“We don’t recognize what each day in our lives actually means to us. If we had any sense of life and what our purpose is on this universe, we would, in fact, truly cherish the day.” Cicely Tyson
Cherish the Day is Ava DuVernay’s latest gift to us. It is a romantic anthology, chronicling the relationship of Gently James and Evan Fisher. Each episode focuses on a single day of their relationship and each day signifies a turning point in the relationship. The full season of eight episodes will span five years of their lives. Y’all ready for all this RealBlackLove? Let’s get into it.
The episode begins with a steamy scene that goes back and forth between Gently and her partner and Evan and his partner. They are basically living parallel lives at the moment – sleeping with other people and leaving the scene of the crime…seemingly with no additional feelings.
Luma Langston (played by the incomparable Cicely Tyson) is a legend, but she’s up in age and Gently is her caregiver. They discuss her meals for the day. Luma is a piece of work and she gives me all the grandma vibes. I could tell from the time she hit the screen that she would be one of my favorites.
Evan Fisher is on uncle duty and is escorting his niece to a lecture at the library. And that’s where Evan and Gently meet…
At the checkout counter, Gently is fighting Luma’s battle – late fees for books that Miss Luma done had for a year. Jesus. The fines are over $200 bucks. Gently is pleading with the librarian. She’s been in line forevah and it’s not going well. On a side note, the librarian that ain’t tryna hear Gently’s argument about how she’s not going to pay the fees is Charmaine Tyesha Brown from The Cosby Show and A Different World! Remember her? I used to love her. Ok…back to the recap. Evan peeps the showdown and intervenes. Gently mentions Miss Luma and Evan recognizes the name. Luma Langston?! His granddad used to watch all of her films. They bond over Luma. The librarian ain’t impressed. Gently tells her that Luma deserves to have her fines waived. We need to honor our elders (we shole do). Evan offers to pay the fines and Gently declines because it’s not about money, it’s about what’s right. Evan continues to diffuse the situation…and flirt with Gently. Gently just wants the librarian to do what’s right. And finally, she agrees…reluctantly. Yay for Miss Luma.
The city bus pulls up – with an ad for Queen Sugar on it. I cackled. I love Ava. Anyway, Gently steps off, walks to Miss Luma’s and delivers the new set of books she asked for. Imma need Miss Luma to not take a year to return these. I’m just sayin. Luma is impressed that Gently pulled this whole thing off – because she didn’t have faith in her. Well dayum, Miss Luma. LOL. Gently tells her that a guy offered to pay, but she declined. Luma tells her she should have let him (I heard that) and when a well-mannered man offers to help, let him.
Meanwhile, Evan heads to the office (on a Saturday) but work is not on his mind. He does a little social media research on Gently James. He finds her and then he goes through her pics…and likes them…and smiles…and DMs her. Yassss, Evan. Get whatchu want. Gently shows Luma pics of Evan. Luma says that Evan is not Gently’s type. Gently’s type is big and dumb. Luma plays no games. LOL. And now Gently is getting to know Evan via social media. He works for a tech company? Looks like he has money. Anyway. Luma tells Gently she got ADD when it comes to men. Gently doesn’t see a problem.
Evan delivers his niece back home. He gets a message from Gently and quickly heads to meet her at this cheesecake spot (I think this spot is THEE spot for cheesecake in LA. I know I wanted a slice). Gently orders Oreo and strawberry. Even needs to choose. And his choice will tell her a lot about him, but there’s no wrong answer. She’s just getting some information because that’s what she does. Evan ponders and goes with strawberry. Gently is happy…because Oreo is her favorite. And then they talk and Gently boils it all down to how they should strive to make other people happy…even in the smallest things. All we have is this moment. And life’s too short. Evan and Gently get to know each other in the car. We discover that Evan really isn’t happy with his job, but he is happy with the life that it provides and he wants to start his own company. Gently shares how awesome Luma is and how undervalued her talent was. Miss Luma’s fridge is leaking and Gently needs to get a flatbed to get her a new one. Evan offers to help. The flatbed (her daddy’s El Camino) is at Gently’s daddy’s house. Daddy and Uncle look like OGs. Unc asked what set Evan was from. Lawd. Bless it. Evan had offered to help Gently out, but he is having second thoughts about leaving his car (a Tesla) in the hood. But he got this new girl, so he gotta take his chances. Gently’s daddy said it would be cool. I ain’t gon lie. I was scared too. I had to say a prayer. Lawd, please let Evan’s Tesla be ok when he get back. AmenT.
They got the flatbed and head on out to Carson to get a used fridge. We learn that Evan went to Stanford and he has paid off his student loans (whew, Chile…a debt free man). And where did Gently go to school? She didn’t. She traveled the world after high school. But Evan knew that because he was stalking her IG. Gently basically lived like a nomad and lived life to the fullest. I am not mad.
They get there and the spot is closed. They will be back in one hour (reminds me of the spots where I’m from). So now these two crazy kids head to an arcade. Fun times. Their chemistry is off the charts. It’s cute. I like them. Evan kisses her on the cheek. They eat nachos in the flatbed. They talk about their first kiss and high school/teen years. Evan was a good boy. Gently barely went to class. Evan asks about her parents and it all goes left. Her dad died in the streets when she was 9. Ben took her in. And her mother…we still don’t know. She gets mad defensive. Why does Evan have so many questions? All we know is that Ben took care of her. Evan tells her he’s not judging. Gently went from 0-100 in 2.5 seconds. I got whiplash.
They never got the fridge because it was too large. The fridge lady seemed mad cool tho. Gently had a ‘tude the whole time they were there. Evan offers to pay for a new fridge for Miss Luma. Gently judges Evan and his money…while telling Evan that he’s judging her. Gently goes on a rant about control. She is a lot…and she’s kind of working my nerves at this point. She drives off without him. Leaving him stranded in Carson. SMH. *in my Tyra voice* I was rooting for y’all!
But here’s some good news. Evan’s car was still in tact when he got back. He sees Gently thru the window. She sees him too. It doesn’t matter. He drives off. And per the usual, Ava is ouchea leaving me wondering, hoping, wishing and praying for these fictitious people I just met. *Le sigh*
Whew! We made it through the first episode, and I am HOOKED. You hear me?
I already see that Gently is going to work my last nerB. I really needed sis to chill! She becomes way too defensive wayyyy too fast. I have so many questions. I need to know more about Miss Luma asaptually. What happened to Gently’s mother? She flew off the handle at the mention of her mother. What’s that about? And Ben…I need the story on that too. And how did Gently get the name Gently? I cannot stop thinking about all of these characters, which is exactly what should be happening after the first episode.
I am in love with this show for so many reasons. There’s history and wisdom from the elders. There’s a chance meeting at the LIBRARY (one of my favorite spots). We get to see Los Angeles in its truest form (the “real LA” as Ava puts it). There’s an amazing soundtrack (I still need the deets on where I might gather this soundtrack up). Oh…and we get to see Black people – all kinds of Black people. We are not monolithic and it’s a beautiful thing! The Black people on this show are beautiful – no bad wigs or bad lighting. The budding love (before Gently effed it up) is glorious. One of the best things is that my husband watched it with me and he loves it too – our new date night show. It is all good! I’m a fan. Ava done done it again.
I hope y’all tuned in. This show is worth watching.