To reach optimum level is what we strive for. Even if it’s only once. We know that the arrival to that place is going to come with peaks and valleys but when we arrive, it’ll be worth it in the end. Even if it’s only once. Think then how it must feel to hit that peak and level off at GREAT! In the eyes of millions of ardent fans, that’s exactly where the STARZ network series “POWER” landed. While the original series ran its course after a six-season run, the cast of characters were so entrenched in the culture, that the creators rolled the dice that viewers would stay glued to see how new chapters would play out. The first of these was the Tariq St Patrick (Michael Rainey) centered “Power Book II: Ghost,” which kept the story moving. Now we circle the block with the third leg of “Power Book III: Raising Kanan.” Apropos that the HARDEST character on Television’s HARDEST show would get that look. Sascha Penn creator and showrunner explains, “The villains are always the one’s you’re most interested in and with Kanan, you either loved him or hated him, but you were always gripped by him and his story. Over the course of the original series, you’d get glimpses of who he was and were he came from, but he was the character that begged for future explanation and exploration. So, we’re going to take you back to 1991 and really look under the hood to see how this KID became that GUY!” Mekai Curtis in the titular role as Kanan Stark offers, “In 1991, at 15 years old, Kanan was a child. He was trying to figure out what his role in school was, what his role at home was, what his role in life was; but his biggest thing was to be there for his mom.” He adds, “in this journey you’re going to see that he had the raw innate instincts but lacked street smarts, experience and game. You’re going to see how his environment, influences and choices made him lose his innocence and desensitized him and effect the man that we saw.”
Penn, alongside executive producers Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and Courtney A. Kemp adhere to the power structure so to speak and maintains as its base Grade A writing and the write actors in place to interpret, convey and nuance the emotions needed to connect with the faithful and growing audience. The cast includes Omar Epps (“House,” “Love and Basketball”), London Brown (“Ballers”), Malcolm Mays (“Them,” “Snowfall”), Hailey Kilgore (“Amazing Stories”), Joey Bada$$ (“Two Distant Strangers”), Toby Sandeman (“The Royals”), Shanley Caswell (“The Conjuring”) and Lovie Simone (“The Craft: Legacy”) with Quincy Brown (“Dope”) recurring. Kemp excitedly says, “There’s a lot of great performances and I was spellbound by the amazing cast.” The potential breakthrough star is poised to be Patina Miller (“Madam Secretary,” “The Hunger Games” franchise) as Raquel “Raq” Thomas. As the matriarch of the family business Miller saw traits of herself in the character. “The one thing I really needed to find was this Black woman who loved her son and was willing to go to the end of the world for him,” Miller said before offering commonalities between herself and the woman on the pages. “I was born to a young mother so I can get the prospective of what the child would feel and I’m a fierce mother. There were many qualities that aligned between myself and Raquel, but I think and hope that a lot of women will see themselves in her. She was willed by the need to provide and protect the family but through that strength she had a vulnerability.”
After the first two weeks it appears the streets have spoken, and the show is a hit. So much so that STARZ has greenlit a second season of “Power Book III: Raising Kanan.”
“One season isn’t enough to tell the coming-of-age story of Kanan Stark and his mother, Raq, a fierce and successful woman who is a force of nature,” said Jeffrey Hirsch, president and CEO of STARZ. “The anticipation globally for more of the ‘Power’ universe made it clear that the Kanan story needs to continue.”
Lookin’ like for 50, success is part of the game. Over and out, holla next week, til them, enjoy the nightlife.