Michael Rainey Jr. Reflects On ‘Power Book II: Ghost’ Ending: “Tariq Didn’t Get A Chance To Be Human”

The spin-off from the series that has dominated the Starz network since 2014 is sadly coming to an end after its upcoming fourth season.

Power Book II: Ghost, created by Courtney Kemp and Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson, birthed a slew of new characters including Monet Tejada (Mary J. Blige) and Davis MacLean (Method Man), who played pivotal roles in Tariq St. Patrick’s life. Tariq, played by Michael Rainey Jr., is the son of James and Tasha St. Patrick (Omari Hardwick and Naturi Naughton), who grew to become a kingpin right before our eyes.

The crime-drama show picked up from its predecessor, Power, as Tariq grappled with killing his father and keeping his mother away from jail and out of harms way. Book II saw the young hustler not only enroll in college but also drug deal his way through to afford MacLean, who got him out of many jams. In the midst, Tariq also began working with Monet Tejada, all while trying to become his own man — someone not like his father.

Power Book II: Ghost Season 3.


The third season left fans wondering what would happen to Tariq, as its last episode ended with all of his allies turning against him. The final season sees Tariq try and “reconcile with his past to rise to the top of the food chain and become who he needs to be to protect those he loves most.”

The franchise announced that the fourth season would be its last in March, as a fourth Power spinoff is currently in development. “While this marks the conclusion of one chapter, our commitment to the Power universe endures with more compelling storytelling on the horizon,” stated Kathryn Busby, President of Programming for STARZ.

Power‘s legacy was continued by Book II: Ghost, Book III: Raising Kanan and Book IV: Force. Speaking to his chapter’s conclusion, Rainey Jr. reflected on his time with the series, claiming that it taught him a lot about “loyalty, principles and respect.” He also shared that having his own spin-off proved to himself that he “was ready.”

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In an interview with VIBE, the 23-year-old spoke on dominating his role on Power and Book II: Ghost and gave insight into what he would have liked to see his character become.

VIBE: Do you think that there’s any other show that can top what you all did at Power and Power Book II: Ghost?

Michael Rainey Jr: I’m not going to sit here all humble; there’s not going to be another show that’s going to replicate what the Power universe did, and that’s just the facts. It’s going to be great shows out there. There’s going to be historic and legendary shows, but what Power did, I don’t think another show could replicate that.

Thinking back to when you first started until now, what have you learned about your own work ethic and capabilities?

I learned a lot. Being around these great people every day, these great minds and even the scripts — the situations that characters go through with each other — it taught me a lot about loyalty, principles and respect. When they told me I was going to have my own spin-off, I was like, ‘Hell, no. Y’all bugging. That’s not going to happen. Nobody likes Tariq. It’s over with. That’s not going to happen.’ 50 [Cent] told me, ‘Yo, they don’t think that you ready.’ Then I was like ‘Oh no, they bugging.’

I had to get into a mode of not even trying to prove them wrong, but just proving me and 50 Cent right, because 50 knew I was ready. I’m like, ‘You know what? I got no choice but to be ready.’ I just took everything that was coming and I was just like, ‘Whatever happens, happens. We going to work, though.’

Power Book II: Ghost Season 1.


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Would you say you ultimately said yes to the spin-off because you had something to prove?

No. I said yes because I had no choice. They’re like, ‘Yo, we writing a TV show about you.’ I’m not goin to say ‘no.’ I was ready to quarterback the whole thing. At first, I was like, ‘Nobody likes Tariq, so I don’t know if I’m ready. I don’t think that anybody’s even going to watch it.’ Courtney [Kemp] actually came to me second, because 50 told me first and I thought he was joking. Once Courtney told me that, I was like, ‘All right, man, let me get ready. Let me get ready.’

It’s the last season, it’s bittersweet. When you found out, where were you and how did you take it?

I don’t even know. I was probably in the crib playing a game or something. It wasn’t on set though. We finished filming before we knew it was going to be the last season. I don’t even know where I was. They told me and I was like, “Why?”

If this weren’t the final season, where would you like to see Tariq’s character go or become?

I would’ve wanted to see him get up out the state or something. Go out the country for a little bit. Go enjoy the fruits of your labor. You over here, damn near dying almost every day and you can’t even enjoy whatever you’re working for. Tariq needed a little three-day trip to Miami. I wanted to see Tariq actually get a chance to not even be just a kid, but be a human. He always had something going on.

Do you think he would’ve became exactly like his father, or maybe taken the good guy path?

I don’t think there was no good guy path for Tariq. It was there for him his whole life, and I just feel like he just went the route that was really meant for him. It’s like, how could he really become anything else? He didn’t have nothing else to look up to. He didn’t have nobody that was a college graduate that got their degree to look up to. His mentor was Kanan and running around with him from the whole third season. It’s like all of that stuff he learned from Kanan, what could he possibly apply that to, other than the streets?

Power Book II: Ghost Season 3.


That makes sense.

He’s just in the streets, and he’s just a product of his environment, product of his family.

Of the entire Power universe, who would you say was the number one villain and hero?

Dre is definitely the number one villain. That dude was alive for so long. He was raising hell forever. If you’re going to say ‘hero,’ there’s a few people you could really consider for certain reasons. I would consider Tariq a hero because he didn’t let Ghost send his mom to jail. Even though she ended up in jail anyway, it wasn’t for what she would’ve ended up in jail for. I would say Tasha’s also a hero, too, because she kind of saved Tariq.

Would you be a part of another 50 Cent production?

Oh yeah, 100%. Anything 50 doing and he call me for it, count me in. Anytime. That’s my idol. I’ll never pass up an opportunity to work with 50 Cent ever in my life, ever.

What’s next for you?

A lot is next for Michael. Right now, I have a small writers team and we got two scripts right now that we’re writing, obviously auditioning — I’m going to be filming something very soon, can’t speak on that, but looking forward to it — and my music stuff I’ve been producing.

Power Book II: Ghost Season 3.


Season four of the hit drama series will be split into two parts, with the first premiering on Friday (June 7) and the second on Sept. 6.

See the trailer above.