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Things get Under’hand’ed in Mohawk Girls!

This week’s episode of Mohawk Girls is jam-packed, so I apologize now for the length of this recap. However,  whilst depicting a celebration this episode actually deals with a very serious and ongoing contentious issue. So, first a bit of background before we get to the “meat” of it (sorry, I couldn’t resist).

The title of this week’s episode “Marry Out Get Out” refers to a  band policy that still exists in Kahnawa:ke. In short, since 2010 if a band member of Kahnawa:ke marries someone who is non-Indigenous, they face eviction. The motivation behind this policy is to ensure that the Mohawk bloodline does not die out and it also prevents the non-Indigenous from taking advantage of tax exemptions afforded to those of Indigenous heritage. This summer, this issue gained public notice in the news, coinciding with the filming of this current season. Members of the community are understandably divided on this issue, since as we all know, sometimes you cannot help who you fall in love with, as is/has been the case with our fab four.

With all of that in mind, we begin this week with Watio (Jimmy Blais) and  Bailey (Jenny Pudavick) clashing heads once again. Both of them are feeling pressured to be people that they aren’t. Compromises seem to require  more and more work for these two.  Bailey did manage to snag a good Mohawk man but, she is still second guessing herself. Is she compromising a happy future, just to ensure she marries Mohawk?

The Marry Out Get Out policy also overshadows the scenes featuring Caitlin (Heather White) and Leon (Dwain Murphy). Team Cailon go shopping for an engagement gift for Bailey and Watio, but conversation quickly revisits the argument Caitlin had last week with her father (Lawrence Bayne). She explains the pressures she is facing culturally and socially because they are a mixed-race couple. Leon completely gets it and we can cue the adorable #Cailon moments again. Seriously, who finds a guy as amazing as Leon?

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Heather White and Dwain Murphy run lines in prep for their next scene
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Caitlin (Heather) and Leon (Dwain) purchase an engagement gift for Bailey and Watio

The heartbreak this policy causes is showcased with Anna’s (Maika Harper) scenes. She attends the eviction protest in support of those in favour of the Marry Out Get Out contingent. (Did everyone catch that the protest was at co-creator/co-director Tracey Deer’s “house”?). But her heart is clearly not in it. Her own parents faced this same dilemma which has led to Anna not fully fitting in in Kahnawa:ke.

Now we know Mohawk Girls can’t be entirely serious when we have the physical comic talents of Brittany LeBorgne playing Zoe.  Tonight, Zoe has clearly fallen off her sex addiction wagon. The threat of losing the thrill that dom Henry (Marc Trottier) provides proves too much to bear. Zoe scrambles for forgiveness but now she is more tightly bound—heh get it? bound—to Henry. Anyway, Henry issues his order and despite its interference with her campaigning,  Zoe follows through. LOL Brittany hun! That is a big standing “O” for the bar scene with Ohserase (Shawn Youngchief). You two went for it and delivered!

Finally, all of our ladies show up at the engagement party and life  for Caitlin gets even more complicated. Butterhead (Meegwun Fairbrother) turns up his interest a notch, and even steals a kiss from unsuspecting Caitlin. Talk about confusing! And we get a great scene with Sose (Glenn Gould); I wish we had more Sose this season! He is one of my fave characters! He lets Anna know how disappointed he is in her and she leaves in tears. Is this finally the sense that Anna needs?

OK everyone, we only have two episodes left! What do you think is in store for us? Are Bailey and Watio actually going to get married? Will Zoe get elected chief? And what the heck is Caitlin going to do about Butterhead and Leon? Let me know in the comments below!

Mohawk Girls can be seen Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. ET on APTN. If you happen to miss the episode you can catch up here.

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Mohawk Girls decide–Hit it or Quit it.

This episode of Mohawk Girls dabbled with several stereotypes and prejudices. Sexism, racism, homophobia: they were all jammed in.

Caitlin (Heather White) faced down the community’s prejudices about black men. Anna (Maika Harper) comes to the defense  of Elijah (Gregory Odjig) when he faced hurtful homophobic jokes. Bailey (Jenny Pudavick) was uncomfortable with Watio’s (Jimmy Blais) demands that she not have any new “guy friends.” And Zoe (Brittany LeBorgne) was the victim of prejudices too, since her fair features make her look too white to be a representative for Mohawks. In some way all of our fab four mixed it up, faced down social oppression and began to recognize who they are and what they really stand for. Or, to make a long story short, we had lots of character growth happening in 22 minutes of Mohawk Girl fun!

We began with Zoe, who was scheduled to debate against town favourite Tommy “Shitzu” Horn (Jay Montour). After following Henry’s (Mark Trottier) suggestions regarding her couture, or rather her lack of unmentionables, she found that extra bit of confidence that her naughty little secret always gives her. She did well in the debate until Shitzu called her out for not looking Mohawk enough and her confidence shattered. To try and compensate, Zoe dyed her hair. Poor Zoe, she is still trying to satisfy everyone, and now it seems she is guilty of Caitlin’s sins simply by association. On the bright side, instead of turning to her sexual addictions, Zoe—at long long last—began to let Ohserase (Shawn Youngchief) in. Folks, we now have team Zoeserase!

Meanwhile, Bailey officially moved in with Watio. Personalities began to clash early, but Watio a.k.a. “Mr. Pretzel” once again deferred to Bailey and unpacking gave way to wedding preparations. Learning that Bailey and James (Jeffery Wetsch) have evolved from the teacher/student relationship into a “friends” relationship, it is really no surprise these two butt heads. Watio stood his ground. Bailey turned to Caitlin and Anna for advice and this time they were in agreement with Watio: “No new guy friends! It leads to emotional infidelity.” Bailey arranged to meet James to let him know they cannot continue to pursue this friendship. Their meeting did not turn out the way she anticipated, but did it turn out the way she secretly hopes?

Now that Kanawa:ke knows the truth about Caitlin’s new man, she steeled herself for the anticipated backlash from the community. Mean girl Vicky (Rachelle White Wind) and Iostha (Allison Pratt) have both decided Caitlin can no longer be their hairdresser since her hands have touched “black c–k.” Caitlin’s father (Lawrence Bayne) was furious with Caitlin for “polluting the bloodline” and declared their “people will die off and it will be all her fault” for dating a black man. Caitlin stood her ground and defended this healthy relationship to everyone. And on the balance of things, Team Cailon are definitely looking very comfortable in their togetherness—*cue the fart*. But I sense trouble on the horizon. Butterhead (Meegwun Fairbrother) came to Caitlin, announcing he would take her back.

That left us with Anna, who once again turned to her new confidant Butterhead for dating advice … but that advice proved less than stellar. And are we really surprised? This time, Anna has been compromising her own values just to fit in. Thinking that Midas (Tanner Novlan) will secure her a place in Kanawa:ke, Zoe and Bailey set her straight. Looks like Midas needs to look elsewhere to turn his blue coconuts back into gold.

Score: Cailon👍    Zoserase👍    Watio a weak👍   and Anna👌

What do you think is next for our ladies? Is Butterhead going to continue pursuing Caitlin? Has Zoe finally gotten over her addictions? What is next for Bailey and James or Watio? And REALLY Anna? Stop hanging out with Butterhead already. He just spells trouble! Let me know in the comments below!

Mohawk Girls airs Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. ET on APTN.

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Mohawk Girls: Slaying their dragons … er … bears!

Well, look at our Mohawk Girls go! If you recall, last week Bailey (Jenny Pudavick) was turned down for an internship at a travel zine. It also looked like Team Cailon (Heather White and Dwain Murphy)  might be over. Zoe (Brittany LeBorgne) was determined to conquer her sexual addictions and Anna (Maika Harper) was on a quest to find a replacement for Thunder.  All four had their challenges set before them and it seemed this week they were out to slay their bears.

Episode 4 featured lots of girlfriend time. Rarely do we see all four ladies gathered together in more than one scene per episode. And what do women talk about when they all get together? Yep, you know it! The men, or in Anna’s case a lack thereof, in her life. She has yet to find a replacement for Thunder (Kyle Nobess). After Anna’s hot mess performance, Bailey, Caitlin and Zoe all dished out dating advice. One thing is for certain: “Fauxhawk” is determined she’ll never again be called “Hatgirl.” Her contestant this week came in the guise of Midas (Tanner Novlan), the latest unattached potential sperm donor who is free of any baby mama baggage. Her evening was cut short with the appearance of none other than Thunder, but in his official capacity as an officer of the law arrived to break up the party.

During their “Wedding Boot Camp” session, the girls rehashed Bailey’s career dilemma. Their discussions revolved around the merits of learning to speak French a.k.a. “the language of the oppressors.” But it is decided: Bailey is determined to learn French. She dove in and James (Jeffrey Wetsch) offered to give Bailey some private tutelage following  the weekly art lessons. I sense some complications on Bailey’s horizon!

Caitlin has begun her personal hairdressing business, but the joy is lost since she believes Leon is out of her life. She is convinced he is too good for her anyway. Zoe drags her out to the bar for a super fun time and who should appear with flowers in hand? Luscious Leon! And, as I suspected, Butterhead (Meegwun Fairbrother) is NOT impressed he has been replaced. Fists flew in a very nicely filmed action scene and Leon was the victor. But this very public declaration meant Caitlin’s dirty little secret was out. You can be sure ALL of Kahnawa:ke knows now!

And, finally, Zoe. Alas, it seems only three of our four ladies are making some sort of headway in their lives whilst Zoe has slipped back into her old habits. She showed up at her appointed time for a session with new cutie-pie and dom Henry (Mark Trottier). Huh, who knew washing dishes could be so uh … stimulating?

We have reached the halfway mark of Mohawk Girls‘ season! What do you think is going to happen in the second half? Is Anna going to get past this hot mess stage of hers and find her new Thunder? What are your thoughts of the budding Caitlin/Leon/Butterhead triangle? Who do you think is worthy of Caitlin’s heart? Is Zoe going to win her election, or will her dependence on the sexual thrill be her downfall? And what about Bailey? Will Watio (Jimmy Blais) really be supportive with her learning French, especially when he finds out James is helping his fiancée? Let me know in the comments below!

Mohawk Girls can be seen Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. ET on APTN.

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Link: Mohawk Girls’ Brittany LeBorgne on Zoe’s run at Chief

From Bridget Liszewski of The TV Junkies:

Link: Mohawk Girls’ Brittany LeBorgne on Zoe’s run at Chief
“I think it’s amazing and women often don’t get enough opportunity or the chances to do this, especially in this line of work. It is a show about women, yes we do have a lot of male fans, but it is a show about women. If you didn’t have women at the helm I don’t know how authentic it would be. Sometimes I’ll read a script or a description of a female character for an audition and before even looking you’re like ‘oh man, a man wrote this.’ I think there’s something to be said about women writing for women. It’s so nice when we get scripts or hear about storylines we’re like ‘oh my I went through something like that!’ Having women creating for women makes it so much more special, authentic and relatable.” Continue reading. 

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Mohawk Girls: Defending my turf!

Insecurities are abundant in Episode 3 of Mohawk Girls and, as a result, some very clear boundary lines are drawn: S/He is MINE is the theme, but we also see some cultural lines peppered throughout.

Bailey (Jenny Pudavick), Caitlin ( Heather White) and Luscious Leon (Dwain Murphy) all head to the city to attend James’ (Jeffrey Wetsch) art show. However, Watio (Jimmy Blais) also decides to turn up. His discomfort is palpable in the world of wine and canapes but he shadows Bailey, making it clear she is with him. Unfortunately, Watio’s presence makes a nervous Caitlin even more so; she is not ready for Kahnawa:ke to discover she is dating  Leon. Once the coast is clear—i.e. Watio and Bailey leave—a hyper-aware Caitlin defends her turf with typical Caitlin verve. There are some really fabulous Caitlin gems in this week’s episode. It is a good thing Leon is so understanding—does everyone agree we all need our own personal Leon in our lives? Caitlin is completely not herself and these two worlds keep colliding in and out of the bedroom.

Anna (Maika Harper) is torn between two Annas. The old Anna is trying to sort through her feelings for Thunder (Kyle Nobess) while the new Anna is out to take her newfound acceptance for a test drive. She attempts the latter. Her new BFF Butterhead (Meegwun Fairbrother) gives her a pep talk and sends her off again into the wilds of Mohawk dating. She tries once more, this time with Lyle (Kristopher Bowman) but after just one batch of macaroons, that too falls flat.

Zoe (Brittany LeBorgne) made it to the pink cloud. Despite feeling she has made a breakthrough with her sex addiction, her therapist points out Zoe is simply not ready for any entanglements. Undaunted, she revises her campaign platform and presents it to a captive audience at the local diner. Even the presence of her formidable mother and Chief (Tantoo Cardinal) during her impromptu presentation does not throw Zoe off her game. Impressed with her daughter’s political savvy, the Chief has encouraging words! Could Zoe really be gaining some control in her life?

Getting back to Bailey and Watio; while at the art show, Bailey felt attacked for her work at the tobacco factory. Watio comes to her defence—cue the awwwwww—but still that attack planted a seed. Now I think Bailey, in some part of her, whether she is ready to admit it or not, has realized she is “settling” with Watio. In order to  satisfy her need for adventure, she tries to find an avenue to pursue it professionally. Bailey applies for an unpaid intern position at a travel magazine, but this proves fruitless. She recognizes that, in order to compete for a job in Montreal, she needs to learn French, much to everyone’s dismay.

Now this is where we get to our mini cultural lesson—it remains a political statement by many Mohawks who reside in Quebec to deliberately speak English rather than French. Historically, the Mohawks sided with the British in colonial times, but of late this political rift stems from ongoing tensions as the Parti Québécois continues the fight for recognition of its sovereignty within Canada. This is a battle Mohawks have been fighting for more than a century: recognition of their sovereignty within Quebec and Canada. In fact, the school actress Heather White (our Caitlin) teaches at—Kahnawa:ke Survivial School—was built in 1976 in direct response to language Bill 101. For those of you old enough to remember, this was the time when French became the capital “D” dominant language in Quebec and those who spoke English found themselves at odds in their own province.

So what does everyone think? Will Team #Cailon reconcile? How is Watio going to react to Bailey taking French lessons? What the HELL is up with Anna and Butterhead? And is Zoe finally getting her head on straight? Let me know in the comments below.

Mohawk Girls can be seen Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. ET on APTN.

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