The explosive season 2 finale of Brooklyn’s most notorious original web series Money and Violence had viewers on edge from start to finish. We recently caught up with Money and Violence creator Moe, who also plays Rafe on the show, to get the inside scoop on everything that went down in season 2, what’s ahead for season 3 and more.
Check out our interview below.
What made you decide to show a darker side of Rafe in the season 2 finale?
I think throughout the second season, the audience really forgot how cold Rafe can be. That’s really kind of missing from the story and the thing is, nobody really knows Rafe’s past. What people don’t quite understand yet is that the three characters Rafe, Shane and Miz are basically the same person at three different stages in their lives. So, like, the mindset of Miz, Rafe has been there before. Now, he’s basically just about survival and he’s calmed down a lot.
Yeah, I think a lot of viewers were pretty shocked to see that side of him in the scene with Jessica.
What happened with him and Jessica, I put that scene in there just as a reminder to the audience that Rafe is very cold and very calculated. He’s very emotionally detached. You know, he’s good to those that are good to him. His relationship works with Miz because of the loyalty that they share for each other but, Rafe kind of teeters on this borderline. Like, if Miz was to ever do him wrong….he can’t deal with pain. So he would go off the deep end. So, even in the situation with Jessica, he lives by this code. That code is good and bad because it allows him to be so principal-based and allows him to keep those morals, but at the same time, it’s like he extends people this respect. So if you ever disrespect him, he can go totally off the deep end and feel absolutely no way about it because he gave them no reason to cross him.
Speaking on Miz and Rafe’s relationship, will there ever come a time when we’ll see them at odds or against each other?
No, I don’t think so. The only reason being, this show is more than entertainment for me. It’s sort of like a teaching tool for younger generations and we’ve kind of lost that concept of loyalty. It almost doesn’t exist anymore and I want this relationship to kind of serve as a blueprint to show that two alpha males can co-exist without having beef. Rafe can respect Miz for who he is and vice versa without either person feeling threatened by another strong person’s presence. Don’t get me wrong, they butt heads all the time, but I really want to show that they can do that and still agree to disagree. With a lot of these young guys today, it’s a constant competition to see who’s more alpha and it shouldn’t be like that.
As the show’s creator, did you ever consider having Jessica, Rafe and Choppa in one scene together to hash everything out?
At one point in time, I did consider it. That whole situation is very complicated because Jessica really had no involvement in what was going on, but she still thought Rafe got shot because of her. With Rafe, although he knew, he wanted to basically give Jessica the opportunity to expose herself whether she was gonna be truthful to him or whether she was gonna lie. By her lying, she chose a side. As far as Choppa, with what occurred in season 1 with Rafe getting shot [by Choppa], I couldn’t find any possible scenario that would have them in the same room and still be able to have a dialogue without it ending in bloodshed. That just wouldn’t happen realistically.
What do you most want viewers, and especially young African-American viewers in similar situations, to take away about co-parenting from the dynamic between Kane and Cindy?
I think an elephant in the room that a lot of people do not address with regard to the situation is this: Yes, it’s true that a lot of our homes are fatherless. But, just as many fathers as there are out there who don’t take care of their children, there are a lot of mothers who keep fathers that do want to be there away. So, with the whole thing with Kane and Cindy, I wanted to show people exactly what not co-parenting and not co-existing and not communicating really does from the inside looking out. A lot of people in those situations get caught up in whatever happened in the relationship and what they don’t understand is that the only person who really get hurt is the child. So, I wanted to really put that out there. Especially at the end when Kane tells Cindy that he’s not even upset with her boyfriend because her boyfriend feels the way that he feels about Kane because of things she told him. So you know, he tells her, if a grown adult feels like your boyfriend feels based on the things he’s heard you say about me, just imagine how my daughter feels about me having heard you say similar things. So, yeah, that dynamic you see between Kane and Cindy on the show is definitely something that’s very dear to my heart and something that needed to be addressed because it’s something that goes on a lot in our community.
Talk a little about the police brutality scene from this season and how that played out.
Well, when I cast the character, I told him, ‘you’re gonna be shot and killed by the police.’ I really really wanted to give the audience a character that they could fall in love with as the season progressed and to see this guy going on the right path and trying his best to do right only for his life to be cut short. Equally as important as the shooting was the newscast the day after that painted this picture of him as an ex-con who just came home 6 months ago after serving time for a murder conviction. In reality, as we find out shortly after, he didn’t even have anything to do with the murder that he got sent to prison for. He just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. You know, it’s just something that goes on all the time. When we’re done wrong, what they do is they discredit us to make it seem like we’re worthless and that’s definitely something that I wanted to shed a light on.
T.I. and Maino both appeared in the season 2 finale episode and there were a few other celebrity cameos this season. How was it working with them as actors?
With the Maino situation, you know, he’s an artist from Brooklyn and at the end of the day, I’m really trying to bring this whole New York unity thing together. My motto is, ‘the stage is big enough for all of us.’ I had a couple of different celebrities who actually wanted to be on the show but, I couldn’t find a way to make it feel authentic and feel natural. Like, with Uncle Murda. It’s funny because, I’ve had the Bars character in mind for a while. I had three people read for that character but they just could not pull it off. At the end of the second season, I told my manager, ‘I have this character and I think Murda can pull it off.’ As you see in the season, he did amazing. He really became the character. When I watch the scenes, I don’t see Uncle Murda, I see Bars the character. Even with T.I., it was a pleasure working with him. There was no ego or nothing like that and he took direction and he even added to his scenes. Like at the end of the last finale scene he’s in when he’s walking out the door, all of that was ad-libbed.
What can you tell us about season 3 and about the future of Money and Violence in general?
At this point, where season 3 would go, I honestly have no idea [laughs]. But you can definitely expect the same socially conscious and authentic content. No matter what or no matter who we end up working with, we’re always gonna make sure that the show doesn’t lose its’ essence because that’s such a huge part of what makes it special.
You can catch up on Seasons 1 and 2 of Money and Violence on Tidal.