As the season finale of From G’s to Gents opens, Cee is picking a fight with Creepa and Shotta because they both voted for him in last week’s elimination ceremony. Both Creepa and Shotta try to talk to Cee, but he tells them to just leave him alone and that he’s in this for himself now. Wasn’t everyone in it for themselves the whole time? Isn’t the definition of reality TV that everyone is in it for themselves always. Is it possible to go on a reality TV show to be in it for other people? Even the contestants on Oprah’s Big Give were in it for themselves, and despite this show’s better nature, it is no Oprah’s Big Give. What I’m saying is shut up, Cee. Creepa even tells Cee that the only reason he voted for him was because he thought that Cee had a lot to go home to, to which Cee petulantly screams “No, I don’t, I don’t have anything to go home to.” SPOILER ALERT: that will prove too bad for Cee halfway through the episode.
The thing about Cee’s outburst is that it genuinely seems so ungentlemanly. I’m not going to nitpick about the validity of this show’s cultural reprogramming or whether or not there are strict rules for how “a gentleman” must act, particularly in a moment of stress. But there are pretty obvious guidelines for how to be successful on this show. And even if everyone on the show is a traditional reality TV bullshit artist, then they should at least act like bullshit gentlemen. Anyway, the next morning Cee apologizes to everyone for getting angry. And it’s to both Shotta and Creepa’s credit that they hug Cee and accept his apology. It is to Cee’s credit that…no, nothing is to Cee’s credit.
As a reward for making it to the final three, everyone takes a helicopter ride around Los Angeles and then they meet Mr. Bentley for lunch. After some small talk about how great helicopter rides are, Mr. Bentley asks everyone individually what they think their biggest weakness is. Creepa says that his biggest weakness is always trying to help everybody. Mr. Bentley not only disagrees, he pulls out a giant dictionary. He has selected a word for each of the three G’s. Creepa’s word is “goon,” obvs. Mr. Bentley explains the negative connotations of the word, and Creepa replies that when he looked the word up it didn’t have any negative connotations, it just said “someone who is hired to destroy enemies.” Really, Creepa? I mean, it would be fine if he just had an understanding of what goon was supposed to mean based on the way it was used colloquially in his social circle. But he looked it up? In what dictionary, and what color pen was it written in?
Cee’s word is “integrity,” as in “Cee has no integrity.” This would be a fine moment in a show about self-improvement in which the contestants are confronted with their own self-imposed hurtles, except that Cee has to fake cry. Always with the fake crying. Apparently the first thing you learn when you go to the Con Artist Academy is how to fake cry everytime anyone says anything to you ever.
Shotta’s word is “complacency.” Mr. Bentley feels that Shotta needs to start making opportunities happen for himself. Sure. No more sitting around waiting to be cast in a reality show. After this reality show, I mean. This is the last reality show that he just sits around waiting to be cast in. After this it’s time to get serious about going out and finding the reality show yourself, Shotta.
In order to help Mr. Bentley with his important decision, Sean, E6, T-Jones, Stan, and D-Boy return. This is supposedly bad for Cee because of how he “conned” all of them (i.e. he fake cried whenever they said his name), but it turns out that they don’t actually have the power to eliminate anyone, so it’s kind of a non-starter. Whoever gets the most votes out of the five is safe from elimination, not eliminated. Creepa gets the most votes, and Mr. Bentley takes little time in eliminating Cee. Aww. Cee seems like a decent enough guy, and as he leaves he promises Mr. Bentley that he’s going to take what he learned in the “club” back home and be a success for his daughter, which would be great if he didn’t then proceed to start faking crying again. Always with the fake crying, this guy. If he wants to be a success for his daughter he should open up a fake tears factory and corner the fake tears market with his fake tears distributorship. He’ll own a fleet of refrigerated fake tears trucks and other fake tears jokes that go with this metaphor.
For the final elimination ceremony, Shotta and Creepa must deliver formal speeches on what it means to them to be a gentleman and how they plan on carrying on the gentlemanly tradition in their regular lives. But first, they get new suits and haircuts. Shotta goes with a classic clip on look, for the gentleman on the go.
Creepa, having already given up his grill and his sunglasses (“hater-blockers”), decides that if he’s serious about becoming a better person, it’s time for a real change, and cuts off all his hair.
Their speeches, like many moments on this show, are genuinely two of the best moments I’ve seen on TV in a long time. You can never take reality TV too seriously, but it seems like genuinely good-natured people being uncharacteristically open and sincere in an effort, yes, to win 100,000 dollars, yes, but also to just prove to themselves and the world that they can be the best Shottas and Creepas they can be.
In the end, Creepa is welcomed into the exclusive Gentleman’s Club. But Fonzworth Bentley wants to help make Shotta’s dream of owning his own barbershop a reality, so he’s going to pay for Shotta to go to barber school. And in the spirit of this show I’m not even going to point out that obviously it’s the producers who are doing that and not Fonzworth Bentley, because a gentleman doesn’t point out such things. But seriously, this show turned out to be such a pleasant surprise. It definitely did more than its fair share of race baiting and stereotype promoting, but in the end its heart was mostly in the right place. I even kind of half-like and respect Fonzworth Bentley now. He’s a foppish untalented man clown, yes, but a foppish untalented man clown with a heart of gold.
Gentlemen, a toast!