Patina Miller and MeKai Curtis breeding Kanan S2
Of all the exciting stories intertwined on Power Book III: Raising Kananthe relationship at its heart, between Raquel “Raq” Thomas (Patina Miller) and Kanan Stark (MeKai Curtis) takes fans on the most complicated personal journey.
Miller and Curtis spoke exclusively to ESSENCE ahead of the Season 2 premiere of the hit STARZ crime drama, and talked about creating a complicated yet authentic mother-son dynamic for their on-screen characters.
“You see these two people wanting to protect each other,” Miller said of Season 1. “But an action by Raquel…misaligned everything. So season two is about trying to hold on to power, but also trying to keep his son.
In season one, Raquel’s quest to maintain her position and keep an old secret buried deep led her to place her son Kanan in an unthinkable position. Not only is this a situation he probably wasn’t mentally prepared for, but it could cause irrevocable damage if he finds out the truth about the circumstances behind it.
“There’s this balance that happens on both sides,” Curtis said of the newly complicated relationship between the show’s mother and son duo. “For Kanan, he tries to stand up for who he is, or who he thought he was in the world, and also tries to balance who he is in his family life.” Kanan struggles to understand why his mother put him in a position to commit such a heinous act, while battling his internal demons associated with the decision he made.
“They’ve been a team from day one,” Curtis added. The rift between Raq and Kanan is new territory for each to navigate, and this season explores the complexities that develop for each as Kanan grows closer to manhood.
Miller’s portrayal of Raq has resonated with audiences since the show premiered in August 2021. However, Miller believes that even though she plays a ruthless kingpin with a drug empire to protect, her story rings true. for millions of women because of the universal experience she lives on screen: juggling work, family, her past, her present and trying to find love.
“Women do it every day. We’re handling these high-stakes jobs, we’re in these high-stakes situations, but we’re also trying to raise our kids and our nieces and nephews,” Miller said. “The queen of it all is one thing, but she’s a businesswoman at the end of the day. This is what makes it universal. You see this really strong woman, who also wants to be a good mom.
Season 2 of Power Book III: Raising Kanan premieres on STARZ on August 14.