This season on Black Ink Crew: Chicago, Ryan Henry has been on a journey as he tries to figure out where he wants to take his business and his career. Now, it seems that Ryan knows what he needs to do to continue building his brand.
At the start of Season 5, Ryan tried to distance himself from the rest of his original 9Mag crew (with the exception of a few) as he built a whole new shop that did things a lot different than before. That caused even more friction and alienation for Ryan as many from the original 9Mag shared their anger about the new shop versus old shop situation and with the way Ryan made sure to keep the shops separate.
It turns out that wasn’t enough for Ryan, who has big plans to make the 9Mag brand even more prominent and respected. A lawsuit against the old shop by an unsatisfied Van’s client caused Ryan to separate himself from his old friends completely.
So what does he do? Of course, Ryan sits Don down to explain how he wants to close down the original 9Mag shop and lay off everyone working there. Not only that, but Ryan wants Don to break the news to everyone.
Don, one of the only members of Ryan’s original 9Mag crew who is moving to the new location with his brother Phor, does just that. He tells Charmaine what’s going on and as Black Ink Crew: Chicago viewers might imagine, it didn’t go well.
Don did his best to explain the end of the original 9Mag shop to Charmaine without actually saying Ryan fired her. What he did say is there wasn’t room at the new shop for a celebrity concierge, which is her title.
Charmaine tries to defend herself and tells Ryan she has a whole list of celebrities she “could” contact. He tells her that is the problem. It turns out that throughout the past season, Ryan let Van run the old shop and let the old crew do their thing to prove themselves, but they didn’t show any results. This lack of dedication is why he’s shutting the shop down and letting everyone go.
After letting everyone know he is closing the shop and there will be no long, drawn-out goodbye, Ryan took to the confessional to make his point again.
“Now, 9Mag is one shop,” Ryan said without emotion in the confessional. “End of story.”
Black Ink Crew: Chicago airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on VH1.