Power vs Power: The Analysis of Power, and a Prediction of the Powers to Come.

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I got to begin with Dre, who unlike other fans I believe to be smarter than we are led to believe. Dre is caught between two devils; Tommy and Kanan. But he is also in a position of power since he general manager of three nightclubs owned by Ghost, and has proved invaluable to as a Primera. Dre is smart, loyal, ambitious, and a hard worker. He is playing the character of weak duck.

In the last three episodes Dre has displayed strategic value; he developed an untraceable and elaborate dope-selling scheme in Truth, where the client purchases two bottles of liquor. One bottle shows up as ordered. The second bottle is removed from the shelf, disappears, and the customer is brought a small box of pills instead. Brilliant!

Secondly, Dre and Julio were brought in by the Feds for questioning. This was a funny scene. Both characters weren’t taken in together, but walked past each other downtown in the federal law building where they were questioned. Escorted by Feds. When they saw each other, Dre kept it flowing, smooth walking with only an eye to bat at Julio. Julio, however, turned his head and looked right into Dre’s eyes. Clearly a bad move.

Once Julio is released he goes to Truth and orders Dre to shut down the operation. Dre immediately goes to Tommy informing of Julio’s decision to cease drug activity in the clubs, and seed the lie that Julio was kept in the box longer than he was. Surprisingly, Tommy believed it. Now had Julio not been fucking up before by allowing Domingo to skate after smacking Grim, then Tommy might not have fed into it. See here? Dre was told to stop dealing, which meant no money for him, and with no money Dre cannot pay Kanan. Dre found the perfect scapegoat by taking advantage of an unfortunate situation. He took a problem and made it someone else’s problem thus setting for himself a path to promotion. Julio gets killed, and Dre has the chance to move up in the organization as the number two man. Dre moves up to number two and Kanan has more reason to keep Dre alive, and let’s be honest Kanan needs Dre. He is not as expendable as Kanan makes him out to be with his threats. Dre obviously sees this.

Dre wants to on the winning side, and right now it’s no telling who’s going to win. Will it be Tommy? Or will it be Kanan? Most likely Ghost since he is the main character of Power, the show is about him. But for the sake of story Dre has got to choose a side. Right now, he’s a spy for Kanan. As number two, Dre could even let Tommy and Kanan kill each other, with both bosses out the way Dre is free to take over the whole organization. The boy has a chance to win, and has increased his chances in last week’s episode by confronting Kanan with money to leave Tariq alone and a plan. Unfortunately, we were unable to hear the specifics of the plan. In that scene, we only saw them speaking through Julio’s eyes, who was surprised to see Kanan alive. First problem. The scene switches over to Tariq’s arrival at Kanan’s apartment, and he says hello to someone the audience is not exposed to. An hour later, Kanan returns home from meeting Dre to find Jukebox waiting with Tariq’s phone in her hand. Second problem.

This is where it all crashes. I have two theories: Julio redeems himself by informing Tommy about what he saw with Dre and Kanan. Tommy kills them both, and Julio is in the clear free to run as Tommy’s number two. Second theory, Tommy clips Julio before Julio can say anything leaving Dre free to continue his schemes. Now I have no reason or prediction why Julio gets killed, but it would be for his continued lack of respect on the street. The problem with Julio learning about Kanan can play out either way. It is Jukebox’s reappearance that jeopardizes Dre’s strategy. She has now convinced Kanan to kidnap Tariq, get ransom, and kill the boy and Ghost. Tommy is already suspicious about Dre since Tariq’s brief missing scare at the beginning of this season, and confronted him with the question “Who is Slim?” the codename Kanan has been using to remain anonymous. This is where things get complicated. Dre will be confronted again once Ghost receives the kill his only son has been kidnapped. How does Dre skate on this? I have no idea. Unless Dre crafts his magic like he has done before, then I’m sorry to say one of my favorite characters will die. But I strongly believe he will not die, I think there is more to Dre’s arc, and will continue to flourish in the seasons to come. And he is quick too.

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There are serious flaws in Jukebox’s plans; Ghost has no money. Milan took it all last season, the money Ghost recovered for reimbursement was spent, and his assets are still frozen by Feds despite him being cleared of the murder of Greg Knox. The assets will be thawed in a few days, since the charges were dismissed, but still anything can happen in such a short amount of time. What does Kanan do when he finds out Ghost is broke? How will Ghost raise the funds? And the final question pertains to the feelings Kanan has developed for Tariq. He has grown fond of the boy. He thanks of him as the son he never had, or the one he’s always wanted.

Kanan is very adaptive, in fact he is a better ghost than Ghost. In the beginning of the season when Kana found out Ghost was arrested he told Jukebox it is better to release Tariq and abandon the idea of kidnapping. Kanan knew with the Feds hot on Ghost and his kid missing heat would only increase and lead back to him. Dre returned Tariq home. The boy never knew what happened since he passed out from sipping lean, and continue hanging with Kanan. There were initial theories that Tariq will kill Kanan at the end of this season with discovery Kanan killed Shawn, who Tariq loved as a brother. Shawn was Kanan’s son. I highly doubt it now since Jukebox rekidnapped the boy. And my thing is Jukebox’s plan is so stupid, she already had Dre making weekly payments because the kidnapping plan fell through. The bitch is just greedy.

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The only way I see it all ending is with Ghost meeting Kanan at some warehouse. Kanan has a gun to Tariq’s head. Ghost falls to his knees, crying and begging. He apologizes to Kanan for everything; snitching on him, sending him to jail for ten years, and stealing away his only child. The hate Kanan feels finally cools as his anger toward his former student and friend melts away. He lowers his gun, but lifts it up when Jukebox comes out of the shadows with her gun ready to kill Ghost. Kanan kills Jukebox. He releases Tariq. The mentor and his student part ways not as enemies, not as friends, as two men who worked out their differences. An outcome like this allows the chance for Kanan to return in future seasons, maybe as some sort of ally to Ghost. This is another long shot theory. The parting of ways does close one story arc, and opens another. This would bring Power into its third act. 50 Cent has stated his intention end Power with season seven.

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The last three seasons should begin a new storyline for that closing act, one that wraps up the entire theme of the show. This was done in Sons of Anarchy where its main character stepped in new shoes all the while trying to find himself and leave a criminal style behind. Ghost’s arc is a stark comparison with minor differences; he’s already a king, but wants out of drug life. There’s no new shoes to walk in, but I strongly believe the events of season four will and have transformed him into a man seeking redemption for past mistakes made against family and friends. Over the past three seasons he has manipulated, lied, and hurt everyone close to him. This brings me to the character of Terry Silver, the lawyer defending Ghost. This man knew Ghost was guilty for murder. Silver is an ACLU type lawyer who has defended many innocent African-Americans and other minorities. With that kind of background this character has developed the ability to read people, to know when they are lying, and when they are innocent or guilty. Ghost tried to manipulate Silver, but it didn’t work, and Silver confronted him about that. He assumes Ghost is guilty simply because he knows this man to be a fraud and a gangster, so even though Ghost is innocent those close to him assume he’s guilty for all the harm he has done to them especially Angela. Think of it as the Little Boy Who Cried Wolf. You lie so much no one believes you when you are innocent.

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Silver is an honest man. He admits to Ghost that the money from his defense will go to men innocent sitting behind bars who need proper representation. So, this is a guy willing to accept blood money for the benefit of good purpose. A legit man operating in a corrupt world. Ghost wants to be legit, but unwilling to confess to corruption, and refuses to believe or admit the kind of man he is: manipulative, liar, deceitful, and disrespectful. Ghost has had a rude awakening in the first half of Power season four. The character of Ghost must now admit to the type of man he is rather than the one he thinks he is, and seek Redemption for all his crimes.

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Before I end this let me wrap up my predictions: Ghost and Angela will not reconnect this season. The speech she gave him when the charges were dismissed proves this. Angela will spend the rest of the season investigating who the mole was and who killed Greg. The investigation leads her to Mike, who may try to kill her, and from the trailer we see Angela pointing a gun to someone in her house. This has to be Mike. Ghost and Angela, if at all will reconnect in the season finale or season five.

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Tasha will not take Ghost back. The floater she accepted from Simon Stern will impact Ghost and his business for the remainder of the season. I am very excited to see Larenz Tate this season, still no word of who or what character he’ll be. Some say a love interest for Tasha, but we shall see.

Chicago recruits Tommy for a job to kill someone threatening their organization. They get him to do it because he’s the new guy, the recruit, and expendable. This job will most likely last two episodes, can’t see it going on until the finale. By the finale Ghost and Tommy will be reunited.

History’s Unknown: Special Edition, The Untold Story of 2,000: Caribbean POWs on British Soil

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The siege of Fort Charlotte, St. Lucia in 1796 ended with two-thousand African-Caribbean soldiers and their families surrendering to British forces. They threw down their arms and ammo, and marched onto British ships clapped in irons. Terms of the surrender promised they would be treated as prisoners of war rather than cattle (slaves). The soldiers were ex-slaves, freed by France after the Revolution, but a minority of its garrison was white.

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The journey across the Atlantic to Portchester Castle was rough with soldiers and prisoners both suffering from sickness. A total of 268 prisoners and 100 soldiers died. Approximately 2,080 African-Caribbean and 333 white soldiers, and 99 women and children arrived at Portchester in October of 1796.

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African-Caribbean soldiers were subject to abuse and bullying by European prisoners. A physician argued that the prisoners be feed potatoes for dietary staple reasons seeing that was the closest thing to yams.

A year later, in 1797 it seems a large portion of the imprisoned Afro-Caribbean soldiers defected to the British joining their captive’s navy and forming battalions under British command. The soldiers saw action in France, Russia, and Italy.

Britain’s own black population during this time was relatively small, at least 10-15,000. This is a forgotten chapter in black history, and the identities of the POWs have been lost too. A curator at the English Heritage by the name of Abigail Coppins is responsible for finding this lost fabric of history. This past Wednesday, Portchester Castle opened an exhibit honoring the black fighters, a few of whom were the first to fight against slavery.

The most famous prisoner at Portchester, the one whose identity we do know of is Captain Louis Delgres. He was born in Martinique, a man of mixed ethnicity. His parents were most likely a white man, probably French, and his mother an African slave. However, the practice and customs of slavery in the Caribbean differed from slavery in States. Delgres was captured by the British troops in St. Vincent in 1796.

In 1793, colonies in the West Indies belonging to Britain and France were dragged into war by their colonial masters, Britain and Revolutionary France. Victor Hugues captured the island of Guadeloupe from Britain in 1794 with the intention to end slavery.

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History’s Unknown, Part V: Ancient Colors

Raven has been missing!! Sorry guys been busy enjoying my post-Associate’s Degree life. For the past few weeks I been strategizing how best to build up my platform, and the answer that always arrives to me is…WRITE. Just write anything, and post it. So that is my plan, and I begin by continuing my History’s Unknown series.

Yesterday I was speaking with my American history professor (I have now begun my journey for a Bachelor’s degree) about Hernan Cortez’s arrival and eventual conquest of the Aztec Empire, he brought to my attention an Unknown History, the Cochineal Red. It is not mentioned in many history books, and you guys know how much I venerate about the unknown history topics. Usually the discovery of new knowledge leads me. So here we go, with the history of Colors lol 

Beginning with Cochineal insect found near the Colorado River resting on cactus pads. This beetle produces a rare form of red known to us. For thousands of year the old cultures of the New World harvested the Cochineal red. The Aztec warriors painted it on their, their kings accepted large bags of the red dye as tribute from lesser kings. When Cortes visited Tenochtitlan (Mexico) he observed the rich quality of the Cochineal red dye, which was brighter than the European red. 

The red dye used by Europeans prior to their arrival to the New World was dull and faded. Cortes brought the red dye to Spain, and soon the product was in high demand beating. It was worth more than gold and silver. Cochineal red was expensive, and like ancient silk it was reserved for the elite classes. Money and power. The red robes worn by Catholic cardinals and red coats worn by British troops in the American Revolution were made from Cochineal. It also became a common food dye for cakes, pies, ice cream, and cosmetic materials. 

Another rare and rich colorful dye was Tyrian Purple, not to be confused with Tyrion Lannister from Game of Thrones. Produced by the Phoenicians who extracted the dye from the mucus of Murexes, a type of snail found in Tyre. Commonly associated with royalty purple became standard fashion for Rome’s great families and its emperors, and adopted by its successor state the Byzantine Empire. 

Tales from Phoenician mythology state the God Melqart discovered the value of this substance when his dog Tyros returned home with a purple stained tongue from biting Murexes. 

Blonde, still on the topic of colors but on this one I’m including a little information about hair too. Two Norse goddesses, Sif and Freyja were blonde. Freyja is associated with love, beauty, and fertility hence the common association of blonde and beauty. Other European myths speak of fairies with blonde hair. Fairies would steal any human blonde babies from their cribs and switched them with changelings. 

Natural blonde hair is caused by eumelanin, a pigment deficiency. Low levels of sunlight in parts of the world account for the creation of blonde hair. We know loss of sunlight results in loss of Vitamin D, which can not only turn the skin lighter but hair too. Northern Europe is one example of this, where blonde hair is common. 80% of the Scandinavian population is blonde haired. 

Pink, this is my baby sister’s favorite color! So Keely this is for you. We you here pink you think sweetness and romance. Innocence and tenderness. But eroticism and seduction make up the common inception of this color. The term, pink was not used until the 17th century. Pink was not as fashionable as purple was in the Middle Ages. But there was a rise of this color in 13th and 14th century art. And pink was not always a girly color, it was originally referred to boys and blue went to girls. Considered as a masculine color. They say it was stronger, and passionate, and given that pink is a very light red it was a perfect fit for boys.

Black, this my other sister’s favorite color. So this one for Julia. And as a professor of mines said once “girls who wear black are cooler” a true statement. But both my sister’s cool as ice though. The darkest color, its use goes back to the Neolithic cave paintings. Perhaps the oldest color in human history. By the late Middle Ages royals, nobles, clergy, and other officials adopted the use of black in their wardrobes. Two famous historical figures to do this was Edward the Black Prince and my ancestor, Cesare Borgia, but some historians argue it was due to syphilis. Benedictine monks wore black as a meaning of humility and penitence. The reason for black ink was due to the fact it provided the greatest contrast with white paper, hence the reason why black is so formidable to our literature. 

The reason aristocrats and lawmakers adopted black in the 14th century was to show how serious they took their jobs. Furthermore, a series of laws were passed around Europe reserving only the nobility the right to wear exotic colors. The merchant bankers of Italy retaliated by changing to black robes. It was then picked up by the nobility beginning with the Dukes of Milan and Savoy. Seen as a color of power, dignity, humility, and temperance.