In Swarm, Marissa is Dre’s foster sister, and while the two women are not very similar, they are still very close. Marissa’s untimely death changes Dre for the worse. Marissa is played by Chloe Bailey in Swarm.
Marissa and Dre have been Ni’Jah’s fans since they were teenagers. While Marissa still likes the superstar, she is not as passionate about her as Dre. Marissa is an adult now with problems of her own, but, unlike her, Dre refuses to move on.
Marissa and Dre’s relationship
Dre refers to Marissa as her sister. The two women live together, and Marissa’s boyfriend, Khalid, visits Marissa often. As Dre and Marissa both love Ni’Jah’s music, when they were younger, the two had a fan account on Twitter dedicated to Ni’Jah.
While Dre still likes handling the account, Marissa is no longer interested in running it, as she understands that the people online are not their friends but crazy fans of Ni’Jah.
However, Marissa still likes Ni’Jah and makes Dre promise that one day they will meet her; Dre will later go to extreme lengths to keep this promise for Marissa’s sake as well as for her own.
Dre buys expensive tickets to Ni’Jah’s concert, which she cannot afford, as a birthday present for Marissa. As a result, she does not have the money to pay their rent, which Marissa has to arrange on her own, but she does not complain much.
Marissa is Dre’s only friend because Dre does not fit in with people her age. One of them tells her that she does not want to invite her out for drinks because Dre just sits there and watches, making others nervous. Marissa, on the other hand, is liked by most people.
Marissa and Dre’s history
Later, when Dre’s past comes to light, it is revealed that Marissa’s parents took Dre under their care. Marissa’s parents were in need of money, and they were able to get some extra cash by fostering Dre.
Although Dre seemed odd to everyone, Marissa was happy to have a sister, even if it was a foster sister. Marissa was popular and was liked by the students at school but Dre was not.
Marissa stood up for Dre and always defended her. Their close bond bothered Marissa’s father, who could not understand their relationship.
On Marissa’s birthday, her parents invited her friends for a sleepover. Marissa’s parents hoped that spending time together would make Marissa’s friends bond with Dre, but things did not go as planned.
When the other girls tried to pull a prank on Marissa and jumped on her, an enraged Dre attacked one of the girls and stabbed her. After the incident, Marissa’s father sent Dre back to state care.
However, Marissa decided to live with Dre once they were older, despite her father’s wishes. Her father did not approve of Marissa asking them for money to pay the rent because Dre could not pay her share.
Marissa’s father believes that bringing Dre to their house was the biggest mistake of his life.
Marissa and Dre work at a shop in a mall. One day, when Marissa gets the opportunity to do a celebrity’s makeup, she leaves Dre in charge of the shop without their boss’ knowledge.
The shop gets vandalized when Dre leaves it for a few minutes, which means that both of them could lose their jobs. Marissa realizes it is time for her to distance herself from Dre, as some space might help both of them.
She goes to Khalid’s house and tells Dre that she is planning to move in with him. She also tells her that she will be going to Atlanta with him for her birthday and not to Ni’Jah’s concert. Marissa is not doing this to punish Dre, but she is doing this for herself because she needs it.
To stop Marissa, Dre tells her that Khalid tried to cheat on Marissa with her, but Marissa does not believe her, as Dre usually has a problem with the men Marissa dates.
After Marissa leaves, Dre goes out and sleeps with a stranger. The next morning, she realizes that she missed Marissa’s calls and messages. Marissa found out that Dre was telling the truth; Khalid is cheating on her.
She got into a fight with Khalid, and she needed Dre to be there for her. When Dre missed her calls, Marissa killed herself in her room, listening to Ni’Jah’s latest song. Marissa’s parents do not let Dre attend Marissa’s funeral.
Missing Marissa’s calls becomes the biggest regret of Dre’s life; she loses everything in a day. With no one by her side, Dre now only cares about meeting Ni’Jah and defending her, even if that means committing murders.