Tia Mowry, Loretta Devine and Anthony Alabi on ‘Family Reunion’ part 3: ‘A wonderful time’
EXCLUSIVE: The cast of the hit Netflix series says that part three will dive into the importance of being vulnerable and seeking therapy in the Black community
Tia Mowry, Loretta Devine and Anthony Alabi are back and better than ever in Family Reunion part three.
The three cast members, who star as Cocoa McKellan (Mowry), M’Dear (Devine) and Moz McKellan (Alabi) respectively, told theGrio that the upcoming episodes of the hit Netflix series will tackle several important topics, including emotional vulnerability.
In one particular episode, Cocoa encourages Moz to be open about his grief with his children and references his therapy sessions, telling him that allowing his children to see him cry is a good thing. Alabi says that including that moment was significant and necessary for viewers, especially those in the Black community.
“I think for a long time in the Black culture, it’s been kind of a faux pas to not go to therapy, or that there was something wrong with you if you needed to talk to someone—where you couldn’t handle something mentally,” the actor 40-year-old actor explained. “I think it was really important—and I think the writers saw this—to show that someone, even with Moz’ stature, being a ballplayer, being a dad and a husband, that sometimes you need a little help. Sometimes things are overwhelming and that’s okay.”
He continued, “I think that was the biggest thing is showing that you don’t have to be a brick wall all the time. It can be something where it’s like, ‘Listen, this hurts. I don’t really know how to digest it and I might need some help.'”
“Saying that, especially in the black culture, is all right because I think for the longest, we’ve had to be so strong and so strong-willed and powerful that we forget—at the end of the day—that you’re a human being. You need to be able to let out whatever you need to let out or talk through whatever you need to in order to have balance.”
Mowry, 42, piggy-backed off Alabi’s comment, adding that seeing that foundation within a marriage was especially “beautiful.” The Tia’s Quick Fix host has been open in the past about her real-life journey balancing family and self-care.
“I think within that moment, what was so beautiful was seeing that there is a support system within the wife as well,” she explained about Cocoa’s comments to Moz. “Because a lot of it stems from not feeling supported, or ‘Am I going to be supported?’ And to have the significant other guide and say, ‘You know what, this is okay, and it’s especially okay to do it in front of me and in front of your kids.'”
Devine’s character, M’Dear, has her own standout moment this season. The family matriarch gets a full musical episode devoted to her backstory and younger years, which includes a stint as a performer and singer in New York City. Having started her career on Broadway in the 1970s, Devine says that the episode was particularly memorable for her.
“It was just a wonderful experience,” the 71-year-old Hollywood icon shared. “It reminded me of when I started out in the entertainment world and everything, so that part of it was really great. This season, we’re getting a chance to do so many musicals, and therefore, we got a chance to do a lot of singing and dancing, which is something I absolutely love. So it was a wonderful time for me this season.”
Family Reunion part three will be available to stream on Netflix on Monday, April 5.
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