, and share a sloppy kiss before they go bowling. The only thing that stopped me from flipping channels was the new Santigold track playing in the background.
Fortunately, we later learn that she didn’t like Mohawk dude, after all. She tells her friend Robert that she doesn’t feel a spark, and he wants to know if it is the baggage she is carrying or her poor taste in men.
If that wasn’t enough torture, we had to sit through another Karlie/Benzino scene. To prove his own industry clout, Benzino introduces Karlie to Vincent Herbert, a producer who has worked with the likes of Lady Gaga and Mindless Behavior.
Apparently, we’re still pretending Karlie’s singing voice doesn’t sound like a drunken screech owl, because Herbert compliments her new, fresh style. He wants her to do a trial run with one of his producers.
On to Stevie and Mimi’s first therapy session, where he finally admits that he is a liar, claiming that he wants to be back in love with her, and wants her to be happy. Mimi was glad he admitted it, but the therapist sensed a major betrayal led them to this point.
Stevie says his artist “turned up pregnant,” which annoys Mimi. They didn’t just bump into each other. It was a regular affair, and the therapist wants them to admit that he loves Joseline. He says he loves her as “someone to kick it with”, but he wants Mimi.
He lies, saying he hasn’t seen Joseline in weeks, but that doesn’t pacify Mimi. She wants him to admit that there have been others besides Joseline. The therapist is shocked that this wasn’t his first affair, and tries to get to the bottom of all of their problems.
Turns out, both Mimi and Stevie had non-existent relationships with their mothers, causing them to develop unhealthy habits. Mimi feels like she was looking for love she never got, to which Stevie creepily replies, “Imma give it to you” and wipes her tears.
Stevie, on the other hand, claims he never wanted to know about his mother. The therapist tells Stevie he must handle that pain of that abandonment so that he doesn’t put it on someone else.
He says he can’t think about it, but Mimi says she wants to work through it together. Normally, I’m all about forgiveness, but with Stevie J you have to be more cynical. Everything he does is self-serving and calculated. Hopefully next episode speeds things along, and ends with Stevie’s car being keyed by someone – anyone.
More from The RootDC