After a year-long hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our favorite ratchet crew of “tattoo artists” and people, we are still trying to figure out what the hell they do exactly is back for Black Ink Crew: New York’s 9th season.
We are Black in business.
The ninth season of VH1’s hit reality show, not called Love & Hip Hop, kicks off with the tattoo shop mogul breaking down his COVID year. In the opening montage, Ceaser reflects on his flagship shop on 113th being shuttered because he didn’t handle business properly, but he did make his Brooklyn shop which he declares “Black excellence,” the new flagship shop.
He also revealed that, like millions of other people worldwide, he caught the highly contagious virus, which was a reality check for him because he was out here traveling and partying like nothing was going on. With that being said, Ceaser heads back to New York to rally the troops becuase it’s time to get back to “work.”
Once he touches down in the Big Apple, Ceaser sends out the Black Ink bat signal in the form of a mass text telling his crew it’s time to assemble. From there, we learn what the crew has been up to during the pandemic.
Our favorite couch sitter and “manager,” Ted is now a “music producer,” Tatti is homeowner, hairstylist, plus “personal trainer,” Walt is still doing comedy but struggled (we are going to touch on that). Donna plus Alex have been traveling across the country despite being advised not to per CDC guidelines. The struggle tattoo artist has also shifted her attention into the CBD business and sells juices infused with cannabidiol. This is on top of her selling feet photos and videos on OnlyFans she admitted during Black Ink Crew: Confessions special.
Puma and his lovely wife are dealing with the stress that is homeschooling.
Anyway, Ceaser has a new sense of motivation. Currently on a high becuase of his quarantine “glow up” that has also led to him finding “love” unfortunately, he expects his crew to be in the same boat and should be happy to come back to the shop and get back to work. That is not the case, and for that to happen, they feel some demands need to be met.
Ted, of course, just wants the same lazy energy from 113th to be kept and feels that will be the case, so he’s down to come back. Tatti feels she is very underappreciated at Black Ink and is tired of being a “glorified receptionist” and wants more from Ceaser, but she reluctantly is onboard. Walt says whatever, becuase he ain’t got a choice. Donna wants to be down but doesn’t want to do tattoos anymore (a relief if you ask us) and wants to sell her CBD juices in the shop. Ceaser is quite confused, but honestly, he should be quite happy that Donna wants to put down the tattoo gun.
Well, anyway, Ceaser announces to get back in the Black Ink spirit, the shop will be providing free tattoos to frontline workers who held it down during the pandemic. A very dope gesture that the entire crew can get behind.
Noticeably absent was Puma, who smartly opted not to be at the meeting becuase he didn’t feel safe around his cast members becuase they were living life as normal during the pandemic. We feel him on that. Teddy and Ceaser did convince their bro to come out of the house for a meeting of the minds and shine a light on what looks to be the drama at the center of this season.
Ceaser reveals that the shop on 125th was broken into, and somebody lifted $ 2,000 worth of body jewelry, $5,000 from the shop’s register, and merchandise. Ted and Ceaser both believe it was an inside job, while Puma is absolutely stunned at the revelations.
The only person who could have been responsible from a logical standpoint is Walter. Puma is absolutely stunned that it could be one of the people who have been down with the crew since the beginning.
Meanwhile, at another location, Walt and Donna meet up to have a conversation. She presses her friend because he didn’t show up to her birthday dinner during the pandemic. Donna believes that Walt is ducking her because he owes her money. Apparently, Walt struggled during the pandemic and needed some financial help, and Donna came through for him. Donna isn’t BIG MAD and tells him he can make up for it by helping her with the CBD juice business, and Walt says he is down.
It’s time for the free tattoo event, and it goes smoothly. In a touching scene, frontline workers share their experiences during the pandemic reflecting on the losses they endured while everything was going down.
To keep in compliance with safety regulations, the crew worked stacked hours. Some artists worked the day shift and while others worked the night shift. Tatti, who oversaw the event during the day, was supposed to be relieved by Walt, but he hasn’t shown up yet. Ceaser finally arrives and is pleased to see everything is going well but is not too happy to see Donna set up a refrigerator in his shop to store and sell her CBD juices.
On top of that, Teddy has gotten his hands on surveillance of the footage from the night was the shop was broken into, and their worst fears were confirmed. It definitely looks like it was Walt based on his very distinguishable walk. When Walt finally arrives, Ted tells him to come to the back of the shop so they can have a conversation. At first, Walt is defensive and says that it is not him in the footage but does come clean about taking money out of the register and that he planned on putting it back.
There will definitely be more to this story. We are eager to see how this plays out. You can peep more reactions to the season 9 premiere in the gallery below.
Photo: Bernard Smalls / @PhotosByBeanz83
We’re so disappointed. Don’t be too proud to ask for help.
That’s an excellent question that also needs an answer.
These people are not smart at all.
Ceaser is a legend in his own mind.
Y’all are ruthless, lol.