Source: VH1 / Viacom
In a deleted scene from episode one of Season 9 of Basketball Wives, Jackie Christie had a conversation with husband Doug about the rift in the “sisterhood” and the claims of colorism from OG. While Jackie makes clear from the beginning that she doesn’t believe the behavior and comments of Evelyn Lozada were colorist, she wants to help hash things out and be a “bridge” between the two women. Doug, offering wise advice, tells her that may not be the best idea.
“Always understand, if you’re a bridge, you’re gonna get walked on,” he said. “You’re in the middle. When you’re in the middle, people crossing from side to side. You gotta let people learn on their own at the same time. It doesn’t matter if they don’t see it for themselves.”
Boy was he right.
Still, this idea of being a bridge between OG and the group was something Jackie was insistent upon. She would attempt to mediate conversations between OG and Kristen, as well as with Malaysia, and go back and forth between her friend and the ladies (Evelyn, Shaunie & Co.) at the other house trying to help bring the collective together. She was fine with the role until last night’s episode where she reached her breaking point. OG and Malaysia’s conversation didn’t end with resolution, OG got into it with the Dorsey sisters, and in turn, Shaunie decided she didn’t want to stay around and hear about too many more discussions gone sour. Shaunie’s exit, which led to Evelyn’s and as we’ll see next episode, everyone else’s, seemed to be the straw that broke the camel’s back for Jackie. She was already fed up after OG said the group as a whole had a colorism issue, which she directly interpreted as her specifically being called a colorist. With that on her mind, by the time she talked with OG, she was upset.
She said that people were letting their pride get in the way of working through things and put the responsibility on OG to move on. She asked her if she would consider the idea that colorism wasn’t what she experienced last season, to which OG said no.
“It’s come to the point now where we need to f–king do better,” Jackie told her. “And I’m asking you as your sister and your friend would you please agree with them that look, ‘whatever y’all is feeling I felt it was some colorism but I’m willing to move on’? Because it’s the right thing to do. Not who’s wrong, not who’s right. Not who shouldn’t have did it, not who started it. I don’t give a f–k about none of that. We gotta drop the walls, all of us, and let’s move forward and be the sisterhood you know we can be.”
But does OG know what the sisterhood can be? She hasn’t necessarily been welcomed into it at any point. During her conversation with Malaysia, it came out that when she met her for the first time, Malaysia made comments behind her back about her style and her breasts in her side-boob baring top. We also know that numerous other cast members had plenty to say about her breasts
and style. And according to OG, before meeting Shaunie O’Neal, she overheard the show EP being taken over by another producer to meet her, only for Shaunie to reply, “Let’s not and say we did
.” If you need more examples of less than warm and chummy moments directed towards her, you’re welcome to watch Season 7 and 8.
I don’t think there’s anything wrong with Jackie wanting to be rid of strife in her friend group, or asking OG to meet the ladies halfway, but she’s focused on mending things for the wrong reasons and in the wrong way. While she did encourage the other women to try and speak with OG when she was initially “open” to conversations, she never asked them to simply move on and say they may have behaved in a colorist way, apologize and move forward. Instead, she asked OG, likely because she is standing her ground on the matter alone, to relinquish her position, second-guess her experience and play nice for the sake of the sisterhood. But as Teri said in 1997’s Soul Food, “F– the family.” The sisterhood hasn’t treated OG well, and honestly, for some time it didn’t treat many of its members right, both Malaysia and Jackie included.
Jackie wants everyone to play nice because she wants the ladies to be able to come together and drink and have fun and be like they are at the very beginning of every season (because by the midway point they no longer get along). She wanted a reprieve from the heaviness of the pandemic to be able to enjoy good vibes with her girls, and she feels OG is standing in the way of that. As her friend, she felt like she could tell her to take a beat from her soapbox and get over it so that everyone could live and turn up in harmony. But how do you tell someone who was isolated from the sisterhood for unfair reasons to get over it so they can fit in to that same group? That’s like Steve Harvey telling Mo’Nique to drop her issues
with Hollywood (Oprah, Lee Daniels and Tyler Perry specifically) because it was keeping her from being embraced by them. At a certain point, people who feel wronged don’t care about that. It’s about the principle. Plus, it’s one thing to tell someone to perhaps go in with an open mind to make room for the possibility of reconciliation. It’s another to put the bulk of the responsibility for that on the aggrieved.
While I did say that I wondered what OG’s endgame was
, that was in regards to how she wanted to handle the heart-to-heart conversations with those who came to her not necessarily knowing the right thing to say, but wanting to make peace. Still, I don’t want her to just say, “You know what? Maybe it wasn’t colorism” so that her co-stars will like her. They never will. She’d be better off leaving the show, breaking her contract and figuring out how to deal with that after the fact. The standards for her were completely different from those of her cast mates last season, and to all of a sudden pretend that it’s all good and dandy would be like saying that it was ok. So no, Jackie.
But aside from wanting to be free to have fun in the way only Jackie Christie can (sex, cigars and animals for the win), I do think her frustration also comes from knowing that the show as a whole is on the line. If the women can’t get along, don’t want to stay around each other long, or are “scared” to film with OG for fear that things they say could be misinterpreted for as long as her contract lasts, as this shortened season proves, they can’t make it work. It’s not just the “sisterhood” on the line (because she and Malaysia waited more than a year and for cameras to show up to mend their sisterhood), it’s about the series. If Shaunie no longer wants to be bothered with the drama she helps to create, that could spell the end for this iteration of Basketball Wives. Perhaps that would be for the best.