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Sometimes, you have to do the wrong things for the right reasons.
—Desna Simms

Desna Simms is one of the major protagonists in the series Claws, played by Niecy Nash. She is the owner of Nail Artisan of Manatee County.

Biography Edit

Early Life Edit

Desna Simms is an orphan, brought up together with her brother Dean. They have had a time where they had moved from foster family to foster family. The two were once fostered by the Combses, whom abused and neglected them as children. How they manage to leave their home has yet to be told.[1][2]

Desna and Dean moved into a house in Palmetto, Florida. She opens Nail Artisan of Manatee County in the Plaza and hires her friends--Jennifer, Quiet Ann, and Polly--to work alongside her. Upon setting up the interior, she meets Roller Husser, Jenn's brother in-law. The women of the shop tease that Desna's lack of attraction was due to appearances before returning back to business. Without warning, the police enter and corner Polly in the shop, Desna informing her that she will work a way to get her out of prison.

During this time, she forms a relationship with Roller. They converse a bit about their family and the Dixie Mafia. Desna mentions that she wishes to make money to help her crew. After staying over one night at her place, Roller meets Dean and solves a rat problem; replying to his comment about hiring exterminators, Desna tells him that she hopes to make enough money to move out and into something better suited for her and her brother. Left to think it over, she decides to join the operations with the Dixie Mafia, laundering the money profiting from the Suncoast Rejuvenation clinic.

Over time, she visits the clinic and launders over the money for the Mafia. Desna pays Polly a visit in prison, where she tells her everything that has happened since her imprisonment. She mentions that the doctor that previously worked at the clinic has "retired," being replaced with Dr. Kenneth Brickman. Out of fear that she may someday succum to the same fate, Desna relays the safe word "ambrosia" in the case that one of them was in danger.[3]

Before New Years Edit

Desna drives to her nail salon, alongside Jenn and Ann. As the women collectively get their things and leave their cars, they converse about the upcoming New Years party; Desna shows Jenn an outfit she picked out for the occasion. She, then, displays her strut before asking Jenn about hers. The two ask Ann to perform a strut of her own, whom hesitates for a moment.

The women entered the salon and prepared for another day a business until Ann gave a signal. Desna and the group hid and surprised Polly upon her release and return to Nail Artisan. They soon broke apart and returned to their stations upon the arrival of Virginia, whom snarled about her missed invitation.

A packed shop, Desna worked on the nails of Brenique who shares a story about a house party that went sour. When Roller visited the salon, Desna gave Virginia the task of applying a top coat while she walked to the back office to speak with Roller, Ann guarding the door from the outside. As the two began to speak, Roller pulled his pants down and engaged in intercourse with Desna. He requested that she performed another run for Uncle Daddy; she asked about her $20,000 bonus at the end of the day. During the sex, Desna is told to squeeze his neck, which she reluctantly does. A climax later, she stands over him and nudges him to wake.

After he left the salon, Desna turns to Jenn and Polly to make another run to the clinic. Polly made the suggestion of letting her and Virginia make the run, though Desna quickly denounces it. When Virginia begins to question what was being talked about, Desna redirects her to the back office, where the two have a brief discussion over whether her assistance is needed. She, then, leaves with Jenn alongside her to launder the profits for the day. While inside, Ken informed Desna over the Russians in the waiting room that have not moved since entering the building. Though she tells him to call Roller, Ken continued that he did not want to bother him and wanted her to handle it. Instead, she leaves with Jenn with the money, wishing Ken a Happy New Year.[4]

Covering the Murder Edit

Shocked by the situation that transpired, Desna and Virginia pull Roller's body from the pool. They contemplate what to do next, agreeing that it was best to dump him where he could not be found. Desna chooses to use a boat by the dock. The two women wrap his body in a tar and drag it to the boat. Dumping him inside, the two turned on the boat, poured liquid gasoline on its inside, set it ablaze, and undone the ropes that kept it by the dock before hurrying back.

Quickly, Desna fabricated a story for Virginia to memorized. While Virginia collected some of her belongings, Desna attempts to reload a pistol before she is aided. She accidentally fires a shot into the floor, startling one another before aiming and shattering one of the glass windows.[5]

Entrapped Edit

Being forced back into her car, Desna continues to plead with Roller not to kill her and to call Uncle Daddy about the situation.


The two eventually reach an abandoned theme park, where the Russians Boris and Yuri confront Roller, ready to kill him. While distracted, Desna attempts to run away but is once more taken and forced to walk on a boardwalk. She is then forced to her knees, once more pleading not to be murdered. She even goes as far as to confess that she loved him wholeheartedly and that his hesistation is only because he feels the same way. Glancing behind him, she warns him that someone was coming for him, Roller turning his attention to the unknown assilant. Desna, however, runs in the other direction, getting as far away from Roller as she could.[3]

Personality Edit

Desna is shown to be passionate, caring, and often supportive of her friends and loved ones around her. She sits as a mother figure to her autistic brother Dean and provides him with an environment that best suits his needs. Whenever betrayed or disrespected, however, Desna is powered to go after those that do her or those loved.

Appearances Edit

Appearances for Desna Simms

Relationships Edit

Family Edit

Allies Edit

Enemies Edit

Memorable Quotes Edit

"Baby, baby, squeeze my neck."
--Desna, about Roller. (Tirana)
"Malala's got nothing on you, boo."
--Desna, to Virginia. (Quicksand)
"Get in line."
--Desna (Fallout)

Gallery Edit

Trivia Edit

References Edit

Navigation Edit

Claws Characters
Groups Desna's DivasDixie MafiaHaitian's OrganizationRussian's Organization
Nail Artisan Quiet AnnJennifer HusserVirginia LocPolly MarksDesna Simms
Dixie Mafia BaylorBrienneBryce HusserClay HusserJuanda HusserRoller HusserChip LauderdaleTedToby
The Russians BorisZlata OstrovskyRivaYuriYuri II
The Haitians Gregory RuvalMatilde Ruval
Others AriaAudreyBreniqueConfetta BrinksBastilleSally BatesBethArlene BranchKenneth BrickmanCeceChoiCicilyKeith CoombsSandy CoombsCythniaEdCarl HargroveHank GluckMandy HeiserJasonJeffJoelleKellyKikiApril KimLamontPeggy LiptonLondonMadisonMargeMarilynMarnieMattMerleMontyGladys PiretteAnnabeth ReidRelevanceSarahScarletShellyDean Simms
For a complete list of minor characters, see List of Minor Characters.