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Betty Returns for Another Cathartic, Vibes-Filled Season | TV/Streaming

Set during the final months of the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, these six new episodes of “Betty” position these young women as not just subjects shaped by their struggles with their families, or their resentment of the patriarchy—recurring issues in the series’ first season. Instead, the five young women at the heart of this story are now a little bit older and a little bit wiser, and the respect they’ve been asking for from their peers, their parents, and other adults actually arrives. What happens then? How do they navigate situations in which they actually have more power than they anticipated—and how do they navigate situations in which they actually don’t? The narrow expectations of heteronormativity, the potentially imbalanced power dynamics of sex work, the question of unfaithfulness that can arise from polyamory. Are these young women ready for all, or any, of that?

Over episodes written by Moselle herself, returning season one writers Moshe Kasher and Naima Ramos-Chapman, actress Rachelle Vinberg (who plays Camille on the series), and a few new additions to the writers’ room, including documentary filmmaker Sabaah Folayan (of 2017’s Whose Streets?”), the second season of “Betty” picks up some months after the events of season one. The murder of Breonna Taylor hangs over these skateboarders, many of whom are Black, biracial, Latinx, or other POC. The COVID-19 pandemic is already in full effect, and all the skateboarders are dealing with new rules, restrictions, and regulations throughout New York City. Meaningful connections feel increasingly difficult to forge or to maintain.


Janay (Dede Lovelace), who totally cut off ties with her friend and vlogging creative partner who was accused of sexual abuse in season one, is cramped at home once her cousin Jzabel (chef Roblé Ali) takes over the apartment where she lives with her father to keep cooking meals for the elderly around the city. The community center where Jzabel normally cooks has been shut down because of COVID-19, and although he’s hoping for a business assistance loan, he has to make do on his own until then. Former rich girl Indigo (Ajani Russell), who took thousands of dollars from her wealthy mother Jeanne (Eisa Davis) last season to help bail some of the skateboarders out of jail, is working as a front-line worker at a grocery store and hoping to pay her mother back incrementally. She’s also still crashing with the group’s best skateboarder, Camille (Vinberg), who has been making increasingly popular skating videos with her male friend Tai (Lil’ Dre).


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