“Black-ish” Addresses Marital Issues

"How did we get here?"

Each of the last three episodes of “Black-ish” has been extremely tough and uncomfortable to watch. If you are not caught up on the current episode, please do so; NOW! No matter how you choose to watch it, DVR list, ONDemand, your Hulu acount, your friend’s Hulu account (Hey Allison! lol) or the ABC app; just do so before reading the next few paragraphs. The episodes I am speaking writing about are listed respectively:

Episode 20: Fifty-Three Percent
Episode 21: Blue Valentine
Episode 22: Collateral Damage

OK! BYE! Do not proceed until you are done watching the aforementioned.


For those who are caught up on the show, “How did we get here?” is what Andre (Dre) and Rainbow (Bow) asked one another before parting ways and after agreeing that more than a separation from one another is needed. Well, guess what? After watching last night’s episode, I am posing the same question! How DID we get here? I also want to make sure my marriage is never in the place that Bow’s and Dre’s marriage is. I wonder if the events that occurred the past few episodes is how the demise of a marriage begins? What started out as a small misunderstanding seems to have erupted into a huge, active volcano and the lava being spewed is full of personal attacks, shade, eye rolls and exasperated sighs. HOW DID WE GET HERE?! A strong marriage that has lasted 18 years (90 episodes and 4 tv years) has crumbled in a matter of 3 weeks (3 episodes and 3 tv weeks). HOW DID WE GET HERE? Was this foreshadowed at some point in previous episodes and I missed it? I get that both Dre and Bow have their quirks, but I did not see this coming! “Black-ish” has dealt with dark topics in the past such as police brutality, slavery and postpartum depression, but a few jokes were always inserted to lighten the mood. Perhaps these episodes will be a conversation starter for married couples. Maybe the episodes will serve as a learning tool and allow them to ask one another “How do we not go there?” or “Do you feel there is something I could be doing to allow this marriage to be smoother?” or simply ask “Are you happy?” and elaborate from there.

It seems all of this confusion began when Bow began having doubts and fears about Baby Devonte’s developmental delays. As a mother I fully understand being concerned about your child not hitting the milestones that doctors or specialist feel they should be hitting at a specific time; I would be fearful as well. But, I wonder if we would be “here” if Bow had expressed her concerns to Dre instead of internalizing them. Lack of effective communication has definitely been an issue the past few episodes. Why didn’t Bow tell Dre she went back to work? Why the heck are Dre’s parents still living in the house? When he leaves to live at the apartment during Bow’s days with the kids, shouldn’t his parents leave too? Why couldn’t Bow just eat the darn Ramen Noodles!?!? Ugh!

Then there is the issue of change. It seems as though Bow and Dre no longer know one another. Could it be that they have been so focused on being great parents to their children, that they forgot how to be great partners to one another? I think what shocks me the most is the speed at which they got to this point. It was so unexpected. The children’s reaction to their argument at their son Jr’s graduation party was gut wrenching! Even if they work this out, the children will never forget what they witnessed. It was definitely stressful and sad to watch as a viewer.

Overall the writing of the last three episodes has been impeccable; they are touching people’s emotions. The topic is relatable and has likely triggered many married couples and shown another side of marriage to those who someday anticipate it. The season finale is scheduled to air next Tuesday. The title of the episode is “Dream House”. Is that title meant to be facetious? Will Bow and Dre work things out? What if all of this was a dream? *gasp* I have so many questions! Hurry up and get here Tuesday!


  1. As a dedicated viewer of this show, I’m disappointed and saddened by this storyline. I know what they are doing they is real but I just need them to survive this and not just for TV purposes.


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