Things got...Malky up in here last time, who's ready to find out where it takes us on Billions? Will Chuck's three horse sting work? Will Bryan re-invent and re-invigorate himself? Let's find out on S3:E10 Redemption!
Oooh Chuck Rhoades Jr. (Paul Giamatti) has engineered another clandestine meeting, this time with reporter Randy Kornbluth (Brian Berrebbi) because he has a scoop! He's there to hand over the news of his office's indictment of a Carrie Camenetti, Buffalo Mayoral candidate who's apparently corrupt, but not, like, how Chuck is corrupt. In a totally DIFFERENT way, so they can be offered up as a trade. Randy knows there are no free lunches, what does Chuck want for this steamy front page? Just alllll the news that is not fit to print about Chuck's boss Waylon "Jock" Jeffcoat (the wonderfully walleyed Clancy Brown).
Chuck's tired of being pushed around by his boss, he does the pushing around in these parts! Randy warns Chuck: Jock's insulated, he's part of the well oiled political machine from Texas but there is that matter of his money...
Jock's rolling and it's associated with his brother the televangelist (TELL ME THAT'S ALSO CLANCY BROWN ROCKING GUYLINER AND CROCODILE TEARS AND I WILL GIVE YOU ANYTHING YOU WANT, BILLIONS), all that untraceable money.
Chuck shares the news with his team, Head of Crim Kate Sacker (Condola Rashad) and random prosecutor left over from Oliver Dake's team Karl Allard (Allan Harvey), they're surprised and not exactly enthusiastic. It's like they've never seen this show, of course Chuck will crush Jock! It's what he DO!
Chuck gives them a second to think about it, then they're both in and brainstorming paths to fruition. Oh I get it now, Jock's brother owns a Houston mega-church, maybe that's a reference to the guy who wouldn't let people in during the flooding. Be right back...Joel Osteen! That's the guy! Jock's brother is gonna be that guy!
Anyway, JoelJock owned the television stations that broadcast his proselytizing, which is apparently is a big deal. Chuck leans on Kate to talk to her dad, who knows all about media deals. Kate declines to involve her father but I'm pretty sure we'll be seeing him!
Chuck's (former? They're kinda pals now, amirite?) nemesis Bobby "Axe" Axelrod (Damian Lewis) is having a morning workout with tennis ace Maria Sharapova because of course he is. Grigor Andolov (John Malkovich) set it up, it's a "hey, enjoy this while I take out half my money!" distraction.
Grigor leaves, advising Maria to let Bobby win the next time, but they both know he's too smart to buy that.
Hey, Jock's come to see Chuck, hi! Jock's been thinking, he saw a bunch of "shitholes" on his way from the airport, he'd like Chuck to clean all those up by prosecuting all the drug cases they can find, and HARD. Nothing works to clean up areas (and fill prisons with free labour from people who can never vote against you) like prosecuting drug cases HARD.
I'm not going to argue with your writing, Billions, because presumably you get paid and stuff, but you could be just the teensiest little bit more subtle in drawing your characters.
Jock's brought his wife along on this trip, she'd sure like to eat somewhere other than a restaurant...*awkward pause* Chuck and Wendy would love to have Jock and his wife over for supper!
Do either of them cook?
Bobby's working the cap raise problem back at Axe Capital, CIO Taylor Mason (Asia Kate Dillon) is rolling along with their weird references and ready! Mike "Wags" Wagner (David Constabile) is surprised at the "sex wax" reference but admires the initiative! Taylor has been working the money like a pro.
Just then Ari Spyros (Stephen Kunken) bursts in, he's their former compliance officer (and current whipping boy), the news of Andolov taking all that money out has hit. Wags has an idea! South American dictator money!
Wags has a slightly better idea, Bobby could drag Raul Gomez (Rueben Santiago-Hudson) and his police fund back!
Raul...is not enthusiastic. He and his fund are enjoying the quiet returns from Michael Pane, guided by Bobby, it's too soon! Bobby asks him to go after the rest of the municipal employee pension funds, firefighters, etc.
I can't be the only one thinking of Sandicott, the town FunBobs and team destroyed through austerity after they had an unfortunate turn in their municipal pension funds. And I don't think firefighters are going to line up to give Bobby money after his 9/11 profiteering.
Chuck's gone around Kate to see her dad Frank (Harry Lennix) and hold on, I have to complain about IMDb because I haven't for awhile and it's not good to let them get cocky.
SO. Riddle me this, IMDb: why is Frank's surname listed as SACHER when Kate's is listed as SACKER. Presumably they would have the same name, being father and daughter, right? Or did Kate change her name to something less...Ch...for some reason? SPLAIN
Chuck's in the right place, Frank knows all about the Texas megachurch/TV deal but he's not allowed to do anything to mess up his own deals, including going after the most powerful lawmen in the country. Chuck ain't scurred, let's talk more broadly, Frank!
How about land deals? Leases? Conservation areas, eminent domain and all that stuff. Who could know about that stuff that happened around the time Jock was Governor of Texas?
Dr. Wendy Rhoades (Maggie Siff) finds Chuck freaking out in the bedroom, what's on the menu tonight, sugar plum?
Hahahahahaha. Also, Chuck's "her name is Anne. Probably goes by 'Mother'" HAHAHAHAHA
Back at Axe Capital, Bobby takes a call from Spartan Ives, dude's bringing the Kansas City Heavy Labourer's Construction fund and it's 500 million dollars for a look-see now that Bobby's got his icebreaker.
The Kansas City reps are conservative, easy on the sex shows, Axe.
Karl and Kate counsel Chuck to be gentle, gentle on his prosecution of Jock, they have to build the case anonymously. Kate sends Chuck at Ashley Cutler, who doesn't have a name in IMDB, but thankfully his maid rates a mention.
Cutler/Wolf Management is a front, though, a broom closet in midtown. There is a fancy house to check out, Karl rented a car for Chuck to use.
Ben Kim (Daniel K. Isaac) is fighting his timidity, he stood up to (screamingly racist) "Dollar" Bill Stearn (Kelly AuCoin) last time but he's still struggling to pitch. Dr. Wendy tries to help, but watching Ben die during a bathroom pitch, while trying to pee no less, is cringeworthy.
Dr. Wendy gets him focused again, he's stuck down in the bullpen because that's the easiest, safest, most comfortable place for him. He's afraid of trying, or being loud, of being big. She tells him to break out of his shell with a huge unexpected move, let's see what he comes up with!
Now I know why Ashley Cutler wasn't in IMDb, he's in the wind and it's only his maid (Amy Chang) left doing clean-up. Kate and Karl have been using encrypted wireless (sure you have), how could Cutler know? Chuck asks if Kate knows anyone in the FBI and boy, does she!
Bryan Connerty (Toby Leonard Moore) is a Fibbie now! Good thing Kate didn't mention who her guy was, since Chuck just fired Bryan for trying to prosecute him for corruption.
Raul couldn't get anyone to take Bobby's calls, so here our hedgie lunches with unpalatable Frotty Anisman (David Krumholtz, who has excellent in The Deuce) who can give him some of that sweet cash Bobby needs so desperately.
I liked Raul's point about Bobby trying to attract the same investors he had before, he's somewhat compromised now so he has to take what he can get.
Frotty will help Bobby, but he wants something in return.
He wants Bobby's glow! Bobby agrees but wants the option of buying Frotty out in a year if he wants, which will cost him a 40% premium.
Bobby's meeting made him late to his own son's birthday party, being held at his own apartment. His estranged wife Lara (Malin Ackerman) is there with all her family, they always hated Bobby. Now that he and Lara are divorcing, it's totally open season.
Haaay, speaking of Sandicott, Bruno (Arthur J. Nascarella) is there making pizza! It's complicated, but it was Bruno and his nephew who brought the news of a casino being built in Sandicott to longtime family friend Bobby. Once everything went sour, thanks to Chuck Rhoades Sr,. Bruno and Bobby were on the outs too, although Bobby was more conflicted about it than Lara.
Bobby asks Bruno: how did he stay away from all that filthy mob lucre back in the day? Bruno knew no seed money was worth the amount of points on those loans, and he enjoyed the way his family looked at him like he was a good person.
*sledgehammer driving point home*
Chuck and Wendy have borrowed Chef Ryan (Timothy Davis) from Bobby, that's pretty cosy, isn't it? Jock's holding forth about eating roadkill, tell me again how much money disguy has! His wife Anne Claudine Jeffcoat (Alice Barrett) watches in approval as Wendy and I roll our eyes. So where's Chuck?
Chuck has a tire blowout in the middle of the night on the side of a backroad without cell service.
He fumbles with a tire jack as Wendy dodges racist bullets flying alllll over her living room. He finally shows up to Jock sizing him up carefully, he knows Chuck's up to something big! He thinks it's some kind of a birthday surprise because that's how he got to be the biggest lawmen in Texas! Sure!
Taylor borrowed the Nomad for dinner with Oscar Langstraat (Mike Birbiglia) and some friends, one is Peyton Breen (Will Rogers) who's figured out how to monetize genomic mapping. Awww, I love Taylor and Oscar together, it seems to be going well! They look happy, but I'm on my guard for you, Taylor.
Frotty Anisman has made his way to Axe Capital to sign papers, the hedgies are abuzz. I'd been wondering if Frotty referenced frottage, newbie Bonnie (Sarah Stiles) explains it for the cheap seats. It's rubbing. In public. To get off, but not like, with consent.
Nobody can quite believe that Bobby's sunk to this level, not even Bobby.
Frotty ups the ante, he wants transparency for the trades because that's all Bobby has.
Bobby can't do it, he's got two kids at home who think he can fly (well until you keep sending them for dinner with your administrative assistant and showing up late to their birthday parties), he can't let them down by signing with these greaseball and his unsanitary food habits.
Wags hopes Bobby has something else in the hopper!
Kate and Chuck have tracked down Cutler in a no-tell motel on the way to Caracas. Cutler is vulnerable because he's lost a LOT of the Jeffcoats money. Or has he? He's been washing it for Jock through a cable scam and he's willing to testify against Jock and his brother.
Bryan overhears Kate's FBI agent (Gary Wilmes) talking about Chuck and gleans a little bitta information, he wants to nail Chuck so bad he can taste it.
Taylor's been handling the Kansas City gang perfectly, ohhhh but Ben Kim's decided this is his moment to shine and I almost can't watch. Wendy tries to stop him, chasing and whispering "not now!! Not now!!" but the die is cast and I'm watching between my fingers.
Nelly's "Hot In Hurr" plays as Ben twerks and strips in the giant crowded elevator as Bobby frantically tries to stop him. Wags is just enjoying the show.
Bobby got his answer from the Kansas City group in the room even, which is unheard of!
Which made me laugh more than it should have.
Ben is finally able to pitch! He thinks there is a Dutch merger something something rental cars waffles something!
"Maybe next time keep your shirt on."
Ooooh, Bobby stole Taylor's tip for genomic mapping! In fact, he stole it from their boyfriend Oscar! So here I've been so worried about Oscar selling them out I didn't think Taylor would jeopardize his business. Neither did Taylor.
They talk to Oscar then come see Dr. Wendy for a session. They're devastated.
Kate's just found out that Chuck talked to her dad, she's not happy that he did that but now Chuck owes her. Chuck is willing to dole out that chit, regardless of whether it bites him later. He's just happy to have her with him now.
Supper with Grigor and his family, yaaay! Grigor digs how Bobby didn't whine and complain when he took away most of his money, he just went to work and found some MORE questionable money. Grigor was just testing Bobby, he's going to put it all back.
We getta meet some of Grigor's family, a mute three year old girl (THEY COME IN "QUIET"?) and his terrified-looking mom. There is plenty he would kill for, all of his family has killed for him too. Ahhhhh, Bobby's figured out the riddle, Grigor was the boy in his story, the one who took the wine from the rich stranger while his mother was being raped. Huh.
They agree they are fortunate men, fortunate to have met at that time in this place. Bobby drives home and HOPEFULLY SEES HIS BLOODY KIDS. No! He goes to see his mom!! And it's Patti D'Arbanville!! Wooooo and we're out!
So. It was so sad to see Taylor realise they'd gone off the deep end into Axe Capital moves; they thought they were only dipping in a toe with all that sex wax talk. They looked so devastated in the embrace with Wendy.
Also interesting is that now we're supposed to view Grigor Andolov as a survivor like Bobby instead of a maniacal tyrant rapist. We'll just see about that. I don't know if I'm ready to get past all the "ripped my arm off because I didn't give him my stuff fast enough" but maybe it'll turn out that was poor Uncle Max of the industrial farming incident that Grigor's using for cover. I love the addition of Patti D'Arbanville to the cast, let's dig into Bobby's past!
This episode was all about family and the ties that bind, I hope Bobby finally realises soon that he's missing all the good stuff with his kiddos. I hear later they don't even want to know you, so capitalize while they still think you hung the moon, FunBobs.
I'm sad we don't see much of Lara this season, I didn't like her but I dug disliking her, if that makes any sense? Not in an over-the-top super villain kind of way, but she didn't go out of her way to be likeable and I enjoyed the writers not having her pander.
Until next time!