#TeamIssa or #TeamLawrence?
Season 1 of HBO’s Insecure left everyone talking. But how did one of 2016’s biggest debates come to be in the first place? Not in the convo? We’ve got you covered.
Here’s your straightforward guide to all you need to know before Season 2 premieres on July 23. Don’t forget to follow us at #CASSIUSInsecure all season long and stay tuned to the space for more Insecure-related content.
It’s the morning of her 29th birthday, and being the only Black girl at We Got Y’all has her tired AF. Here, she raps in the mirror to quell her frustrations before receiving an “IMY” text from her ex-boo, Daniel. (Note: You’ll want to remember the name Daniel, because Daniel really fucks things up later.)
Meanwhile, Molly—Issa’s lawyer BFF who’s more successful in her career than she is in her romantic endeavors—was just turned down by a man who’s “just not looking for a relationship” right now. Molly bemoans this later that night (why is this always her luck?) when Issa takes her out to dinner to lift her spirits. Issa suggests Molly’s misfortune may be due to Molly’s p*ssy being broken (lol), and later raps about it in song (“Broken P*ssy”) during an open mic. Molly’s hella embarrassed when she’s outed as the subject in front of Jared—a cutie she met that evening and later dates throughout the show—putting her and Issa at odds for the rest of the episode. Important to note: things are also a bit tense between Issa and Lawrence, who’s not having the best of luck on the job front (Issa wishes he was doing better). Issa seems to allude to a breakup during this episode—and yes, she does text Daniel back: she misses him, too, and they end up kissing in a car later.
“Black women aren’t bitter, they’re just tired of being expected to settle for less.” – Issa, Episode 1
Issa, slightly regretful, shows up at Molly’s. She’s still pretty pissed about “Broken P*ssy,” but allows Issa to sleep over when she appears on her doorstep with a bag of chips, because that’s what friends are for.
Issa still hasn’t gone home, and Molly tries to convince Issa she’s lucky to have Lawrence by comparing Issa’s love life to her failed dating app forays. Meanwhile, Lawrence is worried. (Where the hell is Issa?) He ends up calling his friend, Chad, for some man-to-man advice. Later, Lawrence bumps into Issa at a convenience store when he notices she’s buying underwear. (Hol’up. Issa ain’t coming home!?) Lawrence bumps into and confides in his neighbor, Thug Yoda, while Issa finally confesses to Molly that she kissed Daniel.
“I don’t know how to change things, man.”
– Lawrence, Episode 2
Molly goes on a date during this episode, but it doesn’t end too well (turns out all he wanted was sex). She bumps into Jared later that night and realizes they could potentially be something (you know, despite the whole “Broken P*ssy” thing). Issa also realizes she still loves Lawrence and finally returns home, but that doesn’t mean shit’s peachy by any means. She makes this quite known later on in the season.
Things are awkward between Issa and Lawrence, especially in the bedroom.
A headhunter tells Lawrence it may be best for him to work an hourly job until better offers roll in, so he ends up getting a job at Best Buy, which he announces the news to Issa over homemade dinner.
Caucasity ensues at We Got Y’all when Issa walks in on her predominately white coworkers talking shit about her “Beach Day” idea, and wonders why she wasn’t included on an email chain regarding it. Her well-meaning colleague, Frieda, tells her she has it handled, but it’s too late: Issa already has a bad taste in her mouth. She vents to Lawrence about it, but isn’t so warm when Lawrence tries to tell her his news. She then flashes back to the day they bought the couch they’re sitting on (the couch is somewhat of a sentimental symbol of their relationship in this show). Lawrence reiterates he’s trying his best to make their relationship work and tells Issa he’s in it for the long haul. Issa decides she wants to work through things as well, so they carry their old couch to the curb together. New beginnings!
Over in Molly’s world, she’s excited because she was finally accepted into an elite dating app called “The League.” She’s bound to find a quality man now, right? She did introduce her friends to Jared, which went okay, until he mentioned he didn’t go to college. Upon being accepted to “The League,” she asks Jared if he’d be okay with being friends. “I just want to see what else is out there,” she explains to Issa. Jared didn’t even see it coming.
Things seem to be on the up-and-up when Issa and Lawrence go shopping for a new couch.
But his new job is off to a rocky start, and he mentions this to his friend, Tasha, who he runs into on break. “Keep hustling,” she tells him (Tasha supports Lawrence throughout the show and ends up coming on to him at one point, which he’s unreceptive to). The two end up eating together. Molly’s got another date from “The League,” but things fizzle quickly when she gets too expectant too soon (why wasn’t he texting her more!?). Daniel shows up at Issa’s job to apologize for kissing her the night of the open mic. Issa calls Molly to tell her about the exchange, noting that “he did look good” when it’s suggested Issa may still be into him. Frieda, who Issa’s warmed up to since the success of Beach Day, suggests she invite Daniel to career day to teach the kids about the music biz. During career day, Daniel discloses Issa’s secret music history to the kids, which leads them finding out about “Broken P*ssy.”
“I’ve always been your ‘what if’ guy.”
– “Mirror” Daniel, Episode 4
Anxious about “Broken P*ssy” being out in the open (and all over the internet), Issa frantically shows the video to Lawrence.
Lawrence (whose friend, Chad, presses him about “getting his shit together” during the episode) assures Issa everything will be okay. The kids will forget about it right? Nope. Everything is not okay, which is why Issa stops by Molly’s job to see if she can help get the video taken down. Speaking of Molly, she has another boo. His name is Chris (played by Jidenna), and she coerces him into joining her as a date for a friend’s engagement party. Chris, after originally suggesting “playing it by ear,” shows up to the party and introduces himself as Molly’s new boyfriend. Molly, of course, is ecstatic—until Chris later reveals his appearance was all for show. “I just got the sense that you really needed a win.” Womp.
“We barely even know each other and you’re talking about me leaving clothes at your spot, making plans six months in advance.” – Chris, Episode 5
So now Molly is drunk and on the doorstep of Jared’s apartment. He allows her to stay over and sober up, but by now he’s ’bout tired of her wishy washy BS. While all this is happening, Issa is at a music studio for a session with Daniel and his friends. An intimate conversation ensues between the two of them after everyone else leaves, and then… sex.
Issa’s freaking out and decides not to tell Lawrence she cheated on him with Daniel.
Lawrence, keeping his promise, found someone who was able to remove “Broken P*ssy” from the interwebs. Realizing what Lawrence would go through for her, Issa cries and tells him she loves him. As the episode title implies, she’s guilty—as fuck.
Molly decides she’s done with “The League” and calls Issa to let her know she’s back with Jared (though things later get awkward when he reveals he once hooked up with a guy). Lawrence and Issa go out for a date night that ends at a jewelry shop—he wants to shop for a ring! But Issa, remembering what happened with Daniel, becomes overwhelmed and leaves the store.
“Why can’t black men explore their sexuality without being labeled gay or bi or whatever?” – Issa, Episode 6
Molly, unsure of how to feel regarding what Jared revealed to her, decides to end things with him once and for all. Issa also reveals to Molly that she slept with Daniel. Molly’s advice: Don’t tell Lawrence, and “just move on.” All is well on the surface (Lawrence and Issa have passionate sex that night), until Lawrence stumbles over Issa’s cell on his way to the bathroom in the middle of the night. There’s a text from Daniel: “So we really not talking?” Lawrence knows something’s up.
It’s the day of Issa’s We Got Y’all fundraiser, and she really wants things to go well.
Molly runs into an old friend at work, who gushes about how seeing a therapist has really turned her life around. During the fundraiser, Molly mentions this to Issa, who suggests a seeing a therapist may be a good idea for Molly. Defensive and offended, Molly doesn’t take the advice well.
Lawrence nails a job interview and Issa is ecstatic, though, for a split second, Lawrence considers turning it down to focus on developing his own app (he ends up taking the job). But back to the fundraiser: Daniel unexpectedly shows up, and Lawrence is on notice. Issa and Daniel have a conversation off to the side, during which Issa reduces Daniel to “an itch she needed to scratch” (ouch), prompting him to leave. While Molly does all she can to help Issa get Daniel off the scene before trouble ensues, Lawrence and Daniel cross paths, and Lawrence’s hunch is confirmed. Molly and Issa get into a blowup over Molly’s negative attitude toward men. Molly tells Issa she doesn’t deserve Lawrence, and Issa implies Molly’s just mad because Issa actually has a man (damn).
“You act like finding someone is some sort of fairy tale. It’s not.” – Issa, Episode 7
Molly tries one last time to work things out with Jared, but this time he shuts the door in her face—literally. At the end of the night, Issa walks into her and Lawrence’s apartment ready to celebrate the fundraiser’s success, only to be met with the one gut-wrenching question she feared being asked: Who’s Daniel? Her silence says all Lawrence needs to know. Lawrence, livid and hurt, grabs his keys and storms out of the apartment. It’s undoubtedly the most intense scene of the season.
“You were just an itch I needed to scratch.”
– Issa, Episode 7
Issa hasn’t heard from Lawrence in three days.
Issa tries to buffer the situation by delivering toiletries to his job, but Lawrence has already made up his mind: he’s done. Later, Issa goes on a trip to Malibu for their friend Kelli’s birthday, but remember—shit’s still tense between Issa and Molly, so the whole trip is awkward.
“So, new Molly sabotages her life on purpose.”
– Tiffany, Episode 8
Lawrence has a night out of his own and rounds up the squad for the strip club. At the strip club, he has the opportunity to hook up with a dancer in a private room, but it’s clear she’s just doing it for the cash. He talks to Issa on the phone and tells her he misses her—which leads us to believe reconciliation is imminent—but then he hooks up with Tasha (oop!). Issa doesn’t realize how done Lawrence truly is until she makes up with Molly and Molly agrees to drive Issa home to get her man. But Issa’s met with the hard truth when she walks in to an empty home void of Lawrence’s belongings. Well, aside from the lone Best Buy polo he left hanging in the closet.
“I miss you.”
– Lawrence, Episode 8
Words | Stephanie Long @sreneelong
Creative Direction | Brandon Douglas @realbrandouglas & Ben Iturralde @beniturralde
Illustrations | Mariano Henestrosa @marianohenestrosa