Remorse for One Less Survivor
I’m like two weeks late with this, but there has been a lot going on (no, not really). I just wanted to give my review on one of my favorite TV series, being that television is like the lover I never had. It disappoints me, but it gives me what I want and it is not a sensitive SOB.
Survivor’s Remorse is a 30-minute comedy series that airs on Starz. The series highlights around the life of a pro basketball contract, Cam Calloway, who moves to Atlanta with his family. Lebron hails as executive producer to the showrunner as it centers around how Cam and his family ultimately deal with the pressure and stress that comes with wealth and Cam’s recent fame. The cast includes Jessie T. Usher as Cam Calloway, Tichina Arnold who plays his mother, Cassie, RonReaco Lee who plays his cousin and manager, Reggie, along with the very funny Mike Epps playing Cam’s uncle, Julius. Just to name a few. My dad actually put me on to the show. I have heard of it in passing, but never took the time to actually sit down and watch it. Thank goodness for OnDemand, for where would I be without it?
The second season left its viewers with a very shocking cliffhanger after venturing into the deep issues such as classism and racism throughout the season’s ten-episode run. In the season finale, Cam bought his new girlfriend, Allison, a very expensive SUV to show him how much he cared for her. The family decides to take a ride- Cam, Allison, Mary Charles, and Cassie—hop into the SUV while Uncle Julius decides to take Allison’s old car. While driving—and trying to retrieve a marijuana pipe he dropped—he runs a red light and is immediately slammed on the driver’s side by a truck, triggering multiple flips and ultimately throwing him from the driver’s seat. Talk about unexpected. As Uncle Julius lies on the pavement covered in cuts, blood, and bruises, he utters, “I wish I believed in God” as his Family is at his side. The scene fades, leaving viewers to wonder “is he or isn’t he?”. Is it possible for a show in its second season to kill off one of its major characters? The Walking Dead did it in its second season finale when Rick killed Shane, causing him to turn into a walker, which left Carl to finish him off with a bullet to the head. However, if you have read the comics—like I have—you saw it coming…but still. Survivor’s Remorse is no comic. It is merely an infant on the verge of walking.
When the season two final episode aired, there were many rumors speculating that Epp’s left due to the fact that ABC was creating a reboot of Uncle Buck, starring Nia Long. Okay, I get it. It would be very hard to travel back and forth from Atlanta to Los Angeles for both series. Would he have the time? Would there be scheduling conflicts? Heck yea. However, with a little digging I discovered that Epps stated the reason for his departure from the Starz series was the fact that he wanted more money and they weren’t trying to play ball. Too many times I have heard this, especially since my devastation of Christopher Meloni aka Detective Stabler leaving Law and Order: SVU after it’s twelfth season due to no pay increase. It seems like if the money doesn’t talk, then one must walk.
The time finally came. On July 24th, season three premiered with two back-to-back episodes, “The Night of the Crash” and “The Ritual”, racking in over six million viewers. The first episode started where season two’s season finale left off. Julius is rushed to the hospital while Cassie and Cam ride with him in the ambulance, overcome with panic and sadness for their loved one. “Julius, if you see a white light, STOP, and turn around and head toward the dark!”, Cassie screams at her brother as he lies helplessly on the stretcher. The family huddles in the waiting room and waits for answers from the doctor. Cam and Allison are stricken with guilt; Allison believing that it was her car that caused the accident and Cam regretting getting her the new car for his uncle would not have drove her old car in the first place. Mary Charles feeling those sentiments exactly.
Unfortunately, Julius did not survive his injuries and the family is left in their mourning and grief. There are a range of emotions between them; each finding their own way to cope. The two episodes of the premiere displayed a different side of the Calloway family I have never seen before. The comedy series that was usually boisterous and uproarious, was now more serious and solemn. I would lie if I said I did not shed a tear at Cam’s eulogy at Julius’ funeral. The series’ writers were able to splash some funny with the arrival of Julius’ friends from Boston so that the entire premiere would not leave viewers utterly inconsolable.
Though seeing such amazing episodes was refreshing after watching the gritty and more intense, Power, the moment was bittersweet. One could clearly notice that something was missing. Uncle Julius was the patriarch of the Calloway family; wildly candid and hysterically unpolished. Though it was sad to see him go, I’m glad that he left with a helluva bang.