Pick of the Day: Billions, Sky Atlantic, 9pm
by David Sexton | Evening Standard | May 10, 2018
An extraordinary episode of the glossy financial drama, which was recently renewed for a fourth season.
Showrunners Brian Koppelman and David Levien contribute a storyline that swirls around the two main protagonists, Axe (Damian Lewis) and Chuck (Paul Giamatti), making it clear that whatever moral distinction there used to be between the rogue trader and the attorney general, they are both now morally compromised.
Last week’s show ended with Axe and Chuck in conference with Wendy (Maggie Siff) trying to work out a plan to avoid them all being sent to jail. This week, much to the men’s surprise, Wendy proposes a dubious idea which involves the framing of the almost blameless oncologist Dr Ari Gilbert (Seth Barrish), and persuading her colleague Mafee (Dan Soder) to lie (a talk which requires her to wield her sexuality). In the end, Axe takes a relaxing bath, but the dynamics have changed, with Wendy’s flexible morality promoting her to the role of a key player.
Billions began in the Obama years as a fight between right and wrong. As the drama evolves to mirror the Trump era, those distinctions have become very blurry.
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