Donald Glover’s project about a ‘Beyonce-like figure’ has been raising curiosity and rumours in Hollywood for at least two years. And while no one involved will say Knowles’ name – though Glover has called out the Beyhive and co-creator and showrunner Janine Nabers has spoken about “a certain pop star from Houston” – that series is finally here.
‘Swarm’ stars Dominique Fishback as Dre, an emotionally stunted superfan of a singer named Ni’Jah (Nirine S. Brown), who is a bit unhealthily obsessed with her own sister, Marissa (Chloe Bailey), reports Variety.
When a fight between the sisters separates them for a night, Dre goes out to celebrate Ni’Jah’s surprise album drop (clearly inspired by ‘Lemonade’, in which Beyonce sings about being cheated on) while Marissa discovers that she’s being cheated on by her boyfriend, Khalid (Damson Idris). Unable to reach Dre for support, she dies by suicide.
Showrunner Janine Nabers spoke to Variety, and said: “We knew that we wanted to start her off as a virgin. In a lot of horror stories, the protagonist, if she’s a female, is a virgin. So there’s a way of subverting that: ‘Oh, is this the story of a girl who loses her virginity and becomes awakened?’ We’re setting up this story of her sexuality, and when she loses her virginity, it’s fine. It is what it is. But the thing that actually sparks her sensuality, the thing that actually makes her come alive, is this violent act.”
Nabers further mentioned: “Because this is a limited series, we see Dre go through different iterations of her character. By the time we get to the finale, she is the most confident that she’s been. She’s grounded in her own skin. And that had a lot to do with her journey as a murderer and her relationship with social media. When you meet her in Episode 7, she’s not on her phone. She’s not focused on Ni’Jah. She feels like someone who’s in remission.”
“The fact that she is living very confidently as Tony – in a grounded, real way without any labels – is part of that. This relationship with Rashida is part of that. It’s about coming into your own sense of self. Tony is her at her truest, most humane, present, grounded form,” she concluded.