This Blog will contain spoilers sooooo if you haven’t watched Luke Cage season II… look away now
No seriously, don’t read this unless you have watched the entire season…
The hubster and I binged watched this last season as I took a little vacay from work. This season (to me) was equally as good as the previous and had some twists and turns. Now, granted it’s been over a year since I watched the first season…so some of the deets are a bit foggy as to what was revealed with Mariah and her daughter born of incest ‘Tilda.
Mariah Stokes-Dillard, was a pillar of her community. She worked hard to put space from her nefarious family name into building a legacy that she thought would overshadow some of their more sinister dealings. There were a few things that she couldn’t shake and honestly I am so glad these issues were brought out during this season. I am going to touch on three: colorism, incest, the the myth of the superhero like strength of the black woman
Mariah speaks openly about being called “African” and being made fun of by her peers because of her complexion. She went on to say that her Uncle Pete was the only person to ever call her “pretty”, his compliments soon turned to him meandering his way into her bed and raping her. The rape produced her daughter Matilda, who was passed off as Mariah’s daughter with a closeted gay man. Oh what a twisted web we weave. As with many families, the abuse was not noted and Pete ultimately paid with his life when Mariah’s cousin found out what happened. Incest is a taboo subject, but I can’t tell you how many times this subject will come up various people I’ve met through my years in social service. It happens much more than we think and even more than we speak.
The dynamic between Tilda and Mariah is hard to watch. Tilda, although very aware of her mother’s toxicity still yearns for a relationship. Even after her mother tells her that she was never wanted and that she never loved her ‘Tilda still has to see for herself if her mother truly is a monster. Confronting her in Harlem’s Paradise and asking about the masacare at Gwen’s ‘Tilda still seems shocked to learn the extent in which her mother will go to secure her crown in Harlem. So many mothers (especially mothers of color) have a torrid relationship with their daughters. In an attempt to “toughen” their daughters up for the world, but the damage inflicted upon their psyches is something worth mentioning. In their last scene together Mariah (and I am paraphrasing) tells ‘Tilda that due to Mariah’s influence in her life that she will never be hurt, because she won’t allow anyone to get close, she will never be betrayed because she will let any one in.
Emotions are very, very natural and will come out one way or another. Dealing with those emotions in an improper way can have lasting affects. It certainly did on the Stokes family… which in turn represents so many families of color whose secrets make them sick.
Here are some links that maybe helpful if you’ve experienced any trauma.