Queen Sugar has handled many serious issues including addiction, racism, police brutality, and domestic violence.
On Queen Sugar Season 4 Episode 10 the plot revolved around Darla being sexually assaulted.
No, it didn't happen on screen or even within the timeline of this installment but that didn't make it any less powerful.
We already knew that Darla was an addict. When she first appeared on Queen Sugar Season 1 Episode 1 she was trying to convince Ralph Angel that she was no longer using and begging him for a chance to see her son again.
The details surrounding Blue's conception were sketchy at best. It took years for Darla to admit to Ralph Angel that he might not be Blue's biological father.
The assumption had been that she had been using drugs at the time and was unfaithful to Ralph Angel.
The reality turned out to be something much different.
Violet: Darla, Baby, you listen to me. Listen, if you were out of it then you were not in the right mind to agree to anything. Do you hear me? And that ain’t just my opinion that’s the law. You understand?
Violet: But, my ass. There is no "but" here.
Darla: I was…I was… Maybe, maybe I didn’t say no.
Violet: And maybe you did or maybe you didn’t say nothing because you couldn’t. If you can’t remember any of this…It was hard for me too but he was my husband and I was young and thought this was just the way it had to be. I even stopped saying no because it didn’t seem to matter. Blamed myself, thought there was something wrong with me, but I know now that it wasn’t right then and it ain’t right now. No means no, no matter the circumstances. And even if you don’t say no, or can’t, don’t no man or anybody else have the right to take advantage of you. That’s rape.
Hearing Darla's friend, Jordan, look back on that night as though it were great fun to see her supposedly best friend get passed between two different guys was nauseating.
Not only did Jordan still come across as high-class party trash, but it says something about Darla's mother that Jordan was always one of her favorites of Darla's friends.
Between Nova's book outing her past at work, and Ralph Angel starting a romance with Deesha, Darla has been on the edge of relapse for a while now.
So it's no surprise that the truth of what had occurred, and the fact that Darla still couldn't remember it, sent her running to the nearest bar and downing shots until she was numb.
Thankfully, the person she ran into afterward was Violet.
Violet and Darla have had their issues, but to Violet's credit, she didn't judge. Violet took care of Darla while asking what could have happened to have her destroying the new life she'd worked so hard to build.
Violet sharing how her former husband, Jimmy Dale raped her, was equally as powerful.
Given how strong and independent Violet is now, it can be difficult to imagine her as the abused woman who thought that her husband raping her was just the way things had to be.
Conceivably, Darla will find hope in sharing her story because despite how low Violet may have been, she's now married to the love of her life and owns her dream business.
Hopefully, Darla will find her way to that type of happiness too.
Some people would have gotten angry at Darla or blamed her for getting high in the first place, but Ralph Angel didn't.
He stood by Darla and comforted her. He saw the hell that she had gone through, and was still going through, and never once blamed her for someone assaulting her when she was unable to fight back.
But will seeing this type of vulnerability from Darla change Ralph Angel's thoughts on moving his relationship with Deesha to the next level?
Certainly, the two missed phone calls from Deesha weren't a good sign.
Speaking of Ralph Angel, he's done a fantastic job of late, of holding his temper and thinking things through before he reacts.
When he learned that Blue had been in the back of a police car because Micah had lost track of him at the park, Ralph Angel could have been furious as many parents would be.
But instead, he realized that Micah appeared to be far more shaken up than Blue.
Prosper: Young man, it’s okay if you ain’t okay, you know that right?
Ralph Angel: You okay?
Micah: You know, I’m just tired of it.
Prosper: We can’t ever get so tired we start letting other folks tell us who we are. You hear me?
Micah: Yes, sir.
Prosper: You keep your head up. Don’t ever let them put you in that place, that dark place. You keep living, loving, growing and doing for others. That’s the key. Just like we do for you, you make sure you do it for somebody else.
Did the cop come off more aggressively than he had to at that moment? Yes.
Did Micah react more heatedly than perhaps he should have? Yes.
Maybe the officer didn't legally have to ask for Micah's ID, but as a parent, I'd want him to do so before handing my child over to anyone.
But before that incident took place, Micah did a wonderful job of being the big cousin Blue can talk to about things like his parents beginning to date other people.
Micah: You know, Blue, I remember when my parents first started hanging out with other people. At first, it made me sad cause I thought it meant we weren’t going to spend any time together, but I met the other people and they were nice, you know? I think that my mom and dad are actually happier.
Blue: So you didn’t feel sad anymore, ever?
Micah: Sometimes. Sometimes, but you know what? There’s a bright side, a big one.
Micah: You get two Christmases. You get two birthday presents. You get two graduation parties once I get my college letters. You get two separate rooms that you can decorate and play in.
Blue: Double presents is pretty awesome.
Micah: It is.
Elsewhere, Charley and Nova tried to heal their relationship by going on a rustic, women's retreat, which combined a high-end yurt with outhouses.
Earlier, Nova talked with Aunt Vi, who pointed out that although Nova was sorry now, it didn't change the damage that had been done, nor did she think Nova would have done anything differently if the family had tried to stop her from publishing her book.
Nova: I’m not giving up. Please, don’t give up on me.
Violet: Nova, I’ve got memories I left in the past seeping into my bones again, invading my mind, my marriage. It don’t feel good. That’s on you.
Nova: You know what, I’m more sorry than I’ve ever been about anything. I should have discussed what I was doing with you, with everyone. Got your blessing.
Violet: And if I have said "no, don’t do it," would you have listened?
Let's face it, all of the Bordelons are strong-willed in their own ways and they frequently don't see the other's point of view, at least not right away.
Charley and Nova talking about Nova's trip to visit Charley in LA when they were teenagers was pretty telling of their entire relationship.
They both seemed to believe that the other was looking down on them and, living apart and under such vastly different circumstances for much of their lives has only widened that gap.
Nova: For some reason, I always feel small around you, still. For a long time, I felt that was on me. Then I came to feel it was on you, but both are wrong. Sometimes things are the way they are.
Charley: Every time I think we’re starting to understand, after all this time, it’s clear to me that we still don’t know each other as well as we think we do.
It was also telling that part of the reason Nova felt it was okay to explore a relationship with Remy was that she didn't realize that Remy and Charley had slept together.
But did she not want to know? Because Nova admitted she should have spoken to Charley about her feelings for Remy before embarking on that romance, but she chose not to.
So you’re of the school that it’s better to ask for forgiveness than permission. How’d that work out?Charley
Have these two both grown enough to finally not only work together to stop Old World Energy but not to keep falling into these same patterns of feeling like they don't measure up?
Only time will tell.
Check back for my review of Queen Sugar Season 4 Episode 11 and until then, you can watch Queen Sugar online here at TV Fanatic.
C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.