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Billions Superlatives “Opportunity Zone” – May 25, 2020

Buff Artist Frank Grillo Steals the Show

by Miles Surrey | The Ringer | May 25, 2020

First, an apology: We didn’t do any superlatives for last week’s episode of Billions. Too many other things got in the way—like reflecting on the one-year anniversary of the Game of Thrones series finale, a show that is way worse than Billions, and celebrating the 15-year anniversary of Revenge of the Sith, the greatest movie ever made. But I understand if you’re upset enough to want to string me up in Chuck Rhoades’s BDSM dungeon or force me to chug Ice Juice. Totally normal recourse for skipping out on some sweet, sweet content. I get it.

But let’s focus on the positives. Billions is settling into another ridiculous groove, introducing Buff Artist Frank Grillo—the character’s name is Nico Tanner, but going forward he will be known here only as Buff Artist Frank Grillo—in the third episode doing some paintings for Axe on commission. I truly cannot believe this show added Frank Grillo—a gruff character actor from the Purge franchise and a couple Captain America movies whose whole vibe screams “law enforcement/mercenary” and decided to make him paint. My brain would never arrive at this conclusion, which is precisely why I’m not a staff writer for Billions (yet!).

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Billions Season 5 Episode 4 Recap: Forbes – May 25, 2020

It Takes a Monster to Destroy a Monster

by Dana Feldman | Forbes | May 25, 2020

Winning isn’t as fun if your enemy no longer wants what you have. If Axe and Mike Prince are keeping score, it isn’t clear exactly who won this latest round in “Opportunity Zone.”

Axe (Damian Lewis) learns the hard way that winning isn’t everything. When he returns to his roots in Yonkers, he fights to beat Mike Prince (Corey Stoll) and Chuck Senior (Jeffrey DeMunn) in a bid for an up-for-grabs opportunity zone in his hometown. Winning would mean he could be directly involved in a major development project that would help the locals and benefit the community financially. These are his people, or so he says.

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The Most Billions-y Things That Happened on Billions Season 5, Episode 4 – May 24, 2020

Snowflakes and Secret Alliances

by Kyle McGovern | Newsweek | May 24, 2020

Episode Four: Opportunity Zone

To celebrate the show’s compelling brand of absurdity, we’re keeping track of the most Billions-y things that happen on Billions this season. For highlights from the latest episode, brace yourselves and head below.

A Lot of “Snowflake” Talk This Week!

Well, this is a bummer: Season 5’s fourth episode features more than a few swipes at so-called “snowflakes.” The first comes early, during a sit-down between Axe and Asia Kate Dillon’s Taylor Mason, the latter of whom has been feeling off their game all season long and is currently at odds with Axe over the way he pounced at a recent oil deal. (Gonna be real: The specifics of the oil subplot are a little beyond us.) Maggie Siff’s Wendy calls Axe into her office to speak with Taylor and clear the air. He opens with a charmer: “I’m sorry, Taylor, that you’re in snowflake-mode.” That’s one!

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Billions Season 5 Episode 4 Recap: New York Times – May 24, 2020

Hometown Hero

by Sean T. Collins | New York Times | May 24, 2020

Season 5, Episode 4: ‘Opportunity Zone’

Bobby goes home to Yonkers to build support for a major development project. But did he ever really leave?

Wendy Rhoades stares at the man opposite her. And stares. And stares. And stares some more.

The man opposite her is the artist Nic Tanner, the recent recipient of a gigantic commission from Bobby Axelrod. This Renaissance Italy-style largess has him dealing with perhaps his first bout of artist’s block. Wendy has some wise words for him, but the staring comes first. Why? Because he needs fight his own way out of his artist’s block; stonewalling his demurrals and excuses is how she’s teaching him this.

According to Wendy, any obstacles between him and success as Bobby’s artist-in-residence are self-imposed. She tasks him with envisioning a better future, then getting off his duffer and doing whatever it takes to get himself there.

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Billions Season 5 Episode 4 Recap: Wall Street Journal – May 24, 2020

Bobby Axelrod Wants to Do Some Good—But Who Does He Really Want to Help?

by Paul Vigna | Wall Street Journal | May 24, 2020

It all started with a shovel.

In “Opportunity Zone,” the latest episode of “Billions” (written by Brian Koppelman, David Levien and Emily Hornsby, directed by Laurie Collyer), we get the entire Bobby Axelrod back story: a poor kid in Yonkers who turned snow shoveling into a business, turned his business into an investment, and turned his investments into an empire.

It’s a heartwarming narrative, and it’s got visuals: Bobby stands in an alley next to the Yonkers house where he grew up, shooting hoops with Savion Williams (Akili McDowell), a 14-year-old who lives there now. This tale ends up as a feature in the “Financial Journal” (if they’re referencing the WSJ, we’re insulted that they think we’d be taken in by such an obvious snow job.)

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