The Porter (2022) s01e08 Episode Script

Episode 8

Mo! Where were you recruited from Garrett? I was in Wales when that first group started here.
So you were there for the riots? No.
I know we've had our differences but, you know I'm not one of them.
Those kinda people are all kinds of people.
I know you're the fuckin' rat.
Well six hundred.
Well that sounds like a hundred percent.
He wants the money I make from the train, but it belongs to Queenie.
Sell it.
Pay that man and let's get the hell outta here.
See you next week, same time, same place.
This isn't gonna stop, is it? The Irish are already circlin' my numbers game.
I got a proposition for you.
A real partnership.
Fifty-fifty split.
Don't you think you have an obligation to your people? Talk to Moschel.
Convince him to put the porter admission out for a vote.
I heard Garrett has a list of porters who are angling to get into the union.
I'd be very interested in obtaining that list.
How interested? You wanna tell me what you're doing in here, Lucy? Can I say stay here tonight? Be aware as of today the railway no longer requires your services.
You can't do this! Mr.
Miller, I got a wife! My turn.
All the years I've worked for this company, and it don't mean shit.
We followed Zeke, and now we don't got no jobs.
Because the company's got all the power.
What does that have to do with? What, you on the side of the company? What are we gonna do? All right, all right! I know y'all upset.
Upset? We passed upset, Zeke.
How'd Edwards get our names anyhow? Was it Tuffy? No.
I was wrong about him.
Turns out someone else was the rat.
Yeah, well, you were right about one thing, this is bullshit.
The company can't just ship us in, ship us out like we got no say in our own lives.
It's not right.
I'm getting too old and too tired for this shit.
Amen to that.
It's time that we show them we're not gonna roll over like dogs and take it.
- Damn straight.
- What's our next move, Zeke? Well the CBRE has a meeting tomorrow.
I convinced them to put integration up for a vote.
See now, if this goes our way, we'll be protected under the union, and we'll be able to get our jobs back.
You really think the white workers will vote us in? When push came to shove, we stood next to them.
Now I'm just gonna tell those boys it's time for them to do the same.
You wanna know what kind of sandwiches we're having? Show up to the meeting.
And don't be late, I need to get out of there early.
Get to work.
I heard there was an interesting addition to your agenda.
Perhaps the porters will be able to help you with those bags after you vote them in.
They're quite adept at the more menial tasks.
Maybe you're right.
I mean, why keep 'em locked in a boxcar when you can put 'em to work, right? At any rate, I was merely pointing out that the vote may close the divide between the tasks assigned to Negroes and those reserved for your men.
I represent the members.
It's up to them to decide.
Of course.
I simply want to ensure they're making an informed decision as to what they stand to lose and what they stand to gain.
What did you have in mind? Now I know I'm 'bout the last man you wanna see right now, but I got something that needs sayin'.
Because of you, everyone thinks I'm a rat.
So you knocking on every door and giving everyone the same speech? I already told them.
I'm gonna make this right, Tuffy.
For you and for them.
The deal's off.
Come again? You, me and the numbers ain't happening.
I don't think you've thought this through.
Actually, that's all I've been thinking about.
You see, the way I see it, I work for you, you own me.
I leave town and there's just another white man who thinks he owns me.
So, the deal is off.
Are you forgetting that I'm your superior? What you gonna do, ding me? Well, you leave me no choice but to go speak to our employer.
I already did.
And you gotta explain where you got all that extra money.
And you got the ledgers, too.
Kinda looks to me like you've been running numbers.
Bet I can get a couple of the porters to say the same thing.
You think he's gonna take a porter's word over mine? Who the fuck do you think you are? Nothing.
You have no idea what I am.
Get away from me.
I said get away from me! Well, look who it is.
Oh, Woman 3: I can't believe she would show her face around here again.
Me too.
I agree with you.
Y'all keep it down over there.
Oh my God.
Don't do, don't Don't touch me.
I'm just trying to help, Fay.
No, I don't want you to touch me.
Fayanna, you need to go to the hospital.
Come on.
You're not scared being seeing with me? Just let me take you to the hospital, please! Wouldn't want anybody to think you're one of us.
You didn't want to be with me.
Fay, I'm sorry.
But I am not gonna leave you.
Marlene, are you my friend? Yes.
- I don't feel good.
- So just let me take care of you.
I can't - No, no, no, no, no! - Okay.
Marlene! - Oh shit.
- Come on.
I can't Wait, I can't go like this.
Here, put this Help me put this on.
Now where's your slippers? On my side chair.
Where have you been? Stopped by the boarding house.
You stopped by there on the way to getting your job back? It's not that simple.
You never should've signed that fool's book in the first place.
So I don't care what you have to do, crawl, beg, sell your soul Sell my soul? To those white devils down at the station? Work like a slave for a fraction of what they get.
Every time I step on that train I leave my dignity on that platform, and I'm sick of it! Hey, hey, hey.
Hey, look, I know it's gonna be hard.
But Gwen, you gotta trust me I'm pregnant.
I'm pregnant.
I didn't wanna say anything until I got past my first trimester.
Woo! Oh wait, wait.
Is everything okay? So far.
Midwife says as, as long as I keep off my feet and drink this nasty smelling tea every day.
Hey, let me make that.
Really? Yeah, you sit.
I got you.
It's gotta stop now, Winn.
The disappearing, not coming home at night, it's all gotta stop.
Hey, whatever I gotta do to take care of my babies, it's done.
Popsy! I got the costume back you wanted so bad.
What are you doing here? Told Popsy I wanted a word with ya.
He said he'd find a way to get you here.
You know, I didn't even think you'd show up.
Thought you'd be halfway to your fresh start by now.
Or was that a lie too? - I never lied to you.
- Don't you play me, Lucy! I know you gave that list to Edwards.
But I didn't lie! I said I needed a way to my dream and I found one.
Twenty-two men got fired because of you! Because of you, Zeke.
I may be chasing a dream, but you're chasing a fantasy.
I told you to stop with all this union shit before someone got hurt.
But you wouldn't listen.
Even after they burned up the garden, you didn't wanna see the truth.
You know, there's a difference between being fed and feedin' off of others.
You see, in this community, we-we look after each other.
And here I thought you and I was family.
Family? When I was rotting away on the back row, you ever once tell Popsy I deserved to be up front? You ever put my name in front of any of those big shots who ride your train every day? I work on my feet all day, then walk for an hour, just to sleep on a cot next to a mother who's been calling me trash my whole life.
So because you had it bad, that gives you a reason to put those men and they families on the bread line? Someone's always gonna profit off our backs.
Better me than them.
Broke my heart, Lucy-Mae.
How'd it go? I had a meeting with the Irish.
They're gonna send some enforcers make it look like a rival hit.
When's this going down? Tonight.
Tonight? But I can't be anywhere near this, Junior.
It's gotta look like I stepped into the throne, not like I took it.
How's your side? Conductor didn't take too kindly to his payroll being cut off.
Oh, he gonna be a problem? Nah, ain't nothing we can't handle.
We're almost there.
One more step.
You got this.
I'm dizzy.
Oh, fuck.
Oh, just have a seat, please.
Let's just cover this up.
How you doing, you okay? You okay? Excuse me, nurse.
My friend needs some help, please.
You don't look so good, sweetheart.
I feel about as good as I look.
How long have you been feeling like this? A day, two maybe, I I usually keep an eye on her, but I was She got locked up.
She needs to see a doctor right away, please.
- I'll get someone.
- Thank you.
I'm hot.
Mm-mm, mm-mm, mm-mm.
Try to relax.
No titties in the hospital.
Oh, Marlene, I'm gonna go talk to that doctor myself.
You wait, right No, no, no.
Don't leave.
I'm right here.
Don't leave.
Telegram for you, sir.
Thank you, Mr.
Sticks? We have a situation.
You niggers have taken enough from us.
No! What the fuck'd you do, man? What the fuck'd you do? All right, Garrett.
Floor is yours.
Gentlemen, you know why I'm here.
We work side by side every day.
Same long hours, same low pay, and same poor working conditions.
So the question isn't why the porters wanna get into the union, it's why you should let us in.
Now, like many of you, I served in the Great War.
And I saw some things there that, uh, still keep me up at night.
But nothing that I saw on the battlefield was worse than what I witnessed in Wales.
The favourite few got sent home while the rest of us were left with nothing.
Too many men, not enough rations.
Spanish Flu was tearing through the camps, and things got ugly real fast.
Black soldiers were bashed, beaten, pistol whipped and choked.
Those riots left soldiers on both sides of the colour line with scars.
And I am ashamed to admit that I thought I had to fight the man next to me to survive.
But I realize now that I shouldn't have been looking to my left and to my right for someone to blame.
I should have been looking up to the people that sent us there to die.
Make no mistake, gentlemen, we are at war.
But the porters are not your enemy.
The company is.
When we fight for scraps, they profit.
When we turn our backs on each other, they cheer.
And when we fail to realize our power as workers, they win! Gentlemen, I'll say it again, we are at war.
But if you bring the porters in, then we can fight them together.
And that is a fight that labour can win.
Thank y'all for your time.
Who told you where I live? Corrine finally caved and gave me your address.
That sneaky little bitch! No, no, no.
It-it wasn't like that.
It wasn't out of spite, it was more out of pity.
She could see how desperate I was to see you.
Well, you see me.
We done now? Lucy, I don't wanna be the man who stands in the way of you and your dreams.
I want to be the man who helps them come true.
And I told my father as much when I asked him to release my trust fund so I could invest in the salon for you.
I thought you'd be excited.
No more broken promises.
Luce, this is-this is going to happen.
It's all set up with Sawyer tomorrow night.
There's a few other acts, but you, Lucy-Mae, are-are the main event.
I can't believe you did all that for me.
You're going to be great.
And this time I will be right in the front row watching you.
Steven? Steven? Was it even close? For a minute.
And then Moschel told us about a talk he had with the company.
He said the company's gonna pay us an extra fifteen bucks a month, and a personal guarantee from Edwards that the higher positions will remain for white workers only.
Nice speech though.
Operator, connect me to the Immigration Minister.
Scott, my dear friend! How is Alice? Happy to hear it.
Listen, I'm calling with a delicate matter.
It seems a few of the porters you helped me bring in had some rotten apples in the bunch.
Yeah, Bolsheviks, worse than vermin.
I could really use your special skills.
How quickly can you help me clear the weeds from my tracks? Ain't using what you got going on? I always saw myself dying on silk sheets in a hotel room of Paris, riding some fine ass young Parisian man all the way to heaven, Marlene.
Fay, you hush that talk.
What? The dying or the sex? Doctor's gonna be here any minute.
Doctor! That's what I like about you, Marlene.
You're always seein' the best in people, even when your eyes tell a different story.
I'll be right back.
Fay, I've got something that'll make you feel better.
This is gonna prick a little.
All right, I'll take the front, you cover the back of the stairs.
Let's go.
I got it.
I got it.
Can I trust the porter's aim? I worked the rifle unit of the 23rd Battalion, never missed a shot.
Are you sure you don't wanna get outta here? I've never run from a man in my life.
Ain't about to start now.
How'd you know the Irish were gonna be here? Overheard some men talking on the train about territory, taking the throne.
I put two-and-two together.
I know my math, and that doesn't sound like it adds up.
When you work on the trains long enough you pick up on some things.
I knew he was Irish 'cause of his accent.
I knew he was mob 'cause he wore gold.
And you think I needed your protection? Queenie, if we gonna keep working together, then you have to start trusting me.
Where are they? Where'd they go? How many more? How many more? Go, go, go, go, go! Break it down! Open it.
Shit! Fuck! Fucking hell.
This is my house, motherfucker! Who set this up? I know exactly who set this up.
Where's, uh, Mr.
Edwards? Uh, you his driver? I'm a friend of Junior's.
I don't have time for this.
You know, whatever Mr.
Massey's paying you for this, uh, I'll give you double.
Triple it.
I'll leave town.
I'll leave town, you'll never see me again.
What time is it? - What? - The time.
You got a watch? Oh, yeah.
It's, uh, it's 10:15.
Why? That's when the express train pulls into the station.
A train? For me? For me.
Dear Brother Garrett, I was very pleased to receive your letter about your continued pursuit of integration for the porters into the union.
I wish to make it clear you have my full support and counsel, should you need them.
Until that time, I offer these words by Frederick Douglass that my father once shared with me, in hopes they sustain you on the journey.
"If there is no struggle, there is no progress.
"This struggle may be a moral one, "or it may be a physical one, but it must be a struggle.
"If we ever get free from the oppressions and wrongs "heaped upon us, "we must pay for their removal.
"We must do this by labour, "by suffering, "by sacrifice, "and if needs be," "by our lives and the lives of others.
" Come on, Franklin.
You're drinking away the profits.
Fuck off Sawyer.
Ah, I guess you're entitled to a little misery.
Your father disowning you is one thing, but it's pretty damn awful when even the niggers don't want you.
What did you say? Let him go! - You'll kill him! - Get off me! - Get off him! - No! The only thing I hate more than you is that yappy fucking dog.
Get out of my way! You know, funny thing about the Irish.
They never take the train.
They think it's bad luck.
It's been a while since I did this myself.
Sticks usually handles it.
Here's to Montreal, Mr.
I guess the best man won.
I want a real partnership Queenie.
Fifty-fifty split.
People think a good partners dance is all about skill, but it's actually about trust, mainly how much they have for each other.
Well, I know my worth Miss Queenie.
I believe you do too.
So are you ready to hang up the porter suit? Are you kidding me? The suit is my advantage.
They'll never see me coming.
What seems to be the problem officer? Nice car like this, it's hard to believe that you have a problem in the world.
We got a report that this car was stolen.
You smuggling booze? I'm gonna take a look in the back.
Sit tight.
I didn't tell you to get out of that car.
I said get back in the car.
A man beats Spanish Flu and the bottle only to die like a dog.
It's a devil of a thing.
It's a shame you weren't able to meet with him, sir.
What do you mean? Sir, did you not read yesterday's messages? "Urgent", from Ruben Miller.
"Need to explain about Junior Massey.
" Come on.
Oh, what is with all the secrecy? Shh.
Right there.
I don't understand.
That's your new clinic, Mar.
I put a down payment on it.
Without asking me? You ain't never heard of a surprise, woman? Hm? Put some chairs right there for the waiting room.
In the back where the big oven used to be, that's where you'll take care of your patients.
But how? I fixed it, Mar.
Everything we want, everything we need.
We can have it right here.
I believe this is for you.
I was thinking, Mrs.
Massey, if I may be so bold as to think, that I could build you a little shelf right here.
A case there to put your herbs in, that light can come on in, the light of God you been talkin' about.
You happy? Yes.
And I'm happy.
Now, I think back there we can get some of your magic tonics, and that kitchen right there, it's small but with Zeke's help we could spread it out.
This is gonna be good for you.
It's gonna be really good for you.
I know we all got a lot of reasons to be at the bottom of a bottle right now, but, uh I got a baby on the way.
And that's worth raising a glass! Congrats.
Thank you.
Now hold on.
I feel sorry for Gwen.
I mean, we don't call you "big-head Barnes for nothin'.
" Come on boys, next round's on me.
Thanks Pops.
'Cause I know some of y'all can't afford it.
You all right, Winn? She's never got this far along before, my wife.
Three pregnancies not one.
Now it looks like we're finally gonna have a family and I have no idea how I'm gonna support 'em.
Some timing, huh? I feel like a damn fool.
I know what it's like out there.
I don't know what I was thinking.
Hey Winn, come on, man.
Breathe, breathe, breathe, breathe.
Come on, come on, breathe.
Atta boy.
Sorry, I don't know, I don't know why I did that.
Stay here, I'll go back.
I'm comin' for you and your money.
Come here and lose your money.
Let me give you a little warning before me take all your money, baby.
Junior Massey.
Yessir! Gentlemen, mmmmm.
Least you could do is smoke a decent brand.
They're Parisian.
They're supposed to be all the rage.
No wonder Marlene put you outside.
And what you mean "put me outside"? How a king gwan get put out him own castle? When di queen decide that she nuh want you fi stink up the house.
True that.
Come on, I'm heading to Popsy's.
Thought you might wanna throw a few back with the fellas.
Seeing as Mr.
Winny gonna be a daddy.
- What the hell you say? - Mmhmm.
Hope he's got his mama's head.
All right, boys, enjoy the game on me.
- Let's go.
- All right.
Save me some chicken.
All right, you got it.
He's gonna be a dad? So you sticking around then? Mmhmm.
Hey, how the hell you manage to pull that off? You know me my brother, I always find a way.
Yeah, but you usually running to me for help.
Yeah, well, I'm done running.
All right then, Junior Massey.
Glad you sticking around all the same.
I can't leave you, my brother, you're my boy! Sorry about that, sir.
My mistake.
You get a look? Yeah, that's him.
Ma'am, this man is a unmarried man looking for a wife.
How you doing, ma'am.
Are you sure? That's the man that killed your brother? That's him.
Haha! We gonna get you married! We gonna get you married, man.
Come on, man.
How y'all doin'? Where the main man? Winny gotta baby, baby.
Congratulations, Winn.
And I don't mean to steal the spotlight from the man of the hour, but I just wanted to run an idea by you fellas.
Now what you think about starting our own union? A union for the porters.
We could do that? Well, I ain't sayin' it's gonna be easy.
We need a majority of the porters on board, an organizing committee, and a, a list of demands.
I'd say higher wages should be first on your list.
White workers make three times what we do.
And we should be paid for dead-heading.
If I gotta spend the whole night on an empty train, - I should be paid, right? - That's right.
And I'ma put that on the list.
You know back in the war, brothers used to work as cooks and attendants in the dining car.
I wouldn't mind being a cook in the kitchen.
Nigger you'd burn the whole place down.
He ain't lying.
But we do deserve a shot at somethin' better than porter-in-charge.
Get rid of demerits! The right to an impartial hearing if you get fired, right? And more than three hours sleep on a twenty-one hour shift.
- Yeah.
- All right.
How about seniority? I mean, some of us have been working the line as long as you've been alive.
So Zeke, you got a name for this union? Mm.
How about "The Order of Sleeping Car Porters"? What y'all think? To The Order of Sleeping Car Porters.
I knew you'd like it.
To The Order of Sleeping Car Porters.
To The Order of Sleeping Car Porters.
To The Order of Sleeping Car Porters.
To The Order of Sleeping Car Porters.

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