When I saw the trailer for season three of “Star,” let’s just say I was tad bit excited. In the trailer Star Davis (Jude Demorest), the show’s namesake, sports a pregnancy belly while rapping in a Catholic-themed music video about her “immaculate” pregnancy. When the Season 3 premiere came out on Sept. 26, I eagerly turned on the TV wondering: Who was the father of Star’s baby?
That is a question that will just have to wait for later in the season. The premiere released just three months after Season 2’s finale and has already cleared up some of the many cliffhangers audiences were left with. To start, Season 2 ended with Carlotta Brown (Queen Latifah) and her sister, Cassie Brown (Brandy Norwoo), facing down in a gunfight after Carlotta finds out Cassie ordered the shooting that killed Jahil Rivera (Benjamin Bratt). Thankfully, as the Season 3 premiere shows, the rigid standoff is temporarily ended when the tussling sisters accidentally shoot their mother. Their mother, Christine Brown (Patti LaBelle), comes out fine, but the tension between the Brown sisters is far from over.
Throughout the premiere, Carlotta and Cassie continue to butt heads. Fed up with her daughters fighting, their mother yells at them to fix their issues. Cassie attempts to apologize to her sister and says she intended the bullet for Andy (Elijah Kelley), who stole some of her money. The sincerity in Cassie’s voice when she says she “doesn’t want to go to war” with her sister is one of the first signs of real vulnerability she’s shown so far.
The two seem to be connecting at first, but when Cassie exclaims she had to order the hit on Andy because of what “people think of [her],” Carlotta isn’t having it. After this failed reconciliation, the divide between the Brown sisters only feels sharper. Later in the episode Cassie is even seen plotting with Carlotta’s former flame and music A&R Maurice Jetter (Lance Gross) on how to show up her sister. A serious confrontation between the two is definitely coming later in the season, and it’s almost sure to be violent.
The life of singer Noah Brooks (Luke James) also hung in the balance after the “Star” Season 2 finale. Brooks, who struggled with addiction and alcoholism, stood on the roof of a building ready to jump. Thankfully the artist is alive and well in the Season 3 premiere. In a flashback it’s revealed that Brooks is talked down by his father and gets off the roof.
Throughout the episode, audiences also learn Brooks actually went to rehab and feels in debt to Star, whose stern words about his addiction got through to him. However, it’s not all sunshine and roses for Brooks. Toward the end of the premiere he confides in Miss Bruce (Miss Lawrence), who also deals with addiction, about his pain. Miss Bruce offers to work as sort of a sponsor for Brooks, but his journey with sobriety is only just beginning.
The trajectory of Take 3’s Alex Crane (Ryan Destiny), Simone (Brittany O’Grady) and, of course, Star, ended last season hanging on some serious cliffhangers too. In Season 2, Crane had just boarded a red-eye flight to New York after ex-boyfriend Derek (Quincy Brown) rejected her. Derek was left to frantically watch the news as it headlines “plane crashes mid-flight from Atlanta.”
I am relieved to say Crane starts “Star” Season 3 alive and well, at least physically. She’s haunted with PTSD as she relives multiple flashbacks of the plane crash, although she finds some comfort in Derek, who she is dating again. Surely, working through the side-effects of the crash is going to be a season-long effort.
Simone left Season 2 getting on a plane as well, but this one was bound for the Dominican Republic. Her husband and fellow singer Angel Rivera (Evan Ross) had just been deported there. Distraught, Simone had decided to leave Atlanta to be with him in the DR. She has returned to Atlanta in the Season 3 premiere and reveals her time with Angel hasn’t been the best. Simone even confides to Carlotta that she’s lonely in the DR and when seen talking to Angel, she’s distant. Viewers really see just how unhappy Simone has been in her marriage when Alex picks her up at an unknown woman’s house after a night out. This mystery woman turns out to be someone very important, but I’ll get to that later.
And then, there’s Star. Season 2 ended with her getting a spot in the Sound House tour, but as a solo artist. After Jetter released her diss track, “There For You,” without Star’s consent, an enraged Crane choked Star on stage. This led to Take 3 getting dropped from the tour and replaced with a solo Star.
Both Crane and Simone were furious, and that anger has carried over into Season 3, where both aren’t on speaking terms with Star. The trio are seen together when the group reunites for the first time in three months, but only for an appearance on a talk show. At the end of the talk Simone drops a bomb: this is their last meeting as Take 3. Carlotta of course vows to keep them together as she is ever-loyal to her girls.
Even more stress comes when its revealed that Midtown Sound, the record label Take 3 is signed under and Carlotta runs, has been sold to a dashing man named Mateo Ferrera (William Levy). Ferrera wants to shut down the label and focus on other endeavors, but gives Carlotta one chance to change his mind before he announces his plans to his investors. Carlotta’s plan to wow him with the Sound House tour is then ruined when headlining singer Joyce Sheree (Teyana Taylor), high and angry at Star, pulls a gun at an appearance. The tour is canceled, and Carlotta has forlornly resigned herself to the end of not only Midtown Sound, but Take 3 as well.
But Take 3 hasn’t given up. Star pleads with Crane and Simone to help save Midtown Sound, if not for her then for Carlotta. The triumvirate head to Ferarra’s gala, which he is hosting to inform investors about his plans for the music-less Midtown Sound, renamed Galaxy Media. Carlotta also turns up at the gala and is full of a renewed dedication to fight for her girls and her company.
In an uncoordinated strike, Carlotta corners Fererra and Take 3 performs “My Type” dressed stunningly in blunt-cut wigs and white clothing. The audience of investors cheers wildly and when the song finishes, Carlotta takes the stage. Ever the performer, she announces the death of Midtown Sound and the beginning of Gravity Records. Forced to go along, Ferrera takes the stage and states how excited he and his wife are to start Gravity Media and Gravity Records. He then brings up his wife Nina (Camila Banus), who is none other than the mystery woman Simone spent the night with.
After the gala, Carlotta and the girls sit down for a talk. They all commit to sticking together no matter what because that’s what family does. Finally on speaking terms with Crane and Simone again, Star takes this time to confess her pregnancy, albeit sans the name of the father.
All in all, the Season 3 premiere of “Star” put some complex and exciting storylines into play. I can’t wait to see where the show goes as the season progresses. While they are united for now, who knows what’s coming next for Carlotta and Take 3 as they try and take the music scene by storm?