Back in 2013, the British TV series, Top Boy came to a close. Most fans believed that it was the end of the show that featured the likes of Ashley Walters, Kano, Bashy and Scorcher as forefronters for the cast.
It’s 2017 and Drake posts a picture of Dushane (The character Ashley Walters play in Top Boy) via Instagram. It is clear that the Canadian rapper had been watching the series and speculated that he wanted to see more. Fast forward another couple of years and the speculation of Drake being involved in the revival of the series, became a reality. With the highly anticipated release of Season 3 coming later this week on Netflix, with a further 10 episodes. We decided to take a look back at the previous two seasons and remind ourselves as to what occurred on the Summerhouse Estate and what we may expect from the up and coming latest season…
Season 1 was a four part series that was released in 2011 that focuses on the dealings of Dushane (Ashley Walters) and Sully (Kano/Kano Robinson) who are the local drug dealing king-pins that run their crew from their Hackney estate, Summerhouse.
Episode 1 immediately introduces us to Ra’Nell (Michael Kamulete), who watches on from the flat that him and his Mother live in. We see a swift introduction into Dushane (Ashley Walters) and Sully’s (Kano/Kane Robinson) rivalry with Kamale (Tayo Jarrett/Scorcher) after two of the Summerhouse crew members are waiting by a car, Kamale and his crew pull up, stealing their drug supply by gun point. Dushane, Sully and Dris (Shone Romulus) arrive but it is too late, the stock is gone. This now means that Dushane and Sully are in debt with their boss, Bobby Raikes (Geoff Bell). Ra’Nell’s Mother, Lisa (Sharon Duncan-Brewster), is omitted to the Mental Health ward of a local Hospital as she is going through a breakdown. Ra’Nell holds down the fort whilst a friend of Ra’Nell’s Mother and Father, Leon (Nicholas Pinnock) comes round to watch over Ra’Nell. At the same time, we also meet another one of Lisa’s friends in Heather (Kierston Wareing) who is heavily pregnant and needing some extra cash to get by. Purchasing lights in a local DIY store, it turns out she is going ahead with a plan to grow her own weed stock, something that becomes a prominent point in the finale of the first season. Meanwhile, Dushane and Sully get the money back through a known associate who is willing to help them out with the debt. After paying off the debt, the crew “go country” to distribute their stock, with the help of new member and friend of Ra’Nell, Gem (Giacomo Mancini). The plan does not last long as Kamale somehow knows they are there and robs them again.
Ultimately, Bobby is pissed off that Dushane and Sully have managed to get robbed yet again. They ask Bobby for some extra time to get the stock back and also some fire power so they can make sure Kamale is not able to run up on them again without back up. Bobby ends up obliging to the request but Bobby’s right hand man Lee (Cyrus Desir) is not so happy. With the added fire power, Dushane and Sully start their plan to get their stock back from Kamale. Sully has his doubts about Gem and convinces himself that Gem is the reason that Kamale knows exactly where they are. Heather was having trouble with growing her own weed crop due to the pregnancy and calls on Ra’Nell to give her a hand whilst providing him with some money. Ra’Nell is happy to help her out, especially as he was not happy to follow in Gem’s footsteps and work with the Summerhouse crew. Lisa is on the mend and is getting closer to getting discharged from hospital. Leon is aware that Dushane and Sully are trying to recruit Ra’Nell and attempts to ask Dushane and Sully to leave him alone. The request is briefly listened to by Dushane but, ultimately, it is ignored. Initially, they decide that they are going to kidnap Kamale’s brother as means of ransom. This plan takes a horrid turn as instead of knocking him out as planned, Sully ends up killing him. The two end up burning the car which leaves them without a plan and unsure what to do so they decide to lay low from the attention.
A few days later, the Summerhouse crew are now on the look-out for Kamale with each member posted up in different places. One of the younger members of the crew, Michael (Xavian Russell) eventually spots Kamale making his way into a house. Dushane, Sully and Dris shortly arrive with them dragging Kamale out of the house and heading to a pre-dug up hole in the ground. After beating up Kamale and asking him on numerous occasions where their stock is, Kamale does not give any hint and remains silent. They decide to bury Kamale whilst still alive until he actually gives them the answers they need. After a little while, they dig him back up and Kamale is more than happy to cooperate and give them the answer. The trio hold no mercy though with Sully giving Dris a gun to finish off Kamale. Dushane and Sully head to the spot where the drugs are meant to be and are surprised to see that Lee was there. It is clear to them that Lee is the one that was working with Kamale so after some hesitation, Dushane firstly shoots him with Sully ending up shooting him as well.
The pair take the stock back too Bobby but he is confused as to the whole situation with Lee. Sales are deteriorating due to the high presence of Police following the recent incidents that have been caused by Sully and Dushane. This leaves both Dushane and Sully unsure as to how to handle the situation. Bobby calls Dushane for a meeting but states it must be without Sully. Bobby reiterates that the Police presence is affecting sales and the only way to stop this is to “feed the beast”. Essentially, Bobby is asking Dushane to give up Sully to the Police so business can continue as usual. Dushane immediately declines the idea or prospect of doing such a thing to his long time friend. Lisa has been out of hospital for a while now and is coping well but has her concerns about Ra’Nell and his whereabouts. The work he is doing for Heather is coming along nicely but the money she is offered for it is not enough for her to put a deposit down on her dream flat. Ra’Nell knows that Dushane may be interested in the product, particularly with the work slowing up on his end. Ra’Nell approaches Dushane and puts forward his offer and although the crew initially laugh it off, Dushane is somewhat interested. Sully on the other hand has other ideas to actually rob Ra’Nell for the drugs and get them for free. Ra’Nell and Dushane agree on a time and place to exchange the drugs and money but Sully asks Dris to keep an eye on Ra’Nell. Since his initial request for Dushane to leave Ra’Nell alone has been ignored, Leon asks again but Sully grows impatient and pulls a gun out on Leon. This is something that was witnessed by Ra’Nell and only grew tensions between Leon and Sully further. Heather gives birth to her child and during a visit from Ra’Nell, he lets her know that he has struck a deal with Dushane for the drugs and the money so she can get her flat. This sends Heather into a panic but Ra’Nell lets her know he will get it sorted. During a visit from Lisa, Heather explains the current situation to her but this, obviously, sends Lisa into a rage. She calls on Leon to help Ra’Nell and make sure he is okay. As Ra’Nell is making his way down the block with the drugs, Sully and Dris are waiting for him at the bottom of the lifts and stairs. A tussle ensues with Sully taking the drugs from Ra’Nell but Leon gets involved which results in Leon getting fatally shot. This is another incident that creates huge tension and puts all eyes on Summerhouse, in particular Sully and Dushane. After laying low for a period of time, Dushane visits Sully and asks him for the gun that he has been using. Sully who is unsure of what to do but gives the gun to Dushane. Dushane makes a call too Billy, with viewers thinking that he is going to give up Sully. In an unexpected turn of events, Dushane kills Billy and disposes of the weapon with Dushane also giving himself an automatic promotion. Ra’Nell, understandably upset by the days events, takes a knife from the kitchen and approaches Dushane but Lisa arrives to stop anything more violence occurring and anyone getting hurt. Lisa tells Dushane to stay away from Ra’Nell from now on. The season ends up Dushane speaking to the boss of Billy, Joe (David Hayman) who calls the shots, about working with him so Dushane is able to now operate Summerhouse Estate how he wants too.
Season 2 arrived in 2013 with a further four episodes. With Kamale, Bobby and Lee out of the picture, Dushane has taken control of the Summerhouse Estate drug running. This has not meant that the authorities and others are still out there trying to take him down.
A year on from Season 1, both Dushane and Sully have parted ways with Dris now taking Sully’s position as Dushane’s right hand man. Dushane is now working under Joe with Sully now working alongside unfamiliar face, Mike (Paul Anderson). The supply of drugs is running dry on Sully’s end but things are just getting started on Dushane’s side with a large influx of drugs about to enter his operations. Whilst taking his daughter to school, Dris is arrested for his connection in the murder of Kamale. Both Dushane and Sully are also arrested but due to making no comment and Dushane’s stern and straightforward solicitor, they are able to get released. Dushane clearly has an eye for his solicitor Rihanna (Lorraine Burroughs). During all of this, the rest of the Summerhouse crew are still going about their business but a new character, Jason (Ricky Smarts), is spying on them. Jason also bumps into Sully and Mike and after tricking them into lending him a pound, Jason steals Sully’s phone. Jason’s arrival eventually strikes up an unlikely friendship between himself and Sully. Ra’Nell and Gem are still friends but their friendship has somewhat parted with Ra’Nell focusing on his football whereas Gem is still stuck on the sidelines of crime. At the end of Season 1, Gem started working with Vincent (Benedict Wong). After Gem’s weed farm goes wrong and all of the plants end up dying, Gem is now in debt with Vincent. This puts Gem in a situation that he cannot get out of. At the end of the episode, Joe is seen collecting drugs but a gunmen pulls up and ends up shooting him, stealing the large supply of drugs at the same time.
Dushane visits Joe in the hospital, attempting to find out who shot him and who now has the supply of drugs. Joe tells Dushane that it was the Albanians that caused all of this and that they have their supply of drugs. A member of the Summerhouse Estate has a cousin that works in a sport shop. They boast to the other crew members that their cousin will allow them to steal whatever they want. She takes Michael and another member to the sports shop and proceed to steal a pair of trainers. Whilst running from the security, Michael gets caught and taken to the Police station. Due to having drugs in his possession and a Police poster appealing for help in the Kamale murder investigation, he is questioned further. Michael ends up spilling the information that he has on Dushane and Sully and becomes an informant to the Police. Dushane finds out about the stealing of the shoes and goes mental, as well as finding out about Michael’s arrest. Michael eventually arrives back to the crew, stating to Dushane that he stated “No comment” to the Police and gave them no information. Sully and Mike meet up with a friend who is a former hitman and aware of hit that has been put out on someone. The friend offers the hit to both Sully and Mike in exchange for a cut of the money. After some negotiation, the trio agree on a price but it turns out the hit has been put out on Sully’s cousin, Jermaine (Ashley Thomas/Bashy). The pair meet up with Jermaine and give him the information and Jermaine is extremely grateful for this but Sully has other ideas. Sully and Mike end up kidnapping Jermaine in exchange for a fee of money from Rafe (Daniel Green), Jermaine’s brother, who is a known crew leader. After Dushane and Rihanna clearly hit it off, the pair end up sleeping together. They both are clearly into each other and Rihanna even offers a way out of Dushane’s criminal lifestyle, promoting her connections with people in property investment. The hairdressers that Lisa and her friend own, as well as Gem’s Dad’s, Mr Mustapha (Nabil Elouahabi), chip shop are eventually being sold and turned into flats by the Council.
Sully and Mike still have Jermaine held hostage with Jason also hanging around. Rafe, Jermaine’s brother, finds out about the whole situation and decides to pay them a visit. Rafe and one of his crew burst through the door but are unsuccessful in getting Jermaine back, this is when Rafe finds out that Sully is the one holding Jermaine captive. Sully and Mike end up with Jermaine at Jason’s place and things start getting too much for Mike. They realise they need to get this situation sorted but with no money appearing and Rafe on their tails, they start to panic. Sully pays Dushane a visit and asks for some help. Dushane in return ends up visiting Rafe, negotiating that Sully and Mike are to be left alone, in exchange for some money and the information on who originally put the hit out on Jermaine. Rafe agrees but there is no guarantee for Mike’s safety from Rafe. Dushane goes to visit Joe in the hospital again but he finds out that Joe has since passed away. Dushane is now aware of the whereabouts of the Albanians compound but needs to devise up a plan on how to get the drugs back. Ra’Nell is fed up of Vincent controlling Gem so decides to pay Vincent and visit and tell him what’s what. Unfortunately, Ra’Nell is beaten up by Vincent. Kayla (Michaela Coel) was around the time of Kamale’s disappearance so the Police end up bringing her in for questioning. Dushane asks Rihanna to tell Kayla not to let the Police know what happened but Rihanna starts getting increasingly frustrated with her involvement in this whole situation. Dushane and Sully are keeping watch the Albanians stomping crowd, trying to work out how to infiltrate their depot and get their drugs back. Shortly after, Dushane and Mike leave a club with Rafe walking up and shooting Mike dead.
Ra’Nell is still refusing to leave the house after getting beaten up by Vincent but the whole situation is also affecting Lisa and she has had enough. Gem’s Dad, Mr Mustapha (Nabil Elouahabi) is starting to get suspicious of Gem’s odd behaviour. Lisa approaches Dushane for some help on the matter, in which he agrees. Dushane and Dris arrive at Vincent’s shop, only for Mr Mustapha to run into the shop and stab Vincent in the leg, calling an end to his control over Gem. Mr Mustapha and Gem agree that they will be better off moving to Ramsgate and Gem goes to Ra’Nell to let him know, with the pair of friends leaving each other. Dushane has also kidnapped Kayla’s child as a means of bargaining for her not to cooperate with the Police. Dushane and Sully have linked up forces after Sully found a way into the Albanian compound without making too much noise. The drugs are retrieved after catching the rival crew off guard and Dushane, Sully and the rest of the crew flee the scene. Dushane orders one of his crew members to take Michael to his flat, awaiting Michael’s fate as a snitch. The pair are waiting at the flat with Michael getting increasingly suspicious. Unexpectedly, the Albanian crew end up at Dushane’s flat with them having killed the crew member and Michael hiding behind the sofa. They are clearly waiting for Dushane’s arrival but before he gets to the door, Michael runs out to the balcony to warn Dushane of who is in the flat. One of the Albanian grabs Michael and launches him over the balcony, sending him to his fate. Dushane is in shock and flee’s the scene and Season 2 arrives at an end.
Season 3 may not carry on from where it left off but of course, Dushane, Sully and the Summerhouse Estate will be in the picture. Michael Kamulete (Ra’Nell) does not appear to have been cast for the latest season so it is highly unlikely we will be hearing from him again. Giacomo Mancini (Gem) will be cast but how much airtime he will get all remains to be seen, especially with Gem having moved to Kent at the end of Season 2 and the fact he does not feature in the trailer. Watching an extended trailer, it appears that Sully has been spending time in prison and Dushane has been in Jamaica, making new links. Whilst both of them have been away, another crew has taken over Summerhouse with their leader Jamie now being the big name. The new season is due to feature the likes of Little Simz and Dave with Little Simz character a potential love interest of Dushane’s. We do not know whether Dave’s character is due to be a friend or foe for Dushane and Sully. Furthermore, we will also see more from Rafe, Rafe’s brother Jermaine, Dris and Jason.
Watch all the previous episodes of Top Boy Season 1 and Season 2 on Netflix.
Top Boy Season 3 will be dropping on Netflix this Friday.
Watch the extended Netflix trailer for Season 3 of Top Boy below on Rotten Tomatoes TV: