Categories Billions Print Media Recap

What to Know About Billions’ Cryptocurrency Drama If You Know Nothing About Cryptocurrency – May 22, 2020

The Cryptocurrency Bitcoin Blockchain Explainer

by Sarene Leeds | Vulture | May 17, 2020

If you’re a fan of the Showtime drama Billions but having a tough time following the current season’s cryptocurrency story lines, you’re not alone. Not only do the actors have trouble keeping up with the series’ twists and turns, even those who work in the financial sector don’t necessarily understand crypto mining, a subject that pops up several times in season five. “Half the people in finance couldn’t explain what mining is to you,” says New York Times best-selling author Ben Mezrich, who joined the Billions writers’ room this season as a consulting producer. “A large percentage of them have no idea, because it’s complex.”

As the writer of Bitcoin Billionaires and The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook: A Tale of Sex, Money, Genius and Betrayal — the latter of which was adapted into the movie The Social Network — Mezrich is a natural fit for the Billions team. His expert knowledge of cryptocurrency has provided the series with an opportunity to further explore this once-dark, underground area of finance. He also wrote this season’s third episode, which has Gordie Axelrod (Jack Gore), son of billionaire Bobby “Axe” Axelrod (Damian Lewis), running his own crypto-mining operation.

From the safety of his home in Quechee, Vermont, where he’s riding out the COVID-19 pandemic, Mezrich was kind enough to guide Vulture through the intricacies of these esoteric plotlines. The result is this useful explainer for those of us who love Billions, but are still lost when characters like Axe and Chuck Rhoades (Paul Giamatti) start talking Bitcoin and blockchain.

Continue reading What to Know About Billions’ Cryptocurrency Drama If You Know Nothing About Cryptocurrency – May 22, 2020

Categories Billions Recap

From the Trader’s Desk: “Beg, Bribe, Bully” Billions S5 Ep3 – May 22, 2020

Is Axe the Modern-Day Gordon Gekko?

by Lady Trader | Fan Fun with Damian Lewis | May 22, 2020

Kings will be crowned, and the word goes around
From father to son, to son
“Father to Son” – Queen

Welcome back to the Trader’s Desk. This week Billions seems to have Daddy issues! I’ll get into that, some observations, and then my thoughts on Axe and his audition for the role of modern day Gorden Gekko!

I think it was fitting that this episode opened with the song “Father and Son” (and a big thank you to Damianista and Gingersnap for educating me on the singer and the song, as I had never heard of it!). We all know that Axe and Chuck have some major Daddy issues, and those were on display this week, along with Axe setting some up for his son Gordie. Also, did anyone else notice the plethora of The Godfather references? Now that’s a movie about Daddy issues! And let’s not even start about the state of Wags’ kids because he was an absent father. This episode should have been shown on Father’s Day!

Continue reading From the Trader’s Desk: “Beg, Bribe, Bully” Billions S5 Ep3 – May 22, 2020

Categories Billions Poll Recap

The Unbeatable, Unstoppable, Unparalleled MVPs from Billions Season 5 Episode 3 – May 20, 2020

Billions MVP Awards for Season 5, Episode 3, “Beg, Bribe, Bully”

by Gingersnap | Fan Fun with Damian Lewis | May 20, 2020

We continue to award our Most Valuable Players for Billions season five in a compilation post called the ‘Billions MVP Fanbook,’ which commemorates all those in honor of achievement for the utmost brazen, uber shameless, ultrascheming, unmatched bad asses to date – from sports references, music and tasty food to pop culture remarks, shocking twists and ultimate paybacks. In case you missed it, here are the MVPs for episode one and episode two.

Let us continue with that tradition as we award our Most Valuable Players (MVPs) this week. Here are the Billions MVP awards for Season 5, Episode 3, “Beg, Bribe, Bully.”

Continue reading The Unbeatable, Unstoppable, Unparalleled MVPs from Billions Season 5 Episode 3 – May 20, 2020

Categories Billions Poll Print Media Recap

The Most Billions-y Things That Happened on Billions Season 5, Episode 3 – May 17, 2020

Everything’s Transactional On Billions. Even Family.

by Kyle McGovern | Newsweek | May 17, 2020

Showtime’s Billions takes place in a reality all its own. Technically that’s true of pretty much every work of fiction, but it feels especially so for the show created by Brian Koppelman, David Levien and Andrew Ross Sorkin.

The whole series is a high-stakes pissing contest that’s dressed up like a prestige TV drama set in the world of New York finance. Really, though, Billions takes place in a different, even more heightened world—one where stock bros and members of the federal law enforcement are hyper-articulate and as fluent in sports and film references as they are in obscene insults.

Imagine a world where splashy cameos, extravagant dining and skullduggery are par for the course. Think of a place where people are constantly seduced by power, prone to operatic levels of pettiness and vulnerable to what the NBA’s Pat Riley has called “the Disease of More,” to throw in a Billions-esque shoutout. Picture a reality where Paul Giamatti is not only the Attorney General of New York, but also an out (and somewhat proud) member of the BDSM community. Consider the existence of a realm where John Malkovich is a Russian billionaire and speaks in the same thicker-than-whiteout-conditions accent that he had as Teddy KGB in the 1998 film Rounders—not a coincidence, since Koppelman and Levien wrote Rounders. Try to believe that Damian Lewis could somehow be from Yonkers. Once you’ve done all that, then you’ll have an idea of what goes on in the world of Billions.

And 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.

Continue reading The Most Billions-y Things That Happened on Billions Season 5, Episode 3 – May 17, 2020

Categories Billions Print Media Recap

Billions Season 5 Episode 3 Recap: New York Times – May 17, 2020

Subjugate and Conquer

by Sean T. Collins | New York Times | May 17, 2020

Season 5, Episode 3: ‘Beg, Bribe, Bully’

“Billions” is a show that seems to appreciate pro wrestling, as seen in the fandom of its dudebro character Mafee and the recent cameo by Becky Lynch. So I hope it’s not too indulgent to quote one of the great heel wrestlers, Ted DiBiase, better known as the Million Dollar Man, as a kind of epigraph for this episode: “Everybody’s got a price.”

I know, I know: That’s kind of the point of the whole show, right? It’s a drama about the corrupting influence of money and power. But it felt more poignant in this week’s episode than it has in quite some time, perhaps because the institutions being assailed by the show’s money-talks characters — family, art, education, the environment — feel sacrosanct.

Not in Bobby Axelrod’s world, though, that’s for sure. Axe spends the episode questing after three things. First, he wants to become a bank. He’s informed by the government officials Todd Krakow and Hard Bob (played by the actors Danny Strong and Chelcie Ross in deliciously sleazy cameos) that there is no way for him to get past the regulatory agencies that want to keep men with criminal histories like his away from banking; his mistake was committing his misdeeds before becoming a bank, while the megabanks that caused the 2008 crash and got away largely scot-free did it the other way around.

Continue reading Billions Season 5 Episode 3 Recap: New York Times – May 17, 2020