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Michael Rainey Jr., Tariq, Power

Michael Rainey Jr.: Playing Tariq on ‘Power’ Makes People Dislike Me

Michael Rainey Jr. stopped by Hot 97’s Ebro in the Morning show Thursday and spoke about his role on the Starz hit series Power. The actor shared the adverse reactions he gets on the street because of how poorly Tariq is perceived on the show.

Rainey shared a story about an encounter he had with a viewer while riding an elevator. “A guy was like, ‘If I had a belt right now, I would beat your a**,'” he said. When the young actor told him it was just a television show, the man responded, “It’s not a TV show to me!”

Fans including show host Ebro Darden fault Tariq for the death of his twin sister, Raina. Rainey said he believes “Raina got herself killed,” because of how she handled all the information she discovered. Power viewers are also up in arms at the boy’s proclivity for the street life despite coming from an affluent upbringing.

Hear what Rainey had to say about it all in the video below.


Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.