(WARNING: Spoilers for this week’s Power Book II: Ghost episode will be found below.)
Tariq is unable, for what feels like the umpteenth time, to wriggle free from the drug game as his future goals and freedom are dependent on his participation in it. In the season three premiere of Power Book II: Ghost, Tariq is only able to enjoy a few moments of a somewhat normal life before his world is blown up once again. Noma, the menacing leader of a global empire who also happened to be the boss and fiancée to the now-slain Mecca, corners Tariq, Cane, and Brayden with the goal of seeking unrelenting revenge for Mecca’s death. Tariq, knowing his involvement in it, is left to do whatever he can to make her happy and save his own life and that means moving and selling Mecca’s massive supply of drugs. Thankfully, he has help from Cane, Brayden, and Effie.
In the second episode of the season, titled “Need Vs. Greed,” the group’s plan to distribute the product to sell in as many different areas is in motion, but not without a few initial disagreement. Tariq and Brayden can’t seem to agree where to sell the drugs with Brayden suggesting that sell to the snobby employees at the Weston family company, something Tariq is extremely against. This moment is one of many that plays into the episodes theme of “need vs. greed.” Are decisions made to fulfill a critical need or to indulge in a desire? What are the consequences of doing or not doing something? It’s clear that Tariq and Brayden generally stand on opposite ends of this concept, but because their lives are at risk with Noma, their short-term needs are more aligned which help them to come to an agreement on how to move forward in the episode.
Elsewhere, Effie tries to find her footing on “need vs. greed” while Lorenzo challenges Cane to take the top spot, and to his surprise, Cane does just that. Lauren has a big decision to make, but her choice may not be needed because Jenny Sullivan, Cooper Saxe, and Blanca Rodriguez are building quite the case against them.
Here are some of the biggest takeaways that we have after season three’s second episode, “Need Vs. Greed”:
Tariq & Brayden Are The Epitome Of Need Vs. Greed
Tariq and Brayden are best friends, there’s no doubt about that. They’ve had great moments together and they’ve had sour ones too. Though they have plenty of similarities, Tariq and Brayden both have big differences that play into the “need vs. greed” theme of this week’s episode. As the show presented it, Tariq needed to sell drugs to fund his mother’s case to get her out of prison. He need to continue doing it to stay on Monet’s good side, and now he needs to do it to avoid being killed by Noma. Sure, Brayden also needs to sell the drugs now in order to not be killed by Noma, but from the very start, Brayden’s participation in the game was by choice. He joined after getting a thrill from the moment and figuring out that he was kind of good at it. So it’s understandable why Brayden is nonchalant in his ask to move some of Mecca’s drugs within the Weston family office and it’s understandable why Tariq is so against it. When Brayden took the fall in Tariq’s drug case, it resulted with him getting a six-figure job while it would’ve put Tariq in jail if he was convicted. The risk is higher for Tariq which makes fulfilling his needs and nothing more, all that more important. Brayden’s greed could help them reach new levels, but it could also hurt them a lot — especially when it involves shaking hands with Rashad Tate.
Lorenzo Played With Fire, But Couldn’t Handle The Burns
You think that a murderer like Lorenzo — whether it be accidental or not — would do a better job of not bringing attention to himself. Throughout “Need Vs. Greed,” he taunts and degrades Cane by citing the numerous reasons he can’t trust. Lorenzo then suggests that the only way Cane can gain his trust back to maybe become the one to take on the family drug empiure is to find Zeke’s killer, but the gag is Lorenezo killed Zeke. It was this moment that we truly see that Lorenzo has no desire to pass the torch to Cane, but we also see how greatly Lorenzo underestimates Cane. Sure, Cane has messed up numerous times over the course of Power Book II: Ghost and sure Cane and Lorenzo may not see eye-to-eye, but this moment showed how much Cane favored all his other children above Cane. Nonetheless, a handful of scenes later, Cane confronts Lorenzo by calling him Zeke’s killer, and though Lorenzo tries to deny it, Cane successfully gets Lorenzo to admit it. Lorenzo played with fire, but couldn’t handle the burns and now he’s under Cane’s blackmail-driven command and who knows where that will lead him to. If Lorenzo was smart, he would’ve done everything in his power (no pun intended) to keep the attention and eyes off him.
Cane Is Just Getting Started
This is the moment that Cane has been waiting for since the first season of Power Book II: Ghost. He played by the rules and broke them in hopes of claiming the next-in-line crown for the family drug organization. He was loyal in some moments and deceitful in others, and yet it didn’t work out in his favor… until now. Following Lorenzo’s direct orders, Cane figures out who murdered Zeke — that being Lorenzo — and uses this discovery to blackmail his dad into moving some of the product that Noma has directed him, Tariq, Cane, and Brayden to distribute. Cane has had several master plans in his attempt to put himself in position to takeover the family business, and while most of them more or less failed prior to this episode, it didn’t stop him from coming up with a new one and trying again. At long last, he’s got everyone right where he wants there, and now, it’s time begin the next phase. Cane is just getting started, and while we’ll have to see how long this lasts, we know he’ll make the most of it in the meantime.
Effie Needs To Be Greedy
Effie is trying to find her footing in this new dynamic between her Tariq, Brayden, and Cane. She doesn’t seem as greedy as Brayden, but she is a bit more needy than Tariq as she needs any and all the drug money she can get in order to pay her school fees at Stansfield. We’ve known Effie to have an all-business-no-play approach, so it’s no surprise that we see her roll her eyes at Tariq and Brayden’s discussions about their plans “blowing up” and the luxury cars they’ll purchase with the money they. This has never been a come-up to Effie, it’s damn near life or death for her. Unlike Tariq and Brayden, if all else fails, there’s not much she can lean on. Brayden has his extremely rich family and Tariq could look to Monet for help. With Effie, her resources are the thinnest out of the group. So when we see her contemplate the re-launch of Course Correct behind Tariq and Brayden’s back, you can kind of understand it. Or when we see her pressure Brayden into keeping quiet about their attempt to kill Lauren, which we know failed, you can also understand it. While this episode leaves us to contemplate need vs. greed, Ellie finds herself on both sides. Her greed is nearly synonymous with her needs and it protects her from damage that no other character will feel if things go wrong. With all that being said, Effie needs to be greedy, and with the way things are looking just two episodes in, it seems like it’s not if things will go wrong, but when.
New episodes of ‘Power Book II: Ghost’ are available on the STARZ app on Fridays at 12:00 am EST and on the STARZ TV channel at 8:00 pm EST.