Love Life (2020–…): Season 2, Episode 4 - Episode #2.4 - full transcript

[upbeat music]

♪ ♪

- Excuse me.

- Hi, yeah.

- Uh, do you have any copies
of a book called "Exit West"?

- [laughs]

I'm sorry.
I don't work here, actually.

- Oh. Wow, um, I'm sorry.

It's just, I saw you
putting books on the table,

so I assumed...

- Yeah--no,
that's a fair assumption.

Um, actually, I have a special
investment in this book

because I edited it.

It got an unfair review
from "New York Times."

I'm just trying to make sure
it gets some love.

But it's a great book.
I guarantee it.

- Okay.

- You'll like it,
or your money back,

no questions asked.

- [laughs]

- As a writer myself, I'm sure
they appreciate your advocacy.

- Oh, really?
Anything I might have read?

- I'm a playwright.

- Okay.
Anything I might have seen?

- I don't know.

Are you into the Houston
independent theater scene?

- [laughs] Uh...
- Yeah. [laughs]

- Well, I'm sure
it's only a matter of time.

- It's Ola, by the way.

- Marcus.
Nice to meet you.

- Nice to meet you.

- So I should probably get
out of here before they see me

moving their books around,
but...I don't know.

Maybe we could grab
a drink sometime?

- Uh, you know, to be honest,

you're kind of catching me
at a bad time.

I leave town on Sunday

to go to an artist residency
in Vermont.

- Uh-huh.
- Yeah.

Got six weeks
to workshop a play

I've been writing
for three years.

- Oh.
- Yeah.

I should really focus on that.

- Okay.
- Yeah.

- Yeah.

But are you sure you can't
focus and have a drink?

♪ ♪

- Pshh.

- Oh, hey, man.

What's going on?

- Well, you clearly see
what is going on.

So what are you doing?

Picking up chicks
in a bookstore

like an off-brand Hugh Grant?

- You know, actually,
it was--it was Hugh Grant

that got picked up
by Julia Roberts

in "Notting Hill,"
so joke's on you.

- No, I think the joke's
still on you

for remembering the plot
to fucking "Notting Hill."

- Well, I saw
that Claudette Jeffries

got published.

She was in your
MFA program, right?

- Yeah, she wrote about
a rich lady in domestic peril.

You write about a rich woman
in domestic peril,

the book's gonna sell.

- It's still 150K advance.
That must be nice.

I mean, maybe you like
working here.

- Dude, relax, Marcus Watkins.

Don't come here
and fucking gloat

like I would've been
the next Octavia Butler

if I fucked with you.

I saw you moving the books
around on the shelf

like that was gonna help it
fly out of here.

- Well, at least
it's published.

- Yeah, it's a lot of things
in here published.

- All right, listen,
in spite of all this attitude

you're giving me right now,
I actually like your writing.

Like, I really like it,

and the offer still stands.

You take care of yourself.

You have my number
when you're ready to act right.

- Damn!

[upbeat music playing]

♪ ♪

- Hi.

- Hi.
- Oh, well, hello.

- You look beautiful.

- Thank you.
- Yeah.

So first date--
let's get into it.

- Is that what this is?
I thought this was drinks.

- Oh, yeah, well, drinking
is a very important part

of first dates.

- Oh, okay.
You know, your enthusiasm

means you either date
constantly or hardly ever.

- Ah, man.

Wow, you are definitely
a playwright.

You're already trying
to figure me out.

- So which one is it?
- Damn.

Um, you know, actually,
it's kind of both.

- Okay. All right.
Let's get into it.

My story. Okay, let's see.

I was born in Lagos.
- Mm-hmm.

- Moved to Houston
when I was six.

Dad was a civil engineer.

Mom is a superintendent.

- Classic
high-achieving Nigerians.

- So you know?
- Oh, yeah.

- Okay.
A lot of people don't know.

- So how do your parents feel
about you being a playwright?

- They don't love it, no.

But I didn't love biotech,
so now we can all be unhappy.

- Wait, hang on.
Wait, I'm sorry, biotech?

- Mm-hmm.

- Oh, man,
so you're like a genius.

- You know, I had the idea
for Theranos

before that white girl ran off
with everybody's money,

except mine
would've worked out.

- All right.
- I would've followed through.

- I don't know, it sounds like
a whole scam to me, so...

- Oh, wow, you're gonna do
the Nigerian scam thing.

- [laughs] Okay, you're right.
You're right.

You're right.
I'm sorry, I'm sorry.

- So what,
'cause I'm an immigrant,

my work has to grapple

with being caught
between two worlds?

[both laugh]

Or, like, function
as some postcolonial critique

of the diaspora?

No, no, no, real progress
is getting to tell a story

about my alcoholic aunt
and her daughter

who live on Long Island,
like white writers.

- Yes, yes, I want you
to tell that story.

- I'm really--that's why--
that's why my play

is about a girl and her dad,
you know,

and I felt like that was

the most radical thing
I could write.

- That sounds amazing.

You know, if--

If you want another set
of eyes on it...

- Mm, I don't know.
I don't know.

- Why?

- Well, I don't usually let

the men I get involved with
read my work.

- Oh.
- Mm-hmm.

- Oh, so you think
we're gonna get involved?

- Maybe.
- Maybe?

- Mm.
- Yeah?

[siren wailing in distance]

- Okay, fine, you can read it.

- Oh, snap.

- [chuckles]

- You hurt my heart.
- [laughs]

narrator: Although Marcus
didn't exactly feel fireworks,

he told himself
that a spark was enough,

for a spark might eventually
lead to a fire,

whereas in his experience,

fireworks had only ever led
to an explosion.

- What's up
with the empty fridge?

- Oh, yeah, I'm sorry.
It's slim pickings, I know.

- It's okay.

You know,
I'll just have some water.

- Okay, that I can do.

- Thank you.
- Mm-hmm.

- Wow.

Busting out
the fine China for me, huh?

- Yeah.
- [laughs]

I should probably get going.

I have a bunch of errands
to run before I leave town.

- Oh, right, right.
Well, damn.

That's a bummer.
You're leaving town tomorrow.

- Yeah.

- You know,
if you gotta run errands,

I mean, would you--
would you want some company?

- I'd love some company.
- Yeah?

- Yeah,
and while we're out there,

let's get you some new cups.

- Okay, dope.
- Yeah.

[soft piano music]

♪ ♪

- You know, they got an IKEA
in Red Hook.

- Mm-mm, be better than IKEA.

- [sighs]

I needed that little jolt.
- Yeah.

- I was kind of fading there
for a second.

- Right, I felt it.
- Yeah?

- Yeah, I was like,
"He's not doing too well."

Can I--can I ask you something?

- Yeah, sure.

- What are you looking for?

- Wait a minute.

I thought you were focused
on your work right now.

- Okay.

Yeah, I mean, I was,

but that was before
I kind of liked you.

♪ ♪

Look, I've had my fill
of fuck boys,

and I just really wanna make
sure we're on the same page.

♪ ♪

- After my divorce,
I dated a lot,

and I gotta be honest.

I'm tired.

- Oh, you're so tired?
- Yeah.

- You're so tired of being
a single, employed,

attractive man
in New York City.

- Oh...
- It's exhausting.

- Hush. I need--
- Stop, stop, stop, stop!

[both laughing]

- No, but for real, like,
the small talk, the banter,

the pretending to be someone
that you're not is just...

I don't know, I...

♪ ♪

I'm just looking
for something real.

♪ ♪

All right.
- All right.

- Have fun, I guess.
- Thank you.

- All right?
- Yeah.

- All right.
- Okay.

♪ ♪

- And we're hoping
to squeeze in a 20-city tour.

Oh, that is marketing
right now.

[phone buzzing]
Let me call you back.

Hi. How are you?

- Hi. I'm good.
I'm so good.

It's really fun, but New
England is fucking freezing.

- Where'd you think you
were headed, Miami beach?

- Okay, smart ass.

- All right,
I'm sending you a sweater.

- The name's Ola Adebayo.

I just texted you the address.

- Oh, someone's sprung.
- Yeah.

Okay, look, I know
what you're going for here,

but this is way too wordy,

so I say we cut it.

- The whole thing?
- Yeah, the whole...thing.

♪ ♪

- Yo, what's good?

- So, uh, we cutting
this 'graph, or what?

- Dude, I really think
this last sentence is--

- Look, I know
it's uncomfortable,

but you have to be willing
to kill your darlings.

- Fuck it, bro,
I'll cut it as long as

you don't say another corny-ass
phrase like that ever.

- [laughs]
She's so stupid.

- Dude!

- I loved it.

- You don't have to say that
just because you feel like--

- Ola, I never lie to writers.

- [laughs] Okay.

- Okay. All right.

I rarely lie to writers,
but no, seriously,

this, it's really, really good.

And the world just felt
so lived in.

I mean, I have
a few small thoughts

I could send you
if that's helpful?

- Okay, well, no,
a few small thoughts?

I thought it was perfect.

- Oh, Jesus Christ,
I hate writers.

[phone buzzing]

- Hey, babe.

- Oh, my God, Marcus.

Um, something happened
to my apartment.

- What are you talking about?

- I got this text
from my super

that a pipe burst and a bunch
of apartments flooded.

I'm just still
five hours away,

and I'm so worried
about my fucking cat,

and my cat sitter's MIA.

- It's gonna be all right.

I'm gonna go over there
and get him right now.

- Okay.

- All right.

- Oh. Oh, sweet Hansberry.
Oh, sweetie.

I have something for you.
- What?

- Courtesy of Brattleboro's
finest local craftsmen.

- Yo, thank you!
- Of course. You like it?

- Yeah, I love it.

- I have a confession.

[cat meows]

- Hansberry ain't your cat.
- No, no, gosh.

The day before I met you,
my psychic told me

I would be swept off my feet
by a handsome Libra.

- You--you have a psychic?
- Okay, see, do not do that.

That's why
I waited to tell you.

I didn't wanna tell you.

- Not even that you saw
a psychic, you have a psychic.

- Okay, when is your birthday?
- October 13th.

- So you're a fucking Libra,

and a little handsome.
- [laughs]

- Decent.
[phone buzzing]

- All right.
- Hold on.

I gotta take this.
It's my super.

Hey, Victor.


For real?

Okay, yeah, um, could you
just keep me posted, please?

Yeah, thank you.


- What's up?

- They found mold in the walls.

- No. Shit.

- Yeah, shit is right.

Ugh, it's such bad timing.

- Why don't you
just stay here

until it all gets sorted out?

- Really?
- Yeah.

I mean, I wouldn't offer it
if I didn't mean it.

- Okay.
- Okay.

- Okay, um...

I just need to grab
a few things

from my place, if that's cool.

- Sure.

- Cool.

- ♪ Brother ♪

♪ Every time I call you home ♪

♪ You are dancing ♪

♪ Sister ♪

♪ Please don't
put your children ♪

♪ On initiation ♪

♪ ♪

♪ 'Cause there's no heaven ♪

- You got crystals?

- Yeah, manifest your dreams.

- All right.

- ♪ 'Cause there's no devil ♪

[both moaning]

♪ There's no hell ♪

♪ Mother, every time
I call you home ♪

narrator: Those couple weeks
became six, and then eight,

and before long,
Marcus and Ola

stopped pretending
they didn't live together,

and Ola gave up her lease.

♪ ♪

- ♪ True devotion ♪

♪ It's the way ♪

narrator: Marcus even
took on the cumbersome task

of having to regularly
move Ola's car

in accordance with local
street parking ordinances.

- Sir, you can't park here.

- Oh, I am sorry, ma'am.

I was just leaving.

- Who?
- I saw him on Broadway.

I don't know.
- [laughs]

- Yes. Holy shit. Marcus?

- Mia. Oh, whoa.
Hey. Long time no see.

- Hi. Seriously?
You live around here now?

- Yeah, yeah, I do.

- Sorry, uh, Jazz,
this is Marcus.

Marcus, this is Jazz.

- Oh, hi, Jazz.
Nice to meet you.

- Marcus.
I've heard a lot about you.

- You know what?

Why don't you go, and then
I'll meet you at the bar?

Just get me, like,
a Vodka soda.

Please. Don't look back.

- Actually managed to make
my name sound like an insult.

- You know what?
That's just Jazz, though.

Just, like, always
with the drama.


It is so funny
running into you here.

- Yeah, I know, yeah.

Look, I'm, uh--I'm--I'm sorry,

uh, about the last time
that we hung out.

- Oh, yeah, don't even--
don't worry about it.

- All right.

- I see you upgraded
your busted-ass bike.

- Oh, yeah, yeah.
- [laughs]

- Um...

uh, this is--this is my
girlfriend's car, actually.

- Oh.
- Yeah, she just moved in.

- Wow, congrats.
- Oh, thanks, thanks.

She's a super talented

Ola Adebayo.

- That's cool.
She sounds Black.

- Yeah, she is.

It's still--it's super new,
but yeah.

- You guys are already
living together?

- Yeah, that's a whole story.
- I bet.

With you it always is,
isn't it?

- Yeah, yeah, I know, I know.

Oh, wait.

How--how is--how's your dude?

- Oh, we broke up a while ago.

- Oh.

- Anyway, I should go catch up
with her, but...

- All right.
- Good luck with Ola.

- Thanks.
- Playwright, congrats.

And it was nice seeing you.

- Yeah, it was good
to see you too.

- Bye.
- Bye.


- Okay, listen, listen, listen,
I know it seems silly to some,

but I really do believe
in the power of crystals.

- Yeah, she's talking about me.
I'm "some."

- But listen.

Rose quartz manifests

love and relationships,

- See, that's
that next-level sorcery.

I don't know.

That might be
how Tina trapped me.

- Um, which crystals
get rid of a man?

'Cause I been tryna--

- Well, anyway,

I'm just glad I get
to finally meet you, Ola.

- Nice to meet you.
- Exactly.

You been MIA on us, bro,
full Enrique.

- Oh. Enrique?

- So you know
when Enrique Iglesias

was dating Anna Kournikova?

He disappeared
for, like, 14 years,

and when he came back,
he didn't have his mole.

You lose your mole,
you lose your soul.

- What?
- She stole his mole.

- Okay, but you know what?

That's just what happens
when you're really in it.

- Exactly, and we got
a good thing going.

- So do Enrique and Anna.
I just heard they had twins.

- Whoa, hang on, kids?

Wait, who's talking about kids?

- Yeah, maybe somewhere
way down the line,

but right now I'm really
focused on my career.

But, uh, the clock
is ticking now.

- Uh-oh.
- You heard that?

- Keep your mole, brother!

- Oh, I gotta take this.

- Oh.
- Excuse me.

[phone buzzing]

- Get 'em, baby.
- Thank you.

- What the fuck do you have on?

- What?
What are you talking about?

- What do you mean, "What?"
That belt.

- What? Ola got me this belt
in Vermont.

- Yeah, no shit,
ol' Ben-and-Jerry's-ass belt.

What, you making ice cream now?

That's not your swag, G.

- Wait--oh, man,
y'all don't like her?

- I mean, yeah, she cool.
- Yeah, it's just fast.

We don't really know her.
- Neither does Marcus.

- Well, I'm getting to know
her, and I really like her.

- Well, I hope so.
Y'all fucking live together.

- Oh, hey, baby.

What's wrong?

- Uh, it's official.

The last producer just passed.

- Oh, shit, I'm so sorry.

- Yeah, they said
it feels too small.

Apparently, Lin-Manuel Miranda
really changed the game

for what audiences want
from diverse playwrights.

Fucking Hamilton.
- Oh, baby, I am so sorry.

If it makes you feel
any better,

I thought Hamilton
was overrated.

- It's not.
It's really good.

- Yeah, I mean, you're right.

It is really good.
- It's real good.

- It's so good.

I had a good-ass
hot dog outside too.

Soon as we left there,

my man was out there,
had the bacon on--

- That was a good day.
- Man, what?

- You know, it was really nice
to meet you guys,

um, and if it's okay, babe,
I just wanna go home.

- Yeah, yeah, uh,
we'll just wait for the food,

and then we'll take it to go.

Hey, uh, y'all, I think
we're gonna head out.

- Okay.
- Okay, cool.

- Hey, it was great
meeting you.

- Nice to meet you.
- Nice to meet you too.

- All right.
- I'm so sorry about your play.

- All right, brother.
- All right.

♪ ♪

- What the hell am I doing?

I'm an over-the-hill
aspiring playwright.

Actually, not even aspiring,
just failed.

I failed.

Probably can't even get a job
as a goddamn waitress.

- Hey, look at me.

Those producers
don't know shit,

and they can't stop you
from doing what you love.

Now, listen, I work
with writers for a living,

and you are smarter,
more talented,

and have more to say
than 99% of them.

So here's what you're gonna do.

You're gonna take the L
for now,

but tomorrow,

you are not dropping off
your résumé to no diner.

You are going to get
on your laptop

and write
your goddamn masterpiece,

something so undeniable

they will be begging you
to produce it.

And in the meantime, I got you.

- Babe, can I ask you
a question?

- What?

- How'd I get so lucky?

- Oh, I don't know.

- It's rhetorical.

What I'm looking at right now,

Black love,

supportive, strong,
beautiful Black love.

Your mom's calling.

- Oh.

- Should--should I answer?

- I mean, uh, sure.

Hi, Mom, Dad.

- Ah, what a nice surprise.

- Hi, Mr. and Mrs. Watkins.
It's a pleasure to meet you.

- Donna and Kirby.

- So, Ola, Marcus tells us
you're from Nigeria.

- Mm-hmm,
I was born there, yes,

but moved here when I was six.

- Did Marcus tell you
I spent some time there

teaching at UNILAG?

- Um, no, he didn't.

- You know, Donna and I
practically lived

off of suya kebabs.

- Oh man, oh, my goodness,
that smell,

that red pepper smell,
that's what I miss most.

Um, when we moved here,
I used to always ask my mom,

"Why does America smell
like nothing?"

- [laughs]
She's funny.

You know, when Kirby got back,

we found
a traditional Yoruba chair

at a flea market in Detroit.

We have to send it to you.

- That's very, very kind,
but it's totally unnecessary.

Thank you, though.

- Okay.
It's yours when you want it.

After all, it was made
for the tribal king and queen.

- Oh, Marcus, my king.

Thank you.

Oh my goodness,
I know we have got...

narrator: At the time,
Marcus's choice to lean in

had been
a refreshing change of pace,

yet when the full weight
of his decision

finally hit him,
he felt like a werewolf

waking up in a field
surrounded by dead farmers.

[soft music]

♪ ♪

- Mm.

What are you doing?
- Just chilling.

Just checking out my girlfriend

in this small piece
of lingerie here.

This, is, uh...
this is all right.

- Work for you?
- Yeah.

- Mm-hmm.

♪ ♪

Everything okay?

- Yeah.
- Mm-hmm?

- Yeah, just--
just gimme a second.

- Just a second?
- Mm-hmm.

- Okay, well...

- Hey, you know what?
Actually, don't worry about it.

- Oh, why's that?
- I'm gonna do you.

- Oh. [laughs]

Gonna do me, huh?
- I'm gonna do you.

- Okay.

- That's how we do things
in this house.

- [laughs]

♪ ♪

- Oh, sorry.

Sorry, I'll go slower.

- No, no, no, no, uh,
it's not that.

You're sure everything's okay?

- Yeah, yeah, I'm sorry.

That's--it's never
happened to me before.

[both laugh]

- Um...

it's nothing I'm doing, right?

- Oh, no, oh, no, no, no,
no, no, not at all.

It's just nothing.

It might be work stuff,
you know, like,

just, it's been stressful,
and I think

I just can't clear
my head, you know?

- Okay.
Yeah, oh, yeah, yeah.

- But it's not you.
I swear.

- Okay.
- Yeah.

- All right, well, cool.
- All right.

- We can just
try again tomorrow.

- Okay.
- All right.

- Tomorrow night.
- Mm-hmm.

- Tomorrow night it's on.

- Tomorrow night.
- Yeah.

- Put it in the calendar.
- All right.

narrator: After the same thing
happened the next day,

Marcus tried
to troubleshoot the problem.

[upbeat music]

- ♪ Nothing but a heartache
every day ♪

narrator: Oysters didn't help.

♪ ♪

In fact,
nothing seemed to work.

- How's my king doing?

- ♪ He's got me all won ♪

- Nurse needs to switch hands.

- ♪ Nothing but a heartache ♪

- I just don't know
what's wrong.

I'm just so in my head,
and the more I stress out

about it,
the more in my head I get,

and it's sort of
this whole self-fulfilling...

- Mm.

It's okay.

What was wrong with him?

How could he be doing this
to another woman?

There was no way out.

He had to push in
even further.

In order to more generally
test his ability

to rise to the occasion,
Marcus tried flipping

through the Rolodex
of his sexual fantasies.

He imagined the waitress

from the restaurant
down the block.

He imagined
the problematic influencer

whose book he'd worked on.

He even imagined

his 12th grade
AP English teacher,

all to no avail,

but just when he started
to worry

that there was, in fact,
something wrong with him...

- ♪ Live on your life ♪

♪ It's your right
to enjoy your life ♪

♪ So it's gonna stay that way
'cause it's your life ♪

♪ We all try
to enjoy our lives ♪

♪ And you ain't different,
baby, live on your life ♪

♪ ♪


♪ ♪

[door opens]
- Sorry, I left my phone!

- ♪ You can change it
so enjoy your life ♪

♪ As long as-- ♪

- Oh, Jesus! Fuck!


- What are you thinking about?
- Uh--oh--uh--

- Mm-hmm.
- Hey, hey, hey, look, hey.

Ola, wait, hang on.

Ola, hold on, wait.

Listen, I just--

I think I rushed into things,

and maybe we should just--
we should slow down.

- [laughing]

Wow. Slow down?

You wanna slow down.

You were the one pushing this.

You remember that?


you asked me to move in.

- I know. I know.

- I mean, I knew
you had your issues.

You barely had
any fucking furniture in here.

But I thought to myself,
I thought,

"You know, no relationship
is perfect, right?"

So what?

We're gonna have mediocre sex.
I can deal with that.

- No, no, it wasn't always bad!

- Oh, don't play yourself.
It was never that good.

But what I won't deal with,
I'm not gonna deal with,

a man who can't even be honest
or direct about what he wants.

Can't even say how he feels.

- Ola, where are you going?

- Don't worry about me.
I'm fine.

I'll send someone
to get my shit.

You're not a king.

You're a little-ass boy.

[Nolan Porter's
"If I Could Only Be Sure"]

♪ ♪

[cat meows]

♪ ♪

- ♪ If I could only be sure ♪

♪ That you love me, baby ♪

♪ If I could only be sure ♪

♪ That you love me, baby ♪

♪ I'd climb
the highest mountain ♪

♪ I'd swim the deepest sea ♪

♪ I'd take on all your misery
just to make you happy ♪

♪ Yeah, yeah ♪

♪ I'd turn my world
upside down ♪

♪ I'd turn my smiles all
into frowns ♪

♪ I'd do anything at all,
yeah ♪

♪ If you'd just let me
love you, baby ♪

♪ If you'd just
let me love you, baby ♪

♪ I'd do anything at all,
yeah ♪

♪ If you'd just let me
love you, baby ♪