We're back with Billions; I couldn't get it early this week (boooo!!) but I got it now, let's roll!
Last week Bobby bought very expensive naming rights on a beautiful building, the week before that a $62 million dollar beach home; let's see what else his bottomless pockets can snarf up!
We are at the home of Albus McNair, publisher extraordinaire and reader of Flaubert and Tolstoy (or so he'd have us think) and a screenplay called "9-12 The Day After" by June Raichlein (Melissa Errico) who I assume is the nubile young lady bouncing on his johnson.
Elsewhere, Bryan has a hot date with a saucy minx (wanna beer? Let's just fcuk) and she has to talk him into slinging some D but he ponies up and they're off. I'm sure I'll figure out who she is any minute.
Gross old Albus is the very picture of Roman decadence on the wane
I may have been watching Mr. Robot too much, sorry. Anyway: he a LOT older than our June and she seems much closer to orgasm when she's discussing the promotion of her book than when she's taking the Magic Creper's Ride. He swears he doesn't usually sleep with his authors, soooo, lucky June!
Bobby is waiting for a YumTime bakery truck, he takes some of their wares into his house with Ben, the young analyst from the fancy school. I'm not positive, but I believe this was the deal with the unusual shorting pattern that Butch was skeptical of and that Bobby was using to flush out a leak in his organization.
Ben doesn't want to eat the TwinkieProcessedGarbage, but Bobby teaches him a lesson that Stanford apparently did not: whenever you get a chance, put a company in your mouth. And wow, it's a little early in the morning for fellatio allusions, innit, FunBobs? Apparently the quality of the deepfried snack goods has dipped and that's a problem for Bobby.
Meanwhile, Bryan's play pal is waking up and getting a call from Jack, I'm wondering if that's the Fibbie I thought was sleeping with Tara. It is, her name is Terri (Susan Misner) and the call was about a hedge fund manager for Decker that is about to flip on him and I never quite figured out who Decker was last time.
Chuck is recognised while busting a dog owner's balls for not cleaning up after his dog, AGAIN, and when asked why he doesn't just "let it slide" he launches into a speech about mounting shit invading THE FABRIC OF OUR LIVES!!! Seriously, they need to back the fcuk off the writing in this show, it's just too stagey and ridiculous. I no longer think it's just Paul Giamatti, that dialogue would be unwieldy in any hands.
ANYWAY, he talks Random DogShit Repeat Offender Without a Bag into picking up not only his own dog's excrement, but other bits just laying around. I am gonna make sure I never run into whoever writes this show, because they have a dirty, dirty bathroom fetish that I am not down with. Imma stay hiding in BumCuddle, Nowhere, Alberta and that should work out just fine.
Chuck gets a call about the Decker investigation being blown; he thinks the same people that engineered that are involved and figures Bobby Axelrod and his special peni-measuring party with the GinjaNinjaBankster will be poorly attended.
At YumTime, we're confronted with this smirking visage, here known as Hutch Bailey III (Jeremy Bobb) but I know as the smarmy ahole Herman from The Knick!
He gets a call that Bobby is buying up his company, which worries him, seemingly unduly. Meanwhile, it's a big YumTime party at Axe Financial and Wags is talking to Dr. Rhoades something called ATM and I am so scurred to look that up...oh. I think it's referring to a sexual act involving transferring microbes from one orifice into another because the order is wrong and DO NOT GO ATM! Oh and thanks, he actually lays it right out for us, guess I could have saved myself a trip to UD. I think he's trying to shock her, because he goes on at great length with all kinds of fun-sounding but unsanitary expressions, but he is barking up the wrong Dominatrix tree there. Seriously, writers.
At any rate, he thinks it's an acceptance of the very basest part of him and I've heard that about g*lden sh*wers before as well. She tells him it's about power dynamics and dominance and asks what's going on at work? It turns out that Maria has been negotiating hard at for a new deal and Wags doesn't like it. He's gonna make an example of Maria by cutting back her time and out of deals and by the end of her two year contract, she'll be worth a quarter of what she is currently. ATM indeed. Whether she likes it or not, says Dr. Rhoades.
Lara is at the gym, and runs into June, who ahhhhh was the woman who Lara threatened in the first episode. She was the person who spoke up against Bobby in the big college education giveaway meeting!
She looked much younger and relaxed bouncing on old Albus there. Anyway, Lara hears all about June's upcoming book tour from June's friend and I just BET that will no longer be happening. June looks nervous, as well she should be, as Lara calls Shari (Kaliswa Brewster) in Communications.
Bobby is meeting with Donny (David Cromer), and the shite is being spread nice and thick. Bobby tells Donnie to start with 200 thousand shares of Rubinex, which Donnie calls a "big position" but Wags says they are not uncertain, which we know means that the fix is in. They reference baseball and the World Series and tell him he's gonna be Brian Doyle; Wikipedia tells me that's a GOOD thing.
In Chuck's office, he's wheeling and dealing with Amelia (Tamara Tunie) from the FCC who has Bobby Axelrod in her sights but it doesn't go as well as he had hoped. They had really hoped to have that flipper guy to flip for THEM and surely these hedge funds are just LOADED with crooked peeps to run ATM on, right? I just made myself slightly ill, sorry bout that. Bryan and Terri make the googly eyes, which isn't fooling ANYONE.
Bobby is meeting (informally) with the board members of YumTime, which he owns 5% of, but is looking to increase his position: they can get on board or get on the bus. Wags suggests that Hutch Bailey III is the reason for the years of declining profit and Bobby says he isn't here for a Declaration of War, but rather to act as a Beacon of Hope. The career business people in the room sideeye his rhetoric and point out that Hutch IS YumTime and will be forever. Jerome Perkeiser is the head of the board of directors and the man in power, until he is in line, nothing will happen. It was a fishing expedition; Wags and Bobby now know what their real target is.
The female board member Evelyn is having a sexytime meeting with Chuck Rhoades Sr, who recognises Bobby's declaration letter immediately as Bobby knowing about his and Evelyn's affair and a brush-back pitch to Chuck Jr. Allow me to say; I even know what that is! It's when a pitcher throws a ball very close to a batter who is crowding the plate: to get him or her to "brush back". Yay sports analogies!
He suggests she go "lobby" Jerome Perkheiser, given how "persuasive" she is, but not now, because honey, he took a pill! You know, I like them older, I like them smart, I like them gently rounded, but I am so glad my job does not require me to fcuk geriatrics for favour. Side note: I do not have a job.
Lara is meeting with Shari from Communications, who produces a copy of June's manuscript while Lou, Lara's sister, serves up some grub. Shari has skimmed the book and says congrats on the Stanford Doctorate (big donation) and watch out for Chapter 10: ees problem.
Back to Chuck's office, where he's putting the squeeze on Don King to hand off one of his prosecutions to Amelia so Chuck can get his Decker-flipper back. It's like Game of Thrones with few ACTUAL beheadings and assaults, right?
Don doesn't want to give up his two years on his case OR be cross-designated but realises eventually that he's just gonna have to grab his ankles and take it. Chuck offers to send over bumlube which prompts the query: what's the difference between bumlube and regular lube? Viscosity, says Chuck.
This show really likes butts, hey? It's like they think it's edgy, the same way people thought Kanye's bum-play texts were real and not a publicity stunt.
Wendy is conflicted about the conversation with Wags; Maria is also a patient and Wendy knows she's about to be crushed. Wendy talks about it with Lilly Smith (Catherine A Callahan), whose credentials I am not quite sure of. Lilly advises Wendy to triage, work on what's most important first
Wags and Bobby are discussing strategy with regard to Jerome Perkheiser approach; Wags demurs the initial approach because Jer is "folksy" and folksy people tend to think he's a rapacious scumbag. I agree with Bobby: we ALL think that.
Chuck makes his deal with Amelia, unfortunately ending up with Spyros on his team. Terri and Bryan start surveillance of Peter Decker (Scott Cohen), who they call a good father but "fcuk you, go home and play with your kids!" which is foreplay for these two? They arrest Peter after the kids clear
Lara is meeting with Bobby's lawyer to discuss chapter 10 of June's manuscript, he says it's borderline as far as defamation goes: did Bobby do those things? That's the crux of it. The lawyer says they have three options: 1) let her publish and rebut (which devolves into talk of goat fcuking), 2) buy the publishing house and kill it (too loud) and 3) have the lawyer go "reason" with her. Lara has other ideas
June is trying to get into her ballet class, guess whose name is mysteriously off the list?
Chuck is gearing up for his play: The Prisoner's Dilemma. In comes Decker; first one to take the deal gets a lollipop! Chuck asks for Bobby straight up, when Decker demurs he brings up a mythical other flipper just DYING to take a deal earlier to spill about Bobby. Out walks Decker, so Chuck can yell at stinky Spyros and his cologne about his inept interruptions.
Bobby is eating pizza with Jerome Perkheiser at Bruno's and they start off with making a big deal about the sauce being made from San Marzano tomatoes, which cost more but Bruno says are much better and worth it. I understand the point they're making about the decline in YumTime's taste quality, but I have to step in and say: San Marzanos are BULLSHIT. Cook's Illustrated Ltd. did product and taste testing on these mythical tomatoes and it turns out they are actually far worse than regular tomatoes, when canned. Anyway, back to the story, Bobby calls this style of pizza making Verache, or of truth I guess, to pizza's Neapolitano roots. I bet none of that is spelled right!
Perkheiser is intrigued, if only because most people wooing him feed him steaks and expensive wine. Did you not catch the San Marzano lesson above, Jerome??? Bobby spins a tale about declining quality of the YumTime brand, given it's changed recipe and Hutch the Third in his G6 jet. Bobby says YumTime will go the same way as Ebengers, and Perk asks "who is Ebengers?" EXACTLY says Bobby's smirk.
June is having a rough morning, she arrives for a round of golf, but goodness, Stuart will NOT be on her bag for her or any of her friends; the head of the membership committee wants to talk to her and they gave away her tee time. Do you think she understands yet?
YumTime is having Bobby speak at the board meeting; Hutch calls him a carpetbagger and a raider and we get to talk about the recipe a bit. Bobby suggests streamlining corporate compensation packages, like the G6, to offset costs and started-at-22-as-a-Vice-President Hutch jumps in to declare that he EARNED that jet and hey! Bobby has a jet. Bobby says he earned HIS jet. Ohhhhh, Perkheiser moves to remove Hutch entirely and Persuasive Evelyn is confused: this isn't what they discussed? Maybe she couldn't hear so well from all the way down there with her mouth full, I understand ENT doctors think these areas are all closely connected. And the motion carries and Hutch is OOT. Evelyn is also out, and Bobby is in her seat on the board.
Dr. Rhoades is meeting with Maria now, who has an ugly couple of years ahead of her. Maria calls Wags respectful and endearing and I did not see that whatsoever. Dr. Rhoades is either hypnotising or encouraging Maria to look to the future; her tone changes when talking about various points and she asks Maria to imagine herself at the other company.
June is finally realising the extent of the Axelrod reach as her kiddo gets denied entry into the prestigious school he or she was a lock for: flipping out and going crazy, honestly. If I ever get that crazy about a university placement for my kiddos, you have my permission to smack me across the face. Hard.
Chuck Sr. and Jr. are having supper; Jr. will neither be brushed back OR play into the charade of loving husband that his adulterous dad is playing (say Happy Anniversary to mom, you know, your wife!) and out he goes.
Wendy helps Maria carry her things out, thank feck for that. Wags looks on in sadness, he was really looking forward to two years of unknowing ATM with her.
Chuck and staffers are going over the Decker case late into the night; Decker's parents have an eight figure net worth from the combined income of a retired 8th grade teacher and a sales clerk. All those statements go to their son's address, though, so the implication is clear: he's been hiding money with his parents and their church-going Conservative bums are now leverage for Chuck.
Bryan questions if they parents even know about the money; all this new sexy integrity of Bryan's isn't impressing Chuck as much as it did Terri. Chuck turns his attention to Kate (Condola Rashad) and asks her to join their investigation, which she excitedly accepts.
June shows up at Lara's house with a revised manuscript, bet it's down a chapter! She asks Lara to read it and offers to sign a Non Disclosure Agreement, which Lara whips out immediately. Just to make sure June knows who she's dealing with, Lara mentions that June's son's application to Stanford looks like a go after all. Yay.
And we have a glowing Hitachi Magic Wand, a restrained Chuck and an irritated Wendy:
She's mad because he is NOT present. I can't even say how glad I am they decided to talk instead of use the Wand on camera. Chuck can't get past the fact that his dad was Bobby's target because of him and she electrocutes him a couple of time to get his attention and leaves him to stew with it. I'm having a little more trouble buying her as a Domme this time, maybe because I can see her face and she's kind of doing her therapy voice.
Lara and Bobby are discussing June's manuscript and move to completely realistic sex for those married for 20 years. Wendy is moping in the bathroom in full Domme gear and on a whim, she calls Maria and asks to start investing with her. I gather she's chosen her side in the Chuck and Axe battle to come.
Wendy comes out of the bathroom to find Chuck dressed and reading the paper; no cattle prodding tonight! Is it weird that I keep wondering where they get all this time from? I mean, they both work late, feed the kids, eat late and then who has a couple of hours for complicated role play on a school night? They decide on ice cream and TV instead, now THAT is realistic married sex for the two decade set.
Chuck and Bryan show up at Peter Decker's kids Little League game, they're here to serve subpoena on his parents and this is using the leverage: let's see if he teeters or totters. Chuck tightens the screws with a weekend stay in prison for the elder Deckers and Peter crumples like a wet napkin. Now. That may seem mean, and it is, BUT, Chuck didn't involve dude's parents in his illegal dealings: Decker did. And now he gets to make it right by serving his own petard hoisted. Out with WAR, good gawd y'all
So: I don't know. Some of the dialogue is clunky but they succeeded in making me care about at least one person: Maria. Okay, she's not a lead or anything, but it's a start. As for the story, things are slowly moving to their inevitable conclusion, a showdown between Chuck and Bobby involving several strawmen, assplay and domination as therapy. Deuces, poopers.