Season 6, Episode 2: ‘Lyin’s Eyes’
If you’re looking into the future of “Billions,” then I think two quotes from this week’s episode will point the way forward. The first story comes from Wendy Rhoades, describing to Taylor Mason her fear that their boss, Mike Prince, might have a narcissistic personality disorder: “He thinks he’s better than everyone else and he He won’t stop until he gets what he wants.”
The second sentence comes from Chuck Rhoades, describing his newfound madness method: “No one is safe.”
We’re going to tackle half of Chuck’s previous episode. Inspired by the bravery of Gene Hackman’s thief character in David Mamet’s crime drama “Heist,” which he watches in the comfort of his up-and-coming ranch, Chuck returns to the City. New York with the intention of raising some hell. He found what he was looking for in the circumstances of the city’s gatekeepers, who have worked long and hard on behalf of wealthy tenants who fled the city during Covid- 19 occurred, leaving their servants on the front lines of the pandemic.
The point is that despite the favorable response to Chuck’s fiery rhetoric, the gatekeepers union is perfectly satisfied with the 2% increase in tenants and the property management’s willingness to provide them. So Chuck unilaterally raised the temperature, first by blowing up the negotiations with a 5% demand, then by threatening to hit the union tax authorities if they did not strike at his command.
After successfully attracting the union to make his bid, he turned his attention to his main target: billionaires, whom he called the “criminal class,” represented by Bud Lazarra (Wayne Duvall) is rude and has a ruddy face. Lazzara defiantly thumbs her nose at Chuck’s threats and convinces the union to stop the strike and make the original deal – but only through bribery, an act caught on camera by Chuck’s lieutenant Karl Allard, who wanders after Vincent (The Chin) Gigante dons a bathrobe to capture the sinister footage.
When Chuck confronts Lazzara with his information, bigwig bends… but Chuck betrays him to the press anyway. The message is clear: His battle against billionaires is in a completely prisoner-free regime.
Considering Mike Prince’s signature behavior elsewhere in the episode, this might be the right approach. Well, things started off pretty well, with Prince announcing his intention to sell stock in a sports apparel company called Rask for its use of forced labor in China’s mass Uyghur detention camps.
This move sent people spinning around the Michael Prince Capital. Victor Mateo (Louis Cancelmi), the company’s permanent resident, warns that the company is all but unsinkable. Taylor Mason says there’s no problem predicting the boss’s next move: They’ll use athletes and influencers to ruin the brand’s reputation while they’re busy selling their stock. the firm.
Rian (Eva Victor), the rising star of Taylor Mason Carbon, sees an opportunity: There are other players in the field with an even dirtier human rights record, and Mase Carb could be easy to destroy. this entire field. When Taylor told her not to do the play, she did, prompting Taylor to discuss with Wendy Rhoades whether firing Rian was the right move. They thought it was too much like the Ax, and a purified Rian was released from the ax, no pun intended.
Finally, it’s Wags, who has the funniest reaction of the bunch: He’s worried for the CEO of Rask, with whom he formed the cover band Eagles at a rock ‘n’ roll fantasy camp . His sneaky advice almost allowed the company to salvage itself with an acquisition until Prince and his right-hand man, Scooter Dunbar, forced Wags to kill the deal by further dirtying: Rask has been in bed with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un for many years. This act killed the company for its sake, though it also resulted in Wags being expelled from the band. You sometimes win, sometimes you lose!
At this point, you may be wondering, where would a diagnosis of narcissistic personality disorder for Prince work? After all, he did exactly what he said he would do: knock down a crooked company.
But as Taylor says, he’s playing on a much larger board than just the market. Prince’s real plan is to complete his mission to host the Rask-sponsored Olympics in Los Angeles, hoping to move the 2028 games to the Big Apple, which will take his estranged wife, Andy (Piper Perabo) ), an Olympic-level climbing coach, returned to his orbit. Indeed, she was so impressed with his plan that she accepted his dinner offer, an overwhelming feat she had previously declined.
So maybe it’s all just a great romantic gesture, as Wendy and Taylor have contemplated – or maybe it’s the move of a self-appointed master of the universe, regulating world events. according to his will. But when you have money and power like Mike Prince, is there any distinction between personal lust and sociopolitical manipulation? I know the answer Chuck Rhoades will give.
This week’s guest stars: rock climber Alex Honnold, golfer Michael Breed and journalist Olivia Nuzzi. Honnold and Nuzzi were even featured prominently in the show’s plot, in which Honnold heads the charge of online influencers against Rask and Nuzzi plots Lazzara’s bribery scheme.
Since I heard directly from some of my readers supporting me when I wasn’t following this, I’ll document that I discovered two “Godfather” references: Chuck’s reference to Lazzara as Don Barzini of New York made a tender landing, and Wags flagged Frankie Pentangeli’s name from “Part 2” as it came to take the market by storm. (Rian bucked the trend by quoting another Francis Ford Coppola film, “Apocalypse Now.”)
Although it depicts the use of masks at large gatherings, such as a meeting of the doorkeepers’ association, the episode sometimes refers to the pandemic in the past tense, as if the worst behind us as it was filmed. Ah, were we so young?
Corey Stoll’s subtle yet impressive performance as Prince: chuckles when he learns that Rask has declared bankruptcy, its executives are being embroiled in congress, and the Olympics have pulled out of Los Angeles. . Often, laughing at the success of your master plan is the stuff of superhumans; Prince has the wisdom to do it quietly, at least.
As an avid Wags fan, it breaks my heart to learn he’s an Eagles fan; My place in the band is best represented by the guy in “The Big Lebowski.” (But speaking as a 1992 teen, I was a big fan of opening the episode with Stone Temple Pilots’ “Plush.”)
“I’m definitely against concentration camps, but—” Let me stop you right there, Ben Kim!
Scooter Dunbar connected to work in the office of Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to continue carrying out the plot against Rask. Chuck Rhoades reads “Capitalism and Thought” by Thomas Piketty. Time, they are a change.
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/30/arts/television/billions-recap-episode-2.html ‘Billions’ Season 6, Episode 2 Summary: No one is safe