I’m still trying to process it all. Terrence Howard’s recent interview with Rolling Stone is anything but uninteresting, but that’s not always a good thing. Howard’s career has had its share of highs and lows. Right now he’s riding the Lucious Lyon wave of fame that Empire has brought him. But with fame comes the skeletons. In Howard’s case, lots of them.
In the Rolling Stone interview, Howard goes full Lucious as he describes his tumultuous childhood and past relationships with women. Howard’s life wasn’t a crystal stair, and one incident involving his father proves just that.
When Howard was 2, his father, Tyrone, stabbed a man in front of him.
“I was standing next to my father, watching,” Howard said. “Then stuff happened so quickly—blood was on the coats, on our jackets—and then my dad’s on a table and then my dad is gone to prison.”
It’s hard to imagine a 2-year-old remembering details, but the mind works in mysterious ways.
“My daddy taught me, ‘Never take the vertebrae out of your back or the bass out of your throat. I ain’t raisin’ sheep. I raised men. Stay a man.’ But being a man comes with a curse because it’s not a society made for men to flourish anymore,” Howard said. “Everything is androgynous, you know? The more successful men now are the effeminate.”
Which is another attitude that has gotten him heat. Not that he cares.
“The people that judge you don’t matter. They’re not real. Everything is just frequencies,” Howard said.
And then there are Howard’s issues with domestic violence, which have recently played out in court with ex-wife No. 2, Michelle Ghent.
“I don’t talk about my ex-wife because I don’t talk about negative things,” Howard told the writer. But Howard did try to explain why Ghent ended up with a black eye during a Costa Rican vacation.
“She was trying to Mace me,” he says, “and you can’t see anything, so all you can do is try to bat somebody away, and I think that something caught her. But I wasn’t trying to hit her.”
And before Ghent, there was his first wife, whom he was accused of punching with a closed fist. So why did that happen?
“She was talking to me real strong, and I lost my mind and slapped her in front of the kids,” he said. “Her lawyer said it was a closed fist, but even slapping her was wrong.”
I guess he at least admitted he was wrong?
But relationships with women aren’t the only things Howard is bad at. There’s also math.
As a student at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, N.Y., Howard said, he questioned his professor because he didn’t think one times one equals one.
“How can it equal one?” Howard said. “If one times one equals one, that means that two is of no value because one times itself has no effect. One times one equals two because the square root of four is two, so what’s the square root of two? Should be one, but we’re told it’s two, and that cannot be.”
After reading the Rolling Stone article, it’s not hard to figure out that there are a few things Howard is currently struggling with. Math, relationships and conforming don’t seem to be things he wants to fix.