Coffee Blues


S1 E5 Coffee Blues

Coffee Blues

"Coffee Blues"
Written by Jennifer Schuur
Directed by Greg Yaitanes

In the wake of Joni’s abduction and Mac’s revelation, Joni and Mac settle back into their lives. After making love for the first time since Mac's discovery of Joni’s infidelity, the two appear to be wholly reconciled.

At Joni’s urging, Mac swallows his pride and asks his father for a loan of $4,000. His dad gets upset, assuming Mac is mixed up in gambling or drugs. Mac starts to storm off, but his dad stops him: “Let me see what I can do.”

Tommy is set on the idea that Mac is somehow connected to Cliff’s death. Fishing for a potential lead, Tommy visits Sandy and asks if the name “Joni Conway” rings a bell. It doesn’t, but Sandy adds that she knows Cliff “got around” the newspaper office.

A mob of angry white men surrounds the school bus taking students, including Arthur’s son Marcus, to the desegregated school. A man breaks open the bus door and drags one of Marcus’ friends off the bus, viciously beating him.

Hearing of the incident, Mac is wracked with guilt. He feels he should do more to help Ruth and her children now that Arthur is dead. Joni tries to comfort him, but their conversation is interrupted when The Broker pulls up to the house.

To Mac’s surprise, The Broker takes him to a party in a remote setting, on an old plantation. When Mac asks why The Broker brought him along, The Broker points out a heavy-set man and tells Mac to kill him, adding, “Before you do, you’ve gotta ask him where he buys his pants.” When Mac makes to carry out the order, The Broker starts laughing. He was joking -- Mac is there to have a good time.

Babysitting Marcus and his sister Lou while Ruth works a late shift at the diner, Joni uses a game of hide and seek as an excuse to snoop around the house in search of Arthur’s hidden money. Marcus catches her looking through his dad’s closet. Joni quickly apologizes but doesn’t reveal her motives. Later that night, Marcus and Ruth pay attention when a TV news anchor announces a man by the name of Eugene Linwood is under arrest for the attack on Marcus’ friend.

Mac wanders through the main house on the plantation, having lost track of The Broker. Unseen, Mac finds The Broker meeting with a group of men conducting what appears to be a business transaction. Suddenly, Mac’s recurring hallucination of a figure in a mask bursts into sight and Mac panics, sprinting out of the house. The Broker and Mac reconnect in the early hours of the morning, neither giving any indication they saw the other in the house.

At a diner, The Broker questions Mac about what Joni knows. Mac asks for his own explanation of The Broker's connection to Suggs. The Broker relents and explains: Suggs raped a 13-year-old girl, and her father sought out The Broker to dole out justice. With that, The Broker adds a slab of butter to his black coffee.

The Broker returns Mac home and deducts $1,000 from his debt for attending the party. At his front door, Mac finds an envelope with $100 bill and a note from his dad: “Hope this helps.” Dodging Joni’s questions about what happened with The Broker, Mac pours himself a cup of coffee, dropping butter into the