“The man who killed James St. Patrick is (long pause) Tommy Egan,” declares Naturi Naughton’s Tasha St. Patrick to a dubious courtroom just before one more twist ended the debut of Power Book II: Ghost today.
Having premiered early this morning on the Starz App and just now on the premium cabler itself, the first spinoff in the Courtney Kemp created franchise was part throwback to mother show Power itself and a whole lot of leap into the future, literally and figuratively. With Michael Rainey Jr’s Tariq St. Patrick trying to get his mother out of jail for the murder of his father that she did not commit, Cliff “Method Man” Smith’s high-flying defense lawyer Davis Maclean and Mary J. Blige’s Queenpin Monet are finally introduced into the Powerverse.
As actual patricide shooter Tariq juggles springing Tasha, his studies at an Ivy League college and securing his inheritance, he still has to come up with another $450,000 for Maclean to defend his remaining parent in what the younger St. Patrick terms “the biggest case of your career.” As well as getting into high credit classes via Albert Camus and tutoring a school basketball star, that means looking for a payday in the family business – AKA: the son is transforming into the father, but with a very different type of edge.
“There’s a consistent doubt in our abilities that doesn’t change as you get more success,” Kemp notes of those who doubt that seasoned pro Rainey could handle being one of the leads of Ghost at 19-years old. “It remains,” she adds of the incessant discrimination against African-Americans, both inside and outside of the entertainment industry in 2020. “The idea, again, just bears repeating, we have to be twice as good to be looked at half as well.”
Just days after the Lionsgate-owned Starz moved up the Tommy Egan (Joseph Sikora) spotlighting Power Book IV: Force in the franchise cue, I spoke with a hunkered down Kemp about Ghost’s Anthony Hemingway directed opener, which she penned, and the future. Developing dirty cop drama Dirty Thirty for HBO as well as rolling out more and more Power series, the erudite EP also discussed premiering during the coronavirus pandemic and what a second season of Ghost could bring. Additionally, Kemp delved into freedom and politics in this year of election, the importance of Tariq’s school syllabus and shifts in the industry and the culture.