Categories Billions Print Media Recap

Billions Superlatives: Best, Worst, Most from S3E4 – April 16, 2018

Venture Philanthropy, Yale Bathrooms, and Bad Parenting

by Miles Surrey | The Ringer | April 16, 2018

Source: Showtime

Every week, The Ringer will celebrate the passing of yet another Billions episode by honoring the installment’s best, worst, most, and least. These are your Billions Superlatives.

At the start of this week’s episode, “Hell of a Ride,” it appeared the walls were closing in on Chuck Rhoades—not only was Ira planning to testify against Chuck in the ever-mounting Ice Juice conspiracy, but Connerty had Chuck Sr. at the Southern District’s conference room, offering him immunity to testify against his son. But just before Chuck Sr. opens his mouth, bam, a “Three Days Ago” card flashes across the screen. Oh, Billions, you’re such a tease. The show’s employed flashbacks before, and we’d have to wait until the end of the hour to learn the fate of both Chucks. Chuck Sr. is definitely the MVP of this episode, but definitely not for the reasons you think. We’ll get to that and more with the “Hell of a Ride” superlatives. Let’s get after it.

Worst Inconspicuous Meeting Place

This is actually a tie between the dimly lit parking lot where Chuck meets Oliver Dake and the Manhattan cemetery where Wags, Axe, and Axe’s two security bros convene to look at Wags’ newly acquired burial plot.

Look at these places—nothing good has ever happened in a sketchy parking lot and a goddamn cemetery.

Continue reading Billions Superlatives: Best, Worst, Most from S3E4 – April 16, 2018

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Billions on Showtime, Season 3 Episode 4: Hell of a Ride – April 16, 2018

Eventuality Bookends One Hell of a Ride

by Damianista | Fan Fun with Damian Lewis | April 16, 2018

Source: Showtime

From a tragic death, to people trying to dig themselves out of their own grave, to those searching for the ultimate resting place, and to kiss of death, eventuality, literally and metaphorically, is at the heart of this episode.

Three Days Ago

Chuck drives his Porsche, which was probably bought by Axe Capital money, into a private garage only to find Dake waiting for him with bad news:  Connerty knows about Chuck Senior’s involvement in Ice Juice and Chuck needs to make sure his father will not testify against him. And when Chuck Senior does not answer his son’s calls, Chuck decides to go to his 25th year class reunion at Yale, which he RSVP’d no earlier, because it is celebrated together with his dad’s 50th year class reunion and Chuck Senior will be there to receive an award. We hear an extremely worried Wendy not only telling Chuck to convince him but also to do it for her.

Continue reading Billions on Showtime, Season 3 Episode 4: Hell of a Ride – April 16, 2018

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Billions Season 3, Episode 4 Recap: Sealed with a Kiss – April 15, 2018

“It’s Oedipus all the way down, folks.”

by Sean T. Collins | New York Times | April 15, 2018

Source: Showtime

Hell of a Ride

Chuck Rhoades Jr. and Charles Rhoades Sr. are at war. They have been since the last season of “Billions,” when son betrayed father as part of a plot by Chuck to ruin his nemesis, Bobby Axelrod. But the most powerful weapon wielded in the conflict so far hasn’t been a legal threat or a stock swindle. It’s the kiss that Charles plants square on Chuck’s mouth, hands locked on his son’s head to prevent him from pulling away.

That kiss is the climax of “Hell of a Ride,” this week’s aptly titled episode from the writer Randall Green and the director John Dahl. In a series that has made a study of the physicality of the rich and powerful, the scene is a graduate-level course.

On one level, and like so many of these characters’ other words and actions, it is very likely a reference to a work of macho pop culture: the kiss of betrayal that Michael Corleone plants on his disloyal brother Fredo in “The Godfather Part II.” (Bobby quoted the first “Godfather” film earlier in the episode when he instructed his philanthropy guru, Sean Ayles (Jack Gilpin), to “use all your powers and all your skills” in support of his latest stealthy venture.) But like the best such moments on “Billions,” the context transforms the reference into something new and unique, and in this case uniquely disturbing.

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Billions Season 3, Episode 4 Recap: I Learned It From Watching You, Dad! – April 15, 2018

Charles and Chuck Fathers-and-Sons Tour de Force

by Nicole Cliffe | Vulture | April 15, 2018

Source: Showtime

Hell of a Ride

Dust off your Harry Chapin albums, ditto Peter Gabriel’s “Solsbury Hill,” and get your dad feelings ready. This episode is the Charles and Chuck fathers-and-sons tour de force we’ve been waiting for. It’s done a LOT less hackily than these arcs often are (a well-timed flashforward helps set a good tone of ambiguity) and teaches us a whole lot about Chuck’s childhood, which … explains plenty. I was also glad to see Wendy get more work to do this week, she’d been a muted presence this season and Maggie Siff really got the opportunity to swing for the fences and put in a beautiful, moving performance.

Wendy usually spends way more time dealing with the strong negative emotions of others than she does with her own self-care, and here she must deal with the unexpected and tragic death of the man who Mad Men fans still think of as Bob Benson, but on Billions is Craig Heidecker, a cuter/nicer Elon Musk type and Wendy’s onetime lover during her separation from Chuck. His loss, in pursuit of space travel, guts Wendy, but also has a real impact on Taylor, who (sensibly) had placed a major bet against his chance of launching successfully. Obviously this cannot be the first time Taylor has realized that their work is not always aligned with the path of furthering human happiness and scientific advancement, but it definitely seems to be the first time they feel it with any acuity.

Continue reading Billions Season 3, Episode 4 Recap: I Learned It From Watching You, Dad! – April 15, 2018

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Billions Season 3, Episode 4 Recap: Venture Philanthropy & Space Colonization – April 15, 2018

“Wags knows that everybody in this world has a closet full of skeletons; all he has to do is channel his inner Randy Travis and get to digging up those bones.”

by Kyle Fowle | Entertainment Weekly | April 15, 2018

Source: Showtime

Hell of a Ride

Billions knows how to use time jumps and flashbacks better than most shows. The trick is that the show understands when to use them for maximum effect. “Golden Frog Time” might be the best example of the craft, but “Hell of a Ride” certainly ranks up there. The episode begins with Dake and Connerty offering Chuck Sr. full immunity in exchange for testimony against his son. They, or Connerty more specifically, want to know, on the record, that Chuck directed his father to use his trust money to invest in Ice Juice, therefore luring Axe into a trap before purposely sabotaging the IPO.

Then, the episode flashes back to three days earlier. It’s a wonderful setup, immediately establishing the stakes of the episode. What’s even more intriguing is that there’s truly no way to know what Chuck Sr. will do. We assume Chuck Jr. will find a way to sneak out of harm’s way, but considering how much the father hates the son in this moment, there’s no guarantee. Plus, Connerty is feeling more and more betrayed by his boss and mentor, and that means he’s seriously driven to combat his corruption.

Continue reading Billions Season 3, Episode 4 Recap: Venture Philanthropy & Space Colonization – April 15, 2018