Queer Eye (2018) s03e05 Episode Script

Black Girl Magic

1 [KARAMO] Okay guys, you wanna know what we're doing this week? - [ALL] Yeah! - Her name is Jess Gilbo.
She's 23 years old and she is from Lawrence, Kansas.
- Yeah.
- AKU.
Jess came out when she was 16 years old.
Yes! And identifies as a lumberjack lesbian.
Hold up, hold up! This is our first lesbian.
Gay-reka! I love the richness of a lumberjack lesbian.
So guys, Jess was nominated by Carmen, who is her childhood best friend.
Jess is the most generous person that I know.
Cheers, queers! She's so focused on making other people happy, that she doesn't put herself at the top of the list.
Our house is definitely a safe-space in Lawrence.
The gayest space in Lawrence.
I live with two people, one of them is also named Jess and then Chase.
I met them here in town, at one of, like, the queer hang out spots.
[JESS] When I went to college I wanted to build computers, but with the amount of debt that I was building up, I decided to drop out.
For a living, I am a server at a Greek restaurant downtown.
Okay, two gyro sandwiches.
[JESS] With every single job that I go into I got to come out all over again which is really frustrating and scary and terrifying.
Enjoy! [CHUCKLES] Especially in Kansas, you never know if that's going to be the last day that you work there.
Jess has been on her own since the age of 16, when her adoptive parents disowned her for being a lesbian.
- And she's 23? - Yes.
[CARMEN] High school was really hard for Jess.
She got outed to her parents, who are, frankly, homophobic.
It was an eruption of emotions and I was immediately kicked out.
There was no time to pack.
There's no like grace period.
I was told to get out.
So Uh I was hoping that despite all the stuff that I heard as a young girl at church, they would realize, "Hey, that's my kid, so of course I'm going to love them.
" You know? I'm sorry.
It's like a one-two punch.
First, she doesn't know her biological family and then the adopted family then disowns you for you being who you authentically are.
[JESS] After I got kicked out, I stayed with Carmen and she took care of me in ways that I can't even begin to thank her for.
I can't imagine the emotional trauma that that must have been like, but because she was forced to be independent at such a young age, she believes that she's on her own and kinda has to figure it out by herself.
[JESS] I have not been in a house since I got kicked out of my parents house.
It's not really well decorated.
Most of the furniture in the house comes from, like, the garbage, or, like, that we got for free.
[CARMEN] The couch.
It is literal trash, pulled out of a dumpster.
The kitchen is just kind of a tragedy that we don't really know how to fix.
[CARMEN] Jess does not eat a lot.
[JESS] I love ramen.
There have been weeks in a row, where I had it for like breakfast, lunch and dinner, because I couldn't afford anything else.
Jess needs our help, so that she can open up to people, as she redefines what family means to her.
Love.
- I feel the feels already.
- [KARAMO] Yes.
So, our missions this week guys is to take Jess from feeling rejected to fully accepted.
[ALL] Yes! This is me cheering.
Okay, we all are really gay.
I said okay.
[LAUGHTER] Look at the gay flag, we are definitely here.
- [ANTONI] We're in the right place.
- [TAN] Oh my gosh, I've never seen this, this is a gay American flag.
- I've never seen a gay American flag.
- [BOBBY] It's gay America! We are here.
We are queer.
We are queer and we are here.
- Hello.
- Hello.
- [TAN] Wait, are we walking right in? - We are.
- It's a first.
- [JONATHAN] Look at this green, gorgeous piano.
Oh, my god.
- Jess? - Is she at work? Someone was here recently-ish, there are flowers that are not dead.
Oh, I love it, it says "Slay the day.
" Jess, we are in your house.
[TAN] Look at this piece of art on the wall.
[BOBBY] She's an artist.
No, wait, wait.
- [ANTONI] Oh wow! - [BOTH LAUGH] - I'm all about female power.
- Very subtle.
[ANTONI] Her furniture, it's like fancy '80s stuff that people with like new money had.
[BOBBY] Yep.
I hated the 80s.
I kind of love them.
She be needing a bed frame too, girl.
She needs a bed frame.
[JONATHAN] There are cigarettes and old brandy.
Oh god, oh! [GROANS] Gross.
[ANTONI] Mouldy, slimy celery and it made the whole fridge slime up.
Something is dripping out on to my hand.
Oh no! None of you are weirded out that - we can't find Jess.
- That we're in somebody else's house.
- [ALL] Hi.
- [JESS SCREAMS] [LAUGHS] - Sorry we're in your house.
- Hi, Jess.
- So good to meet you.
- Nice to meet you.
Sorry, we let ourselves in.
Nice to meet you, I'm Tan.
Can we talk about that gorgeous smile on you? You have such a beautiful smile.
How many roomies do you have? We have two.
- Can you show us your little space? - Yes.
- [JESS] This is my space.
- Alright.
Is this your closet? Yeah.
[BOBBY] Is this a metaphor that you never wanna be in the closet again? - [JESS] Yep.
- [ANTONI] Sorry, what's your tat? This one is for Paramore, my favorite band and my favorite song.
[KARAMO] You identify as a lumberjack lesbian? - Yes.
- What exactly is that? Basically, like, in the fall, I like to just put on some plaid.
Is that kind of what costume play or no? Hmm.
Oh, you're such a big lumberjack, Daddy! - [LAUGHS] - No, it's not like that.
- Oh no! - It's okay.
[ANTONI] She's a super pretty girl and she presents so nicely and then you see her room and you're like We're here for a reason.
Bobby's gotta fix that room.
I actually legit want to try this.
I know people who eat this stuff like dry.
- Is it Did you put the - Yeah, it's pretty good.
- It's a sodium bomb, but it's delicious.
- [BOBBY] Yeah.
- Tell me more about lumberjack lesbian.
- Lumberjack lesbian.
It's kinda like this grungy, rustic, like, combination of plaid and torn jeans.
Do you love that or is that just, are you fitting into a category? I don't know.
I've never really thought about it.
My style icon is Janelle Monáe, love her.
- Love.
- Love her.
Love.
She, like, combines masculinity and femininity into one.
Keeping people guessing between, like, whether or not, like, I wanna be you know, masculine today.
I wanna wear a button up and a bow tie and look cute.
Hm.
So, little confession to make, I tried the little styrofoam Ramen for the first time.
- [JESS] Oh, yeah? - It's delicious.
There's this thing called a Potluck.
- Have you ever heard of it? - Oh, yeah.
So, that's something that I was thinking would be interesting for you and your friends at the end of this week.
I've never done a potluck or, like, been to one.
- Been to one, really? - Yeah.
That's, like, all we did in college was, like, one person makes the risotto, you make like a large pasta dish and then like everyone just sort of brings their own thing and it's like a mish-mosh.
I think the thing that I'm stuck on is like having other people bring stuff, because I'm like, "Oh, well, you're my friend, you don't have to bring anything.
"' But, they're your friends and they want to bring something.
I think that's like really adorable just have a bunch of people get together and bring a bunch of different stuff.
- and see if it works or not.
- Yeah.
[BOBBY] Tell me what is going on in the house.
Kind of feels like even your bedroom that you're not here permanently, like you're almost kind of just passing through.
Yeah, I've had a lot of temporary living situations, so, like, I've never had that kind of like sense of like, "Oh let me make this more homey.
" - I don't really know what that means.
- Alright.
I get that.
One thing that started giving me more a sense of home, just finding those little luxuries that make a home feel permanent.
I want to be able to help you get this place set up to where you feel like the adult that you've had to be, for the last seven years.
- Okay.
- Yeah? Yeah.
I'm not gonna address this container.
Wait, why are we not addressing - This is, this is, just like a basic - 'Cause we just did by looking at it.
This represents the whole kitchen.
I really hope that a dog did that.
- That tattoo of Paramore - Mm hm.
- One of my favorite groups ever.
- Oh, my goodness.
I love Paramore so much.
I used to get picked on because of I, - because I listened to rock music.
- Are you serious? Yeah, no I got called an Oreo all the time.
I honestly like, have a warped sense of black culture and, like, what it means to be a black woman.
In my experience I feel like I can't really fit in.
Like I'm not white, but also all the kids at school that are black think that you know, I'm not black enough and it was just, like, hard.
Like, I got out cast from that group, I was outcast from literally everyone else, just because I was like different.
It bothers me when people try to define our style or our tastes just based on our skin tone.
- Yeah - Because there's so much more to that.
I want to be recognized as, like, a strong black woman who, you know, who knows about her culture and can stand up for people who look like me, especially here.
I just want to tell you that you already are a strong black women.
- Seriously.
- It does not feel like it.
It may not feel like it, because sometimes the things that other people see in us, we don't see in ourselves.
Thank you for being so open with me.
I feel like I can really talk to you.
- Do you have a perm in here? - Yeah.
- Okay.
- Yeah.
When's last time you had your perm? It's been like a few months for sure, and I think it's just 'cause I can't afford to, because I just can't afford to do it.
Sometimes it's kind of better to do something that, like, makes more sense with the maintenance and when I say maintenance like time, money, all that stuff.
Okay, got it, hear you.
I cannot even bring myself to understand like what she's going through.
On top of being rejected by her adopted family, She's a young woman of color, in an extremely red state and she's a lesbian.
She is an expert in overcoming adversity in a way that I will not ever know.
Who are these people? That is the last time that I was with my family.
That was.
- Is this your biological family? - No.
- Your adoptive family? - Wait, this is the last time? Yeah.
[TAN] When was the last time you saw them? It's been five years.
I mean, we've spoken a little bit, but it's not been positive communication.
It's been like email, text, phone calls and things like that.
- [TAN] Are they religious? - Very! I've been out on my own since I was 15 and I went through the same thing, I was adopted.
I found out later that I was adopted.
I left home at 15, because I came out and that wasn't okay.
And it took me a while to find those core people in my life that became my family, but I have the now and it didn't happen right away.
It didn't happen till my mid-twenties, till I really found those people that I'm, like, "these are the people that are going to be in my life forever.
" I just feel like maybe family is not something that I'm going to have - really - No.
Just based off of like, friends coming and going.
[ANTONI] Tell us about the people who are supportive in your life, who are your roommates, best friend, your nominator.
Yeah, we've been friends for, like, nine years.
She's been like a forever friend, like, a constant which is the only constant - I've ever had.
- [ANTONI] Well, she's your family.
- Yeah, exactly.
Yeah.
- So, you have, right? [KARAMO] I want Jess to understand her place in the world and that exactly who she is, all of her identities, make her a strong, beautiful, black lesbian woman.
[BOBBY] For years I didn't speak with my parents, but you have to realize, if you go out there and you find your chosen family, you'll be able to move on from them.
It's so important to feel like you're a part of a community.
It has been for me, even with, like, the Fab Five, like, just to have the sort of, like, a semblance of a family, that really helps make the days good.
[JONATHAN] I just really want her to see there is nothing ever wrong with her.
She's completely lovable and that even though it's not okay the way her family has treated her, she will be okay.
[TAN] That's really difficult as a kid to understand, that one day my family might turn me down and say, "Actually, I don't want to love you anymore because of who you are.
" As a kid you assume that the people you love will love you unconditionally for the rest of your life.
They don't have to love you as you get older.
You have to find the strength to find people who love you enough to fight for it.
[JESS] Sorority houses are up there at the top of the hill.
I was never much of a sorority girl myself.
Me either.
I didn't even finish high school, so that wasn't even an option for me.
We didn't even get there.
I lived in my car.
I lived on friends' couches.
I eventually started getting my own places.
You know, my parents I'm pretty sure if I would have prayed and gone to church everyday and acted straight, and gone to conversion camp and, like, things like that, then they probably would have let me stay there, but it's not worth it.
- No.
- At that point I don't want.
- That's horrible.
- Yeah.
Nobody should have to go through that.
My biological mom was like 16 when she got pregnant, and so she gave me up to adoption to her older sister and husband.
My biological mother was 16 as well, and she had my biological sister already.
And so, I was the second one at age 16.
You have a biological sister? Yeah.
My parents told me that she was my cousin.
You know, I didn't know until she spent the night at my house and she was like, "Hey, by the way, I'm your sister.
" My parents kept me in the dark completely when it came to that.
So what's up with you guys now? Well, I haven't, like I have not really tried to have like a connection with her.
Why? I mean, you said earlier that you didn't have family, but I don't know, I just don't want her to feel like burdened or you know, like she needs to help me or take care of me.
But, maybe she just wants a cool sister too.
- I never really thought about it that way.
- Maybe she wants family too.
Is she - She's a year older than me.
- Year older, okay.
And she lives in KC.
I don't know that much else, besides the fact that she has a kid.
So, you're an auntie.
So I guess I'm an aunt too, oh my goodness.
You're like 'oh my god, I never thought about that either.
' I never did think about that.
She's reached out? - Yeah.
- Yeah and you've not responded? Yeah, she's reached out, I just like I usually don't respond.
Stop looking at it as people are feeling pity for you and start realizing that people want you in their life.
Maybe it's time to reconnect.
I would love to build that kind of connection.
You sound like you'd be a great auntie.
[LAUGHS] [BOBBY] This is where I wanted to bring you, this is one of my favorite stores.
It's artsy, it's young, it's hip.
When you see things that you like, point it out to me, 'cause it's gonna help me.
Yeah.
The things you surround yourself with, can bring joy to you.
Oh my goodness, that's amazing.
Design isn't just about furniture and spending money.
- These are fun.
- Yeah.
Also, I'm really loving like the not silver silverware.
I didn't really realize that was a thing.
- [BOBBY] The gold's really cool.
- [JESS] Yeah, the gold's really cool.
It's about things that motivate you.
What do you think? - Oh, wow! - Right? - What it feels like to sit on a comfortable couch.
- [BOBBY LAUGHS] She's been through so much and I want to make sure that she keeps being motivated to keep going further.
I definitely have a sense now, of what you like and I think that I can continue without you.
- Fairy Godmother, surprises, got it.
- Sometimes it just takes a fairy, right? [BOTH LAUGH] - This is our space.
It's cute, right? - Yeah.
- It really is.
- Okay, so tell me about what you got on.
A lot more feminine than lumberjack lesbian.
Yeah, I think it's just more of, like It's either lumberjack lesbian or like crop top.
- Okay.
- It's like those are the two.
Okay, okay.
What I will say, is that your lumberjack style did nothing for your body, because you were hiding this away.
Like your body's great, let's highlight it.
- Okay.
- First things first, I didn't want to give you fru-fru-frilly, it's not you.
- Isn't that gorgeous? - I love that.
- Good.
- I love that.
This is the kind of thing that you can throw on with pretty much anything.
Jeans, t-shirt, you're good to go.
It's clear that Jess can flip between masculine and feminine.
I don't care about a label anymore.
I want to find something that works for her.
Not Janelle Monáe, not lumberjack lesbian.
Jess! Are you ready? Oh, my.
I love this.
I think you look so cute.
You look so cute.
Oh my gosh.
I love that.
Okay wait.
Final touch.
I'm just gonna rest on there because I don't want to screw that, but I think your buns might cause me an issue.
Don't worry about it.
Oh my goodness, yes, absolutely.
Would I buy this? Absolutely.
If it were in my price range? Yes.
Isn't it now nice to see that there are options other than the box that you thought you lived in.
Yeah.
[TAN] You can flip between masculine and feminine, you don't have to decide or define who you are and how you dress.
It's purely androgynous.
Oh, Jess! Wow.
[CHUCKLES] I've not seen myself in a dress in years! What goes through your mind when you're wearing a dress? Church! - Oh.
- Yeah.
When I was younger, I could not wear pants to church.
Like, the whole congregation would talk about you, so I was forced to wear dresses.
So, it has that negative connotation attached to it? - Okay.
- Yeah.
I love this.
- You do? - I think it's yes, it's comfortable.
It's sleek.
Like, it's not like super girly and it just feels like - edgy! - I've got a smile on my face like This makes me so happy.
- You're back in your regular clothes.
- I'm back in my regular clothes.
I'm gonna leave you with Antoni.
He's a diva, but you'll be fine.
- Rude! - Alright, bye my love.
- Bye.
- Come back here, come see me.
[ANTONI] So, I was inspired at your place and I thought what I wanna do with you, because it's cheap and cheerful, feeds a crew, - chicken broth ramen.
- Okay.
[ANTONI] So, I'm gonna put you to work, if that's okay? Okay.
So, into the pot, we're actually gonna put sesame oil.
It just adds a nice little, like a nutty, smokiness to it and I get that realistically you can't be making something like this for yourself - every night of the week.
- Right.
But, I think for something special and, like, kind of giving thanks to all of your friends.
It's like, it's a nice thing to sort of share with everybody, right? I'm starting to see that.
- You are? - Yes.
Especially with this whole potluck idea.
Yeah.
I don't like you know like breaking down and being like 'Hey, I do need help', because it just feels weak.
Yes, but there's like an emotional intelligence in being able to be, like, "You know what? I don't have this all on my own and I can't figure it out, and I need your help with this.
" - But that's just me.
What do I know? - [JESS GIGGLES] I just make food.
So, our oil's really hot, so this pork is ready to put in.
And ground pork is super cheap, another "bang for your buck" meal.
and this is going to feed four people.
Perfect.
It's fully cooked through.
- Going to ask you for your help here.
- Oh, okay.
This is so much easier with two people.
See how I just asked for help? Yes.
[LAUGHS] I want her to make something that's super accessible, budget-friendly, and just, like, impress them and be like the queen of her home.
So, we have a ginger, garlic and red chilli paste.
- Do you know what Miso is? - No.
- It's fermented soybean paste.
- Okay.
Chicken stock, 'cause we want to flavor the noodle as well.
Grab a nice big handful and now we'll just try to, like, separate it a little bit.
And these basically take, like, a minute.
All right, we're ready to assemble.
[JESS] Okay.
Oh, my goodness.
A lot of these things are my favorite parts of the soup, - but I think the egg is my most favorite.
- Yep.
- So good.
- Right? [ANTONI] Bru! - Hey.
- Do you want a little snicky-snack? Here you go, buddy.
[JESS GIGGLES] [JESS] I've never been here before.
[KARAMO] The Black Archive is over here, the Jazz Museum, the Negro League Baseball Museum.
- There's an Ethnic Art Gallery.
- Oh, my goodness, that's amazing.
It's the 18th and Vine District.
It, literally, is the cultural epicenter for all things African-American.
Really? Wow.
I've never been here, and I've lived in KC my whole life, basically, minus Lawrence.
Now I'm excited.
- [KARAMO] We are here.
- [JESS] Ooh.
I brought you to the Friends of Alvin Ailey Studio.
- Okay.
- Do you know who Alvin Ailey is? - I don't.
- Alvin Ailey is one of the most prolific African American modern dancers and he established a company that now is revered worldwide.
- Oh, okay.
I'm excited.
- Yeah.
That's my jam, though.
That's my jam.
[UP-TEMPO JAZZ MUSIC PLAYING] Three and one and two, Five, six, seven, eight.
One.
I'm gonna make you learn all this in five seconds! I'm joking.
Good, folks.
That was amazing.
Come on, I want you to meet somebody.
Hey, how are you doing? - I'm good.
- You all are amazing.
- Thank you.
- You're welcome.
- This is my friend, Jess.
- Hi.
- Jess.
- Yes.
So, she's never learned about Alvin Ailey and Alvin Ailey Dance.
Can you tell us a little bit about Alvin Ailey? Yes.
We have classes for about 200 students each week.
Mr.
Ailey believed in this district.
This district really is about excellence, it's about Black excellence and that's why it's important to us to inspire young people, who are our future self.
Yes.
come through for Black excellence.
Jess and I had talked about Black identity and how a lot of times we get messages that tell us that you're not Black enough.
Anybody heard that before? - Yes.
- Okay, yeah.
In middle school I actually went to a predominant Black school.
I was always told I wasn't Black enough, or I'm, like, the "white kid" at my school, because of the way I talk.
It kind of made me sad and kind of made me like doubt myself.
I want Jess to get to a place that she starts to understand there is no one way to be Black.
I grew up in a predominately white studio and a predominantly white school.
Eventually, I just kind of realized that it's okay to love me and love my culture and who I am.
What does it mean to be black? [WOMAN] To be unique.
To love yourself.
To love your natural black melanin, yes.
[LAUGHTER] I want her to meet other black women who are also defying expectations of what it means to be black.
I want her to know that she's not alone in her feelings.
I grew up, like, black girls would, like, want their hair straight and I didn't really notice until, like, I turned, like, a teenager that "No, like these curls are popping.
" [ALL LAUGH] This is me.
I feel really inspired by all of you.
It's really about finding your authentic self.
I think that's really what's most important to us.
Yes.
It's about you loving your identity.
Thank you for that.
I know you all have to go do some more rehearsals.
Do you mind if we hang out here for a little bit? - Oh, no problem, not at all.
- Okay, perfect.
- Thank you.
- Pleasure, alright.
Such a pleasure to meet you all.
Just trust.
Imma be like [LAUGHTER] So, you thought I was gonna make you dance? Yes, I like dancing.
I can tell you are not looking forward to dancing.
I can do a little bit.
- That's it.
- Word.
Me too.
[LAUGHING] So, the reason I brought you in this area, is because a big piece of what's going on with you, is your identity, it's a constant struggle.
Um Seeing these really beautiful women dancing and like, just being, like, themselves and free just, like, I feel bad for I feel awful for not embracing that, 'cause that'd be cool.
I would love to, like, feel like a strong beautiful black woman, - to be the kind of person that can weather anything.
- Yeah.
When you think about it, black people have been through slavery and constant oppression, even today.
And they still find a way to survive and stand tall.
But you are those things.
Why don't you see that yet? Because I am afraid - Yeah.
- that like, maybe I'll come like come here and there will be someone, like a group of people who'll - make me feel like I don't belong.
- Yeah.
Thank you.
- I cry too much.
- No, no, no.
I don't want you to leave here thinking that you have to check one part of your identity because somebody reflected it back to you negatively.
Anything you do is your identity.
A strong, black, lesbian woman.
And if somebody says something to you, you be like I'm a strong, black, - lesbian women.
- Right.
I don't care what you're saying.
- So, dismissed.
- So, dismissed.
- Does that work? - Yeah.
[GROANING HAPPILY] [JESS] The genealogy center.
What is that? I don't know what that means.
It's all to help you to get to a place, where you find out about your identity.
Oh my gosh! It's Bobby.
Wow.
- Milady! - Hi.
How are you? I wanted to bring you to this library that focuses on genealogy, which is the history of one's family.
Where you've come from, your parents, your great-grandparents, - your great-great-grandparents.
- This is really exciting.
Right? Another way to find out a lot about your family is from your family.
[WOMAN WHISPERS] Hi, baby.
Hi.
Wow.
[WOMAN] It's been so long.
I miss you so much.
You know I still love you, girl.
[CHUCKLES] And this is Jamia.
- This is your niece.
- Auntie Jess.
- Don't be scared.
- Oh, my gosh.
- [BABY COOS] - [LAUGHS] She's like, "Wait a minute, you look like my mama.
" - [JESS CHATTERS] - [BABY COOS] [BABY TALK] [LAUGHS] Oh, my goodness.
Yeah, yup! So I've talked to your sister a little bit about your family.
We share a similar history of adoption and siblings that we thought were cousins and but they were sisters.
[EVERYONE LAUGHS] I am in love with this little one.
Happy to see you, it's been a while.
Yes, girl.
Dang.
Starving me.
[LAUGHS] Dude, I want to hang out with you.
Seriously.
- [BABY WHINES] - Oh, yeah, girl? [BOBBY] You let your auntie and mama talk.
You have no idea how much I miss you.
Like for real.
Like, it didn't bother me as much, that you didn't say anything, you know back.
I still wanted to let you know that I was still here because of everything that has gone wrong for you.
It wasn't a pity feeling, it was more or less like, I just want, I just want you, I want you like I want to hug you, I want to be there for you.
I have played out in my head seeing you again and a lot of the times I was just like sad and super apologetic, and you know I felt bad and but right now I'm just really happy.
I'm just like really happy.
It's not, like, weird.
It's not, like, negative, and I don't have to think about like my parents or anything like that, it's just, like - It just feels normal.
- Mm-hm.
So ladies, this is Cheryl.
- Hi, Cheryl.
- Hi there.
She has been so kind as to take the information that you gave me and pulled some information up about your guys' family.
Okay.
What we did was, we've taken your tree back to Civil War times.
So, there's a long line, right there, of history.
So, we have William.
This is actually your great-grandfather and this tells what he did for a living - and where he worked.
- Okay.
This was his mother Sylvie.
She was born in about 1801 to 1805.
- Wow.
- We found where she is buried.
And it's in Arkansas, The Walter's Chapel slave Cemetery.
She died after 1870, so she went through the Civil War and then went on to raise babies, - you know - That's really cool.
Before all of that too.
Those kind of connections just, it establishes a family line, even if you don't know a family line.
And there's a courage, and there's a strength there that runs in your family.
- That's really cool.
- That is awesome.
I'm really inspired by Sylvie, for sure.
Like, she went through an awful time.
And you know she was a mama, and you know she was a grandma - and she went on to have descendants.
- Yeah.
- Just like you.
- Yeah.
You sit here and I'll have you look.
That's your grandpa.
He looks just like you.
It's so wild like seeing all this history.
Yeah.
[BOBBY] A lot of times when people are adopted, they have a sense of rejection and they never really get over that.
- Stop, is this your ring? - Yes.
Girl.
But, watching Jess and Janice reunite, you could see on Jess's face that all that fear of rejection is gone.
If you're free, I'm doing a little dinner party on Friday.
- Really? - If you want to come - Okay.
- Yeah.
- If you have any time.
- I do, actually.
I'll be like "Hey, girl.
" [LAUGHS] Okay.
- [JONATHAN] Hi.
- [JESS]Hi.
- [JONATHAN] How are you? - [JESS] Good.
You're looking gorge, I'm obsessed with everything about you.
I can't even handle it.
Can we take your hair down and look at it? - Yes, absolutely.
- Okay.
So like, wearing like a natural wave in your life is, like, really like "We don't want to do it.
" Or do you want to do it? Are you ever curious about it? - Have you ever done it? - I've never done it.
I used to have really thick, froey hair, and then when I was in middle school, my grandmother permed it.
And then, people stopped bullying me for my hair and started bullying me for being gay.
And so, at least they were like laying off my hair.
And so, like, I guess that's where my comfort level is.
- Yeah.
- Which is why I kept it straight.
Jess never was really allowed to be curious about her hair, because the way that society taught her was that it needed to be, like, straighter and shinier and that's so not fair.
Your face could pull off short-cropped hair, but are you into the idea of having shorter hair? - I am.
- 'Cause I think it would be cute, because then we can get all the perm cut out of your hair and then you can just kinda like move forward fresh.
The hair that's growing out of your head is like a gorgeous, tight texture.
Like little zee, tiny baby textures.
I'm obsessed with her.
And if you wore her wavy and embraced your wave instead of fighting it, it would actually, like, be stunning.
- Okay.
- I really want her see that you don't have to make the choice to subscribe to these false ideas of beauty.
Moisturize this hair right up! I swear.
It's good to have a wide-tooth comb in the shower, so you can comb the conditioner through your hair.
and for your texture of hair, you definitely want to get that in there.
- Okay.
- Are you excited? - Yeah, I'm really excited.
- Cute.
Have you ever had a short haircut before? Sis! I kinda love this.
[BOTH LAUGHING] Whatever your curly lotion is, you want to get it like everywhere.
Then, take your trusty wet brush, and you're gonna comb it through.
Oh my goodness, look at what it did to my hair.
So much easier, right? I love that.
Let me see you.
Oh, my goodness.
Oh my god, look at you, girl.
It's a whole new you.
Look how fem she is! I am I love this.
I can't even Just never imagined my hair doing anything like this.
- Let's do some make-up.
- Okay.
[JONATHAN] This haircut is magic.
Her face is magical.
Her lashes are like this long.
Beautiful.
Like, her lashes are next level.
I feel so, like, confident and, like, sexy.
- Like - Wait, what do you feel? Sexy! - And then what before that? - Confident.
Okay.
So, you're seeing yourself how I see you.
[GIGGLES] Like, this is a strong gorgeous woman, I want to know what she's got.
Thank you.
[HONKING] - Hi.
- [JONATHAN] Hi, queen.
[KARAMO] Look at that gorgeous cut.
Oh, my God, you look so good.
- [BOBBY] Alright, are you ready? - Yeah.
- After you.
- Oh my God.
[JESS] What is this? Is this my house? - Yes, Queen.
- Welcome home.
- Oh my God.
- [BOBBY] See the furniture we picked out? - You like it? - I do see it.
I remember all of this.
Look at the piano.
It's like a completely different space.
[TAN] It's a cool adult space.
[KARAMO] I did not even know you had a fireplace.
[JONATHAN] This is next level.
- Did you know there was a fireplace? - No, I did not.
Bobby, this is snaps.
Oh my gosh, this is amazing.
Thank you so much.
[BOBBY] You can now have proper adult dinner parties.
- Yeah.
- Here's the dishes, the napkins, the napkin rings, the silverware.
- Everything we picked out.
- Oh my goodness.
And in here is where you will cook for them.
I love the blue.
A great way to make a kitchen look new and young and inviting, is just to paint the cabinets, there's no need to spend a ton of money replacing cabinets.
Ready to see more? [GASPS] Oh my [SCREAMS] Oh my God.
This is my room? - This is your room.
- Honey, this closet.
[JESS] This closet! There wasn't room in that little closet to really give you what you needed, so I gave you an open closet.
Oh, my goodness.
I'm just obsessed with it all.
I can't wait to see her new fem-butch look.
- Oh my gosh.
- Yeah.
Alright boys, you ready for this? - Yeah, of course! - Okay.
This is our boss bitch look.
[CHEERING] Who is she? [JONATHAN] This is a huge transformation.
How do you literally feel? I feel like I run it.
Yeah! - It's such a great outfit.
- Yeah.
And I love the confidence on your face.
- I have all the confidence.
- You're so happy.
After you.
Thank you, Sweetheart.
Look at that walk in that heel bitch, get away from me.
[TAN] She looks sexy, she feels sexy.
We won.
Are you ready for the last look? Yeah.
Come on, my love, join us.
She's a racer.
- Love this.
- We love a crop.
Look at the boyfriend jean.
Boyfriend jean looks great on her, this was a full length jacket.
I just cropped it off and frayed it on the ends.
- Of course you did.
- This is an option of the more masculine side, but she still looks cool, she looks fresh.
- Would this be considered Lumber-lesbian? - Lumberjack lesbian? I feel like I'm done with that term.
- Yes.
- Yay.
- Soft butch.
- Yes.
- Soft butch.
- [JONATHAN] I feel like I'm soft butch.
I'm blown away by how fearlessly you embraced this transformation.
Right, exactly.
Like, I feel, like, radiant and beautiful and sexy and confident.
I had it in me, but you all brought it out and I really appreciate it.
I just feel like I had pretty much given up on kind, genuine people.
Like, really, I did, because everyone that I met I feel like they pitied me and they looked down on me and you know, they expected me to be someone else, more black, less white, more gay, less gay.
I had basically just accepted that the real world sucks and family doesn't exist, unconditional love doesn't exist.
But you all just show me that it's beautiful and sexy to, like, care for yourself.
- Yeah.
- You know what I mean? And it's like cute and confident to just be black, and be gay, and be a woman and what that is is me and I'm always that.
Yes.
Bobby, oh my goodness.
I felt connected to you from the beginning and it's inspiring for someone with my background, our background, because it means that like the sky's the limit and you're just like actually a really amazing person.
Thank you for letting me in and allowing me to be a part of your story.
Love you.
You now know your identity.
You know who you are.
Honestly you are a huge, black role model for me.
I look up to you so much.
And to meet you I was really scared.
I was intimidated, because I thought that like everyone else who looked like me, you were just gonna be like She's not enough, she's weird and you were so warm to me and encouraging.
You are Exactly what I want to be, in terms of a black person.
You are yourself and that's beautiful.
It took me my whole life to realize that, and it is just so impactful to me.
I can't tell you how much I love you and appreciate you.
Thank you so much.
Now none of us don't wanna leave you.
Can we get invited to this party? - Surprise, it's just us! - Yay! Let's hug it out.
Let's hug it out.
- Have fun tonight.
- I will.
- You're gonna be great, just be calm.
- I'll miss you.
Have fun.
Bye.
[KARAMO] What are you cooking in there? Smells good.
It's ramen.
Guys, ramen.
Everyone put on whatever toppings you want.
[KARAMO] When I was in college the ramen I cooked, looked nothing like this.
[ANTONI] Tan, can you pour green tea, please? Okay, let's go watch this.
Yeah, let's go watch Jess.
Time for Jess.
- She looks gorgeous.
- I love her in this.
[ANTONI] She's getting everything prepped for her broth.
[KARAMO] Can we just talk about how beautiful that skin and that haircut is? I know, thank you.
Definitely should've done the meat first.
Oh, well.
Forgive me, Antoni.
[ANTONI] Don't be hard on yourself, you're doing great.
You're doing great, Sweetie.
So, hot biker babe it is.
Yes, hot biker babe! - Yeah.
- Oh, she looks great.
I'm here for this.
With her skin, she doesn't need a lot of anything.
I love the little color that you picked too.
[MEN] Aw! I'm so excited.
[JONATHAN] Oh, it's all her friends.
[BOBBY] Look at that cute little family.
Hi.
Oh, my god.
- Oh, my god.
- You look wonderful.
- Oh, God.
- [ALL EXCLAIMING] [GIRL] Look at you.
You look so happy, literally.
I am.
I feel happy.
I feel sexy.
I feel like me, free.
Her smile and energy is that energy and smile that lights up the room.
[BOBBY] Ah, there's Janice.
- Hey.
- [JANICE] You look beautiful.
How are you? This is my sister, Janice.
Hi.
- Oh, my God.
- Janice, this is my fam.
Nice to meet you all.
[BOBBY] They haven't seen each other in years and years and years, but the moment they got together, it was, like, they didn't skip a beat, they were just right back to being sisters.
Wait, the last time that you saw me, my hair wasn't the way that it is.
So [SQUEALS] [LAUGHING] Jess.
Oh, my God! You have a bed.
Oh my god, look at these clothes.
Stop! Jess! I wear these heels and her.
Shut up! [EVERYONE SCREAMS] She likes to go between her masculinity and femininity.
Yeah, which I really like.
I better see that at jazz house! I love these Midwestern queens.
A knife holder.
That's lit.
We've always had this long, drawn out relationship, so - Do you think that it's maybe changing? - Yes.
- Yes.
- Finally.
- [CHASE] I'll take tequila and tonic.
- [JESS] Tequila tonic? Tequila! You really outdid yourself, Jess.
You did.
Look at her over there hosting, being grown.
This week has been the best week of my life.
Honestly and I feel like the strong, beautiful, black lesbian, eclectic, artistic, like, person that, like, all of you all have seen me as.
Well, you all are my family.
[SIGHS] It sucks, 'cause I didn't really know what that meant.
- Yeah.
- And I didn't think it was possible for me.
I thought that at any moment one of y'all would just leave, so I didn't allow myself to be vulnerable.
I didn't allow myself to be open and now that I'm confident in who I am.
Like, I'm not afraid of tears or emotions or messing up or having days where I need to remind myself how strong and beautiful I am.
And I went from being like this lost teenager, who lost her whole family and didn't know where to go, to being like a fierce queen, so [ALL LAUGH] Cheers, queers.
[CHEERING, LAUGHING] [JONATHAN] You're so smart, girl.
I love you and your sponge texture right there looks so nice.
Cheers to Jess, you guys.
To Jess, for being a strong, black, beautiful, lesbian woman! If social anxiety is stopping you from meeting new people or trying new things, find a buddy who can support you in those social situations.
- Are you my buddy? - Yeah.
- You're my buddy? - Yeah.
- This is my buddy.
- Yeah.
Don't mess up my hair, girl.
[LAUGHS]