‘SWV Reunited’ Season 1, Episode 1 Recap: Coko Might Have Breast Cancer
After a 15-year hiatus, SWV is back with energy, spirit and a headlining tour. But with so many years of growing up and being apart, there are still some old wounds that haven’t healed as well as secrets that aren’t shared in the season premiere of ‘SWV Reunited.’
Cheryl “Coko” Clemons proves this when she does her best to hide news about a lump doctors found in her breast from Tamara “Taj” Johnson-George and Leanne “Lelee” Lyons.
But before we get to that drama, the show kicks off with each of the ladies spending some time at home before they head to London to play Wembley Arena. Taj, who lives in Nashville, and Lelee, who’s in Atlanta, both have family time and shares her nervousness regarding the show. “It’s been so long since we’ve performed in front of so many people,” Lelee tells her kids. “So I’m just scared.”
While Coko, who resides in Virginia Beach, Va., is just as excited, we finally see her reveal that she may have breast cancer, but she won’t be able to get a biopsy to find out if she has cancer till after their show in London. While that’s scary enough, Coko surprises her husband, and sometimes SWV drummer, Mike Clemmons, and tells him that she doesn’t plan to share the bad news with Taj and Lelee.
“I don’t feel like they’re my sisters,” she says. “We haven’t been tight in many, many years, and this is my personal business. And I wanna keep it to myself.”
But she does reassure Mike that she would say something if the lump is malignant because that would essentially stop the SWV comeback.
We then see the ladies back in Nashville to rehearse ‘I’m So Into You,’ but Coco explains that she’s not big on rehearsing. “Coko doesn’t like leaving her house,” she says. “I’d rather rehearse over the phone.”
Even though that seems like a problem, the biggest issue is really Cory, SWV’s manager and Coko’s old friend. It’s clear that Taj isn’t a big Cory fan and the two get into a spat during rehearsal about not having any information about their upcoming press in the U.K. Since Cory as manager doesn’t seem to be working, they consider talking to Jeff Robinson to possibly manage them. Meanwhile, Coko tells Cory about her health problem.
Perhaps what many fans don’t realize or remember is that SWV broke up not because they weren’t doing well on the charts, but because they were not getting along. And when they get to the U.K, their first interviewer quickly asks them about what really happened to the “demise of SWV.”
Each of the girls have their own views on the story. While Coko tried to go for a solo career that never rose to the great heights of her former girl group, Taj sold her house to survive and Lelee just could not cope. “It got to the point where I was gonna end my life,” she explains.
Although they seem to get through the radio interview, they were a wreck during their a cappella rendition of ‘Weak’ as Taj just kept laughing and coughing at each attempt to sing.
They brush it off and head to Wembley, where they once performed back in the ’90s with Case, Snoop Dogg and Blackstreet, and reveal how nervous they are to play such a big show.
As they try to keep their cool and finally get onstage, Tyson Beckford (or rather his hotness) gives them all butterflies during their performance of ‘Anything,’ of which he made his music video debut. The show goes off without a hitch, and you’ll instantly feel the nostalgia when you see Charisse Rose and Cassandra Lucas of Changing Faces and Tyson show up to greet the ladies in the green room.
While SWV are all smiles, here comes Cory who provides “constructive criticis”‘ and spills the beans on Coko’s cancer worries. And Lelee and Taj immediately break down in tears and confront Coko. “You have to stop keeping secrets like that from us,” Taj says. “It is not fair.”
Back in Virginia Beach, Coko takes us into the examination room for her biopsy. Two days later, they are back in rehearsals, and Taj brings up the meeting with Jeff in New York City to sign him on as their manager. They decide to take the meeting, but then Coko gets the call from her doctor.
Does she have cancer? Is this the end of SWV? Find out next week.