Power Book III: Raising Kanan Season 3 Episode 4 Review: In Sheep’s Clothing

Spoilers

Remember when I said Ronnie would be a problem last week?

Well, yes. It’s becoming abundantly clear that Ronnie’s single-minded focus on getting back into the game and not accepting any disrespect could set him on a collision course with his brother and everyone that gets in his way.

If Power Book III: Raising Kanan Season 3 Episode 4 taught us anything, it’s that Ronnie is on a mission and no one is safe.

Since Ronnie showed up, his stoic and quiet nature has been off-putting and curious, but in recent weeks, we’ve started to see the violence behind his quiet nature.

You’d be well within your rights to refer to him as a silent assassin because that’s what he is. He doesn’t say much, but what he does say holds meaning and value, and when he strikes, it’s hushed but no less deadly.

Ronnie’s been bidding his time since he returned to town, but he’s lost all patience waiting for Unique, especially since seeing him with Raq.

Ronnie Mathis does not appear to be a man who sees reason. He sees what is right in front of him, and he reacts accordingly. Unique has told him Raq is out of the game, as have others, but he’s either unwilling to believe or doesn’t care to.

It’s obvious he still sees Raq as a threat. Someone whom he should have dealt with back in the day.

And since he views her that way, he’s lumped Unique right in with her, choosing now to go behind his back to find his own business.

While I can appreciate Ronnie’s ambition, his failure to think before acting may work for now, but it could eventually come back to bite him because he’s dealing with a particular group of people.

Take Deen, for example. He doesn’t even mess with Unique like that anymore, but Ronnie came to his territory trying to intimidate him, and he immediately went back to Unique to let him know.

Now, it ended up costing Deen his life in the end, but more than anything, it tipped Unique off to what was happening behind his back. He told Ronnie to chill and wait for his plan to come to fruition, and Ronnie did his own thing instead.

How long until Unique finds out about Pop and Snaps? Or even worse, what happens if he finds out Ronnie went to Joaquin and Juliana?

If the end of Power Book III: Raising Kanan Season 3 Episode 3 was any indication, we will eventually see Ronnie in the Raq and Kanan orbit. Perhaps sooner than later.

But right now, it looks like we should be getting Unique versus Ronnie because it’s pretty obvious these two were never on the same page and only getting further apart.

Ronnie’s more than willing to throw his brother under the bus, and don’t think it escaped me his admission to Joaquin and Juliana that if Unique was a problem, they could handle it.

And I don’t think Ronnie knows how to joke, so he meant that full throttle.

Plus, there’s the whole Unique calling Ronnie out. And when Ronnie gets slighted, he immediately sees red.

You know what? You ain’t shit, Ronnie. You ain’t shit.

Unique

I could get behind this beef, as it’ll help shade in Ronnie more and truly cement him as the new big bad. Not every season needs a fully-formed villain, but there needs to be a form of resistance coming from somewhere.

Kanan and Raq can’t continually get everything they want. No one can. Who wants to watch a series where nothing ever goes wrong, and everyone always gets their way?

If Ronnie can find his way, it’ll be fascinating to see what he does with the money and power he could potentially amass. Does he eclipse Unique? Does he still look to take out Raq even though she’s not checking for him?

There are a lot of possibilities here with Ronnie now that he’s made a significant move.

Speaking of major moves, Raq Thomas has lost her mind.

Well, maybe not lost her mind, but she surely has decided that she’s willing to do anything to protect Kanan, which would be admirable any other time she wasn’t actively lying and attempting to manipulate him simultaneously.

Trying to deconstruct Raq’s motives and justify or condemn them could be a worthy exploration if given enough time. Still, I fear most would come to the same conclusion: while protecting her son, she’s also pushing him further and further away.

Raq loves Kanan. That’s never been up for debate, and it still isn’t. She wants to protect him, but the reality is that she put Kanan in harm’s way the second she committed herself to the life.

As an extension of her, Kanan could become collateral damage at any moment, and now that he’s older and has gotten a taste of the life, he’s only increased his profile and put himself in dangerous situations.

Even so, nothing will stop a mother from protecting their child, no matter the age or the circumstance. But Raq has time and time again shown a lack of regard for Kanan’s feelings and intelligence and put him in positions that do the opposite of keeping him protected.

With Kanan’s business taking off, he was finally at a place where he seemed to feel genuinely comfortable this season. He’s hellbent on stepping out of Raq’s shadow and doing things independently, and this was the first time he saw some success.

It was a quick but noteworthy scene, seeing Kanan and Jukebox out to dinner, allowing themselves an evening to indulge and celebrate joy. If only for a night, they got to be happy, feel that happiness, and share it with someone they loved.

So, of course, Raq had to come along and ruin it.

All Raq has wanted is for Kanan to come home, and by planting the gun in his backpack, she forces his hand and makes him depend on her.

Kanan: Ma, that gun ain’t mine.
Raq: Why would I ever believe you, Kanan? You don’t live at home no more. You got new friends. And we don’t even talk. I can’t believe you because I don’t even know you.

Raq was something else in that principal’s office, pulling out every trick in the book to show her disappointment. Honestly, give Raq all the awards for that show she put on because Kanan had no clue she was behind anything.

I’m not sure Raq knew exactly how everything would play out, but she knew that she could at least force Kanan to come home. And that’s precisely what she did.

None of Raq’s actions are surprising at this point because she does whatever she wants to and then deals with the consequences later. But perhaps the biggest mistake she made was trusting Famous to keep his mouth shut.

There are so many questions to ponder when watching a prequel story like this, namely: how do established characters like Kanan and Jukebox transform into the ones we know? But there are also lingering questions about the characters we’re meeting for the first time.

Since Power Book III: Raising Kanan Season 1, Famous has been Kanan’s closest friend outside Jukebox. And while the two have always had each other’s backs, the cracks have been forming this season.

And getting paid off by Raq could be the thing that drives them apart forever if Kanan finds out he knew about the gun.

My gut says Kanan will find out eventually, and if that were to happen, I could see Kanan going nuclear. Because while it’s a move he probably wouldn’t even be surprised Raq made, it would devastate him to know Famous’s silence could be bought.

Having Kanan back home meant Raq had to dead things with Unique, which makes sense, but damn, their relationship was just taking flight. I’m not going to pretend they were in love or anything, but there was a deep sense of respect and admiration flowing through that relationship.

They enjoyed one another, and I think the most interesting thing was how open they were with each other. They weren’t sharing all their innermost thoughts and secrets, but there was a line of trust there that meant they could share many things.

Without that, Raq literally has no one. Not really. Kanan may be home, but changing his address won’t change his feelings for Raq, especially as it takes him away from the business he built.

And she has Marvin and Jukebox, but they have new things to occupy their time.

Even though the hour ended with a murder, it was hopeful in different ways, with Marvin and Lou-Lou teaming up and Jukebox making it into the girl band.

I’m all about Lou-Lou finding happiness away from Raq. Still, I hope they continue to have Lou-Lou integrated in other ways with the family, so the Café Vous storyline isn’t isolated from everything else.

Bringing in Marvin was a smart idea for Lou-Lou because they have more money to invest together, and they can really cultivate the club into what they want it to be. It’s an investment for the whole family and their future.

Now, will Marvin keep his promise to keep the club clean? I have doubts because it would be so easy to use the club to help push product through, like Marvin said. And Marvin sometimes gets in over his head with things.

Elsewhere, Howard’s got his hands all over the place trying to help Kanan and himself. But the most important thing he did during the hour was establish a boundary with Raq.

It’s been a popular thing for the men in Raq’s life this season. In trying to get some space from Raq, they’re trying to stay out of her wicked web. For Howard, he’s willing to help Kanan, and he’s proven that, but Raq brings another level of chaos he can’t handle.

Everything Else You Need To Know

  • Juliana was definitely interested in what Ronnie had to offer. Would she go behind Joaquin’s back to strike up a deal?
  • Jukebox making the band was such a sweet moment. Everything is falling into place with her right now, and I’m so nervous to watch it eventually all fall apart.
  • Snaps and Pop made a great first impression. They’re “out” of the game, yet one 5-minute conversation has them giving up money, so I expect they’ll be right in the thick of things moving forward.
  • Gerald’s going to use his position as the editor at that magazine to help Café Vous, isn’t he?
  • Deen’s murder with his grandmother sitting in the next room was chilling.

We have approached the midseason point of Power Book III: Raising Kanan Season 3, which is insane, and there are so many threaded storylines right now.

I’m expecting big things as the season progresses, and I can’t wait to hear all your thoughts on this hour and what’s to some. So, please jump into the comment section and let me know what you’re thinking!  

Whitney Evans is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on X.

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