'Greenleaf' Season 5 Episode 2 Review: Tragedy brings the family closer and reveals some twisted intentions
Spoilers for Episode 2 'The Second Day'
In the wake of AJ Delajae's attempted suicide, the Greenleafs are left shaken and stirred. From planning a wedding, they were almost about to plan a funeral but luckily, Grace Greenleaf's (Merle Dandridge) son survived. However, this tragedy was able to open up older wounds just as much it helped bring the family together. On one hand, we have Lady Mae (Lynn Whitfield) and the Bishop (Keith David) finalizing a date for their wedding, and also a venue for their new church.
On the other hand, we have Grace trying to reason with AJ's father Noah about his involvement in their lives, while also chastising Charity Greenleaf (Desiree Ross) for yet again for making things about herself. It makes us wonder if the real threats are coming from external forces or if it is all within the family. Episode 2: 'The Second Day' only fuels that fire.
We meet the Greenleafs immediately after AJ is hospitalized. He survived the suicide attempt and is stable but needs to be on 72-hour monitoring for a psych evaluation. Meanwhile, his father Noah arrives to be with Grace with fair intent to stick around this time and see how everything unfolds — both AJ's recovery and their dynamics as a family.
This implied some rekindling of Grace and Noah's relationship, which is quite timely because Grace was just beginning to see Darius more than just a friend. With AJ refusing to see either of his parents, it gave both plenty of time to go about their own day, and while we don't see much of Noah after that point, Grace picks up her arc for revenge right away.
Grace is an unstoppable force of nature when scorned and Dandrige's portrayal of the character just keeps getting better with every season. Considering this is the final one, OWN is leaving no stone unturned to reinstate why Grace is the OG Greenleaf. From her giving the keys to Mavis' club to her parents to hunting down possible leads against the ambitious, conniving vulture Bob Whitmore — Grace truly is carrying the show on her back.
Even when she is telling her sister Charity off when she tried to empathize with her on AJ's tragedy by giving her a poem that Charity herself found solace in during Eden's loss — Grace is poised and restrained in a way not many would be after what she has recently been through. And it's remarkable how the writers make her actions worthy of her name.
Speaking of Charity, she gets into a tiff with Judee when she sees her office being repainted to fit its upcoming new occupant. Charity snaps, telling Judee that Phil's marrying her only because her father is forcing him to, and Judee handles that with unique dollops of snark and sass — all blended into one biblical proverb. It's one of those scenes where Charity's desperation and fall from grace (no pun intended!) are both sad and hilarious to witness, purely because of the way Judee snubs her.
The audience is very much on Charity's side, but we haven't quite started to hate Judee yet, not as much as we hate Karissa at least who thinks discussing her divorce in front of her teenage daughter will go totally unnoticed. Amidst this giant bundle of mess, the only constructive progression seems to be on Lady Mae and the Bishop's wedding plans as they set the date: Flag Day because clearly nothing else could be more significant or romantic.
Once they get the keys from Grace, the reflect on the potential for Mavis' Club to be turned into their new church to wash away all the "iniquity" and turn it into holy grounds they can call home again. Sure their plans might have been stalled by the recent tragedy but it looks like they aren't quite letting those external forces hinder their agenda for much longer.
This season has been touted to tie all the loose ends about how the Greenleafs will stand their ground when threatened by the likes of Bob and the H&H alliance, but with Grace just knowing how to squeeze the right kind of information out, it looks like a happy ending might be on the horizon after all. 'Greenleaf' airs on Tuesdays at 9 pm on OWN.