Netflix: Nappily Ever After Review
The main character, Violet Jones, is the perfect picture of perfection. She has the career. She has the GUY. And most importantly, to her, she has THE LOOK.
Her look is her Everything! She wakes up before her boyfriend to make her face up. Her hair was drenched and she panicked as if life itself ended. Her look determined her destiny, more specifically her hair.
Violet was under the impression that her hair was the main ingredient for attracting goodness. Why else would a person put so much emphasis on their hair? It could be due to her mother instillation at a young age of the importance of appearances. The movie flashed back to a time when Violet jumped in the water as a young girl and was teased by the other children about her frizzy wet hair. Her mother publicly berated her and instantly took her home. This pivotal moment in her life transitioned to her hair becoming a defense mechanism.
All in all life was great for Violent and today was the day she believed her handsome boyfriend Clint was going to pop the question. Going through a lot to get perfect he feel short of her expectations and purchased her a dog. Infuriated she confronted him and then ended the relationship after he unveiled how superficial she was. This was the first time perfect was not working in her favor.
Her career was even vain as she was a marketing executive for beauty centered companies. She felt unfulfilled on her career, broken up from her dream guy and the first thing she chose to change was her hair color.
That night she took her new hairdo and her closest friends for a night on the town. Later she met this handsome face, went home with him only to suddenly leave and experience the moment that would change her life forever.
In her drunken stupor she grabbed some clippers and …
The night she did this was liberating but her sober self was devastated. Her mother thought she lost her mind and her boss thought it was some sort of a nervous breakdown.
Zoe was a sassy adolescent that was being raised by her single father, Will. Will was the owner of a beauty shop Violet frequented the day her hair was drenched. Violet and Zoe did not get off on a good start. Violet attacked the appearance of her natural hair and Zoe swiftly got her revenge.
Time passed and Violent and Zoe meet again at a store, except this time Violet caught Zoe stealing. Violet approached Will attacking him for Zoe’s behavior without knowing the situation. After Will explained the situation of her mother and his long hours at the shop; Violet started making friends with Zoe. I believe Violet was driven to Zoe’s confidence. Zoe was not afraid to be herself and Violet was terrified of getting to know herself.
At this point Violent has grown close to Will and Zoe. Will and she started a romantic relationship with the absence of sex. Will was accepting of that and loved Violet genuinely, however, Violet had some more growing to do as she was still pretty shallow. She thought that shaving her hair solved the problem but later learned it is the change you make within that matters.
Will and her break-up and she finds herself alone again. This time around she started shaving away her insecurities. She took a risk on her job and when it did not pan out she liberated herself with a solo dance that Clint walked in on.
Instantly, she took Clint back and this time Clint proposed. Turns out Clint was about appearances too but Violet was finally feeling comfortable in your skin and learned the most important relationship is with herself.
I would first like to say…
This movie was about a relationship with self!
I read a lot of opinions and lots of people put emphasis on Violet’s relationship with Clint and Will. It was not about that. The message was you can’t love someone wholeheartedly if you don’t genuinely love yourself. Violet was not comfortable in her own skin and was being the person she thought she should be. Her journey to self-care had just begun and she was more intrigued with that.
Of course the ideology of Black hair was the focus of the movie. The ironic thing is African Americans are not the only race that stereotype Black hair. There has been countless times women of other races have asked to touch my hair and it always made me feel like a pet.
Where does this hair stereotype stem from?
Simple Answer: Past Generations.
I did not do much research but in my opinion the black hair stereotype is similar to colorism. The straightening of hair, to me, is similar to the brown paper bag test (if you not familiar with please google to learn about thatJ). The straighter the hair the more you were accepted. The relaxer was the key to getting her hair to stay straight as long as possible and annihilate any curls within 3-4 weeks by getting a touch up.
To be honest, growing up I remember my neck being burned by hot combs and my scalp burning from the “creamy crack”. Beauty definitely was pain. It had to be straight or I would nappy-headed. These were things said to me growing up similar to Violet. I’m sure the adults that said that to me were told that as a kid and those adults were told that as a kid and so on…
Overtime these negative sayings traveled from generation to generation and it became a part of Black’s culture. Violet thought nothing about criticizing Zoe’s hair while meeting her for the first time. She was only mirroring how she was raised so she thought it was alright to approach a child that way. The only way these patterns can be broken is if we break them.
My transition to natural was not my decision at all. My dermatologist proposed I go natural so the eczema in my scalp would improve. Also, I often had migraines after getting my relaxer. Even though my scalp was full of sores and my migraines worsened, it took me a year to make up my mind. When I first transitioned I heard a lot of “what happened to your hair?” I could have walked in a room wearing a Vera Wang gown and crystal slippers with a poodle on my shoulder and my family would still ask “what is going on with your hair?”
I’d never felt so insecure and I just wore weave all of the time. I do not see anything wrong with weave. I believe it should be worn because you want to and not because you feel you need to. Same with a relaxer, my weave wearing became my identity and I even had a saying “Hair is everything!” How is the hair on my head Everything?
Like Violet, I learned to embrace my Natural hair. I indulged in You Tube videos on how to care for my hair and re-train it to its natural curl pattern.
But through all the research I learned to embrace my hair and myself. Now I don’t allow people to pet me and I tell me family to cut it with the hair comments.
This movie hit home for me and I was not looking for a happy ending for Violet and Clint or Violet and Will, I was waiting to see if Violet would be happily ever after with herself.
This movie is definitely a Must-See!
If you’ve seen it, what are your thoughts? Could you relate to Violet’s insecurities?