It’s the second season of Reservation Dogs, the critically lauded series by Sterlin Harjo that shows it’s truly a good day to be Indigenous!
Like last year, I will recap the show for those who watch and those who don't, giving the basics and not spoiling anything too much for anyone until they hit DVD, or you bum a friend’s password.
Episode 7: “Stay Gold Cheesy Boy”
The Plot: As Cheese (Lane Factor) and uncle Charley (Nathan Apodaca) quietly enjoy a snack, law enforcement comes to arrest Charley, leaving Cheese stuck alone in a halfway house. He is introduced to the coordinator Gene (guest-starring Marc Maron), and other residents, especially Tino (played by Navajo rapper Travis Thompson) and Julio (played by playwright Reynaldo Piniella).
As Cheese navigates the choppy waters, his friends try to bail him out. He says no, telling his friends he will do his (supposed) time.
The Review: In this episode, and the show in general, Cheese is the character to root for.
He is a naive innocent that, as this episode details, has a deeper intelligence at play, always being calm and patient, even if it doesn’t pay off for him. His only infraction at the halfway house is borrowing a phone to make sure his “grandmother” is okay. Sure, tougher characters exist, but few go deep like Cheese does.
Cheese’s reunion is ultimately rewarding, giving all of us a happy ending, at least for this episode.
Also, it was great to see Marc Maron as Gene. I saw him do a set at a NYC club a few months after 9/11. He was funny enough, but the passing years—over two decades now—have made him a force to be reckoned with in the stand-up, podcast, and streaming realms. With sarcastic asides and fatigued truth-telling, he is a great guest star and a great actor in general.