Spike Lee is the monarch of creatively depicting events happening in the present and intertwining it with Black History. His updated version of the Netflix series “She Gotta Have it” does not fall short of his distinctive touch. If you did not know, this Netflix series is Spike Lee’s re-make of the film “She Gotta Have It” that debuted in 1986.
I may be a little late to the game as the series debuted on November 23, 2017 but I was intrigued by the first episode of the main character, Nola Darling, introducing us to her three lovers. She was unapologetic about her sexuality and anything else for that matter.
Her first lover was a guy named Greer who was handsome, egoistic but sexy. Her second lover was a comedic, loyal and colorful young guy Mars. Jamie, her last lover, was a married but separated established businessman that Nola characterized as a “complicated” situation. And if you did not think she was juggling a lot of relationships she also managed to maintain her strong bond with her family and close friends. Nola managed to handle these relationships with ease until at a time she decided to take a “man-break” from her “loving bed” and rediscover a relationship with a past female lover.
The term “loving bed” was repeated several times during the series. I felt like this was purposeful and there was some type of metaphorical meaning to it that I could not figure out. Her bed was ironically called the “loving bed” when in fact Nola only acknowledges her lustful desires. All of her relationships fueled different parts of her soul and each person loved her differently. The more they wanted to bond with her; the more she detached herself. Although Nola presented herself as a strong black woman she hid behind a lot of insecurities. In a way she did not care what others thought and then at times she only cared about others thought.
Nola made it clear to her men that she was not monogamous, but her lovers were still attempting to crack her code . In the midst of Nola’s crazy relationships, the audience gets to learn her viewpoints and how proud and knowledgeable she is of her culture.
The show also touch subjects like U.S. minorities heartbreak when Trump won the Presidency, illegal transplants, the origin of negative connotations of women (i.e. slut, ho) and more. Also, the soundtracks in the series are awesome and most music titles are actually announced throughout the series.
When I first started watching this I suspected “She’s Gotta Have It” referred to sex. However, the more I watched the series the more I saw that she not only Gotta have an orgasm; but she Gotta have respect, she Gotta have the freedom of self-expression, she Gotta have success, and she Gotta have self-reliance. In the midst of it all she discovered what she needed was to embody self-love.
I loved the idea of Nola and identified with her. She constantly fought to stay out of the box people were trying to place her in. Her relationships were accessories to her well dressed life and she stood firm to keep it that way. She was only committed to her work as her attention span veered often when it came to people. Her nonchalant and disregard of the rules caused her to hurt some of her friends yet they stayed friends with her despite the hurt. This was just how magnetic Nola’s personality was.
I anticipated this series involving her falling for one guy more than the other but that never happened. She so happened to fall for a past female lover, Opal, that decided it was best for her to keep her distance away from Nola.
I personally thought her lover Mars would win Nola’s heart as he was sincere and genuinely wanted to build a life with Nola. He was not rich but he was willing to offer all he had to her. He too lost in the game of love and war as Nola decided she did not need any of her lovers to reach her goals. Towards the end of the series Nola is led to a road of self-discovery that reveals in a way she did depend on her lovers to fill some voids in her life. She releases herself from that dependency that led to her freedom and a stronger love for herself.
The last episode did take an unusual turn, however, it seemed to work out for Nola. I am not quite sure how realistic the ending was as I would imagine three men would not stick around for hours hanging out with the knowledge of sleeping with the same woman. I am not sure the male ego could handle such a setting. I could be wrong on this, but I just cannot see it. All in all I loved this series and I could find myself watching Season 1 again and again.
Have you seen “She’s Gotta Have it”? If so, please share your thoughts below.