Categories Billions Print Media Recap

Billions on Showtime, Season 4 Episode 12: Extreme Sandbox – June 9, 2019

Peace, Love and Understanding do not live here

by Damianista | Fan Fun with Damian Lewis | June 9, 2019

May I just say I will miss Sundays? Thanks to Showtime releasing the new episodes Saturday midnight, I adjusted my weekend program this year. I have watched the show two times until 2am and took notes. Then I slept on it and sat down and wrote all day Sunday taking a lot of pleasure in putting together what I see, what I read between the lines, and my favorite part, speculating (I have hits and misses!) about what could happen next in this crazy ride! I give standing ovation to all brilliant minds behind and in front of the camera for surpassing all expectations! And special thanks go to my husband for bearing with me for the last couple of months and keeping my mother, who has been visiting for the last six weeks, entertained Sundays! ❤️

While the season is coming to an end, we still have so much to say about it. We are currently updating the dining guide which we will publish next week followed by a FUN Best of Billions Season 4 post, a locations guide and more. We hope you stay with us between seasons!

Advance Warning: This is the longest episode review I have ever written. But I feel all the feelings and have to get them out of my chest. Thanks for bearing with me. Love to you all!

First things first: I cannot imagine a better title than Extreme Sandbox for Billions Season 4 finale where Brian Koppelman and David Levien play their own extreme sandbox pulling twists and turns at every opportunity. Spanning over an intense 48-hour or so period, and going into history as the TV hour during which I yell the most at my TV screen, this is the craziest ride ever!

We know Chuck has told Wendy that he would not live without his BDSM way of life and so we find him this evening on a medieval-torture-equipment controlled by the dominatrix who visited him at home in Episode 6 Maximum Recreational Depth. While a worm may always be ready for the hook, Chuck does not feel he has not deserved his punishment yet. And, man, does he earn it or what in the next 60 minutes? 😀

Axe, on the other hand, is having a romantic evening with Rebecca. Drinking wine. Looking at Gauguin’s “Two Tahitian Women” hanging in the apartment and talking about art. So it seems the originals Margolis has promised Axe now hang on the walls and I cannot help wonder if Rebecca knows they are the originals and the reproductions are in “permanent transit” state at Margolis’ freeport 🙂

We already know, thanks to the last scene in the previous episode, Axe is cooking something where Rebecca is the potential collateral damage. And the moment Axe talks about the greats suffering more than others, you know he is coming for her. Axe kindly asks Rebecca whether she can organize a “state changer” for Wendy: Maybe a spa retreat? His chopper is at their service. Ah, what a gentleman, you may think… for a second! It is just the trickster behind those blue eyes! Isn’t Who’s “Behind Blue Eyes” an amazing song selection here?

The moment Axe says he is asking Rebecca to do this for him because he knows Wendy will benefit from her insights more than his, I yell at my TV:

“Don’t do it, girl. He is doing this just because his insights are needed elsewhere to bury your business.”

But, of course, Rebecca is clueless about the information Victor has recently found for Axe to use and destroy Taylor’s business with some significant collateral damage! Who can blame her for believing the man she loves?

Chuck comes home only to find his wife packing for her day trip with Rebecca. Chuck knows Wendy could still not digest the fact that she is losing her medical license and promises that since they have not officially ruled on it yet, he would still work behind the scenes to save her license. And the next morning he tasks Allerd with finding what makes Dr. Zhang, the chair of the medical board, lighten up! The thing is that he is late. Sean Ayles has already found out about what can lighten Dr. Zhang up in his own father’s wisdom:

“Elbow grease alone won’t solve what elbow grease and a few silver coins will.”

The institutional lubrication Axe needs to provide makes him feel like he needs the lube himself, but he will do it for Wendy. So, you may again think what a gentleman… for a second! But when you stop and think: Does the Sun God do anything for others? Remember, in season 2, Axe told Taylor the kind of giving he loves is the one that gives him back. And remember, this one will give him back. Because once Wendy’s medical license is stripped, she will still perform as a performance coach but not as a medical doctor. This means her sessions with Axe Capital employees will not be protected under “doctor – patient confidentiality” Too much of a risk for Axe to take in case the company finds itself on the wrong side of the law again. Just saying!

And, you know, I am not saying Chuck would not be able to handle the medical board, I am 100% sure Allerd would find something in Dr. Zhang’s past because everyone has something in their past. It is just that Chuck does not have the time to deal with Wendy’s problem today because he has hiw own headache in the form of Jock Jeffcoat visiting him.

Since Chuck had warned Jeffcoat about the shit train coming his way, Jeffcoat is now returning the kindness: They have a case that will ultimately take Chuck down and so the AG is here to give him a chance to walk away. And as Jeffcoat describes how the case will make “loud as a cow elk trying to squeeze out breached twins” if he does not leave his office now, Chuck responds with his maternal grandfather’s wisdom and at the AG’s face… in Italian. Like Jeffcoat, I do not know what Chuck says exactly but again like Jeffcoat I get the general idea and besides, I know the last word Chuck uses “Vaffanculo” means “Fuck you.”

But still Chuck moves the shit train to get his father, who Jeffcoat has almost kidnapped, back! The Rhoadeses know Jeffcoat is coming for them. What we do not know at this moment is how prepared they are! 😀

As Rebecca leaves the apartment for her day adventure with Wendy, I feel heartbroken seeing her smile in the elevator. Too bad she does not know Axe as we know him.

We have four years of experience with Axe and know that loyalty is EVERYTHING to him. Besides, we all caught the side look he gave to Rebecca in Episode 11 Lamster when she told him about her new partnership with Taylor, didn’t we?

I tweeted about my concerns that night!

And, lo and behold, Axe is on the phone with Sanford Bensinger who we find out likes a good breakfast!

Clueless about what is coming their way, Taylor is talking to their employees about their own mistakes. In contrast to Axe who they never heard say “I was wrong” or “I am sorry” Taylor owns their mistakes and they are sorry. But now they are in a business partnership with Rebecca that should end Axe’s animosity against Taylor Mason Capital. And so they will now go back to their mathematical model and put the Q back in the “Quantitative.”

Taylor is not a dreamer. They certainly know Axe still hates them. But having diagnosed Axe’s structural weakness earlier, his commitment to Rebecca, Taylor assumes Axe will not take any action to hurt his girl friend. WRONG!

Bryan, on the other hand, is a dreamer. He is on his own Kamikaze mission and trying to convince Kate to give him the privileged parts of the tapes. While Kate sees the Jack Torrance kind of look in Bryan’s eyes, the US denies seeing creepy twins riding Big Wheels! As Kate insists that Bryan not hearing the privileged parts of the tape is good for EVERYONE, Bryan is not listening. But when he knows Kate will not go along, Bryan gives a call to Jeffcoat for help and arranges warrants for a search in Chuck Senior’s as well as Secretary Krakow’s personal safes. Kate will personally handle the searches.

After his breakfast with Bensinger, which we don’t see, Axe visits Chuck at home to talk about, well, Silence of The Lambs 😀

“Look I got Taylor in the well, it has applied lotion from the basket. All that’s left is skinning.

So is this Axe and Taylor? Creepy. VERY creepy.

While Chuck is willing to do the skinning for Axe, he needs Axe’s help because it is him who knows Taylor and how they will move when desperate. So it is Axe who should tempt them — maybe with some former employee that Axe has let go in the past approaching Taylor with an opportunity too good to pass — and Chuck will take care of the rest.

We all know the former employee who fits the description, don’t we? 😀

Rebecca and Wendy experience Extreme Sandbox — filed under things that I never knew existed until Billions — where they drive construction equipment top literally move dirt and crash cars?!?!  I have to say this is the most ridiculous thing I have ever seen — sorry, Rebecca! – but if it is working for Wendy’s healing then I am all for it! And later when they sit down for a few beers, Rebecca asks Wendy to read her:

“Most people let their childhood shit run them. You use yours to propel you.”

Read the rest of the article at Fan Fun with Damian Lewis