Improbably, a series seemingly about rich white guys measuring their dicks is an essential show of our era. (Okay, maybe not that improbable)
by Todd VanDerWerff | Vox |June 12, 2018
If you’ve been following the world of TV Twitter this spring, you probably know that a certain subset of this nation’s great, professionally paid TV viewers has gone a little goofy for Showtime’s Billions. Observe!
Continue reading How Showtime’s Billions Went From Dull to Dazzling – June 12, 2018
“As a Saga of Glittering Financial Warfare, Billions is Seemingly Lab-Engineered to Appeal to the Very People it Claims to be About”
by Helen Rosner | The New Yorker | June 11, 2018
For nearly three seasons, the Showtime drama “Billions” has been structured as a classic cat-and-mouse tale, a story of attack and defense between the impossibly powerful U.S. Attorney Chuck Rhoades (Paul Giamatti) and his nemesis, the impossibly powerful hedge-fund billionaire Bobby “Axe” Axelrod (Damian Lewis). Chuck pursues an exhaustive federal case against Axelrod and his fund, Axe Capital, driven less by any direct evidence of wrongdoing than by a dogged jealousy—Chuck’s wife, Wendy (played, with beautifully deadpan intelligence, by Maggie Siff), is an employee of Axe Capital and one of Axelrod’s most intimate confidantes. There is, of course, plenty of wrongdoing for Chuck to uncover (“Billions” takes as axiomatic Honoré de Balzac’s observation that behind every great fortune is a great crime), and Axelrod uses his considerable financial resources twisting the world in knots to avoid being grazed by the sword of the righteous. On Chuck’s side, the game involves shady evidence-gathering tactics, flagrant witness manipulation, and copious back-room dealmaking. On Axe’s side, bottomless pockets are used to reward friends, eliminate problems, and settle old scores. Flying private to hang out with Metallica? You got it. Planting a camera in a government employee’s bedroom in order to blackmail her with a sex tape so that she’ll hand over inside information on Chuck’s case? Consider it done. (Spoilers abound from here on in. If you haven’t started watching the show yet but plan to start: yes, the first scene of the first episode is off-puttingly corny. It gets a whole lot better from there.)
Continue reading How Billions Became One of TV’s Sharpest Critiques of Power – June 11, 2018
The Dog-Eat-Purebred-Dog World of Billions
by Brian Lowry | CNN | June 10, 2018
In the dog-eat-purebred-dog world of “Billions,” the fastest way to flip the script is to engineer a shift in existing alliances. The producers did precisely that in the niftily choreographed third-season finale, setting the stage for a pair of juicy plot lines in the season ahead.
Granted, the surprises couldn’t quite match the operatic highs of last season’s finishing twist, which saw U.S. Attorney Chuck Rhoades (Paul Giamatti) sell out various people around him — including his own father — in his headlong pursuit of bringing down hedge-fund wizard Bobby “Axe” Axelrod (Damian Lewis).
Continue reading Billions Wraps Season with High-Stakes Double Crosses – June 10, 2018
MVP, LVP, ROTY, CPOY, and Finale MVP, LVP
by Alec Hare | The Breakshot | June 10, 2018
Wow. What a season! In Billions Season 3, the plot went left when we thought it would go straight and it went up when we thought it was going to go down. The showrunners pivoting the plot at every turn made this season unpredictable and fun. The season was basically two different seasons as the show resets in the middle. Not to mention in Season 4 we will be getting the return of the big three Chuck, Wendy, and Axe. Enough of that, it’s time to hand out Billions Season 3 Awards!!
Continue reading Billions Season 3 Awards – June 10, 2018
by Nicole Cliffe | Vulture | June 10, 2018
I’ll be honest: This was a real mixed bag for me! It’s a good episode (they’re all good episodes!) but as big Billions reveals go, “Elmsley Count” lacked the enjoyable punch of the Ice Juice double cross, or Donnie’s dying play, or even Axe and Chuck teaming up to save Wendy from insider trading charges. I kept waiting for a little something more to drop, and was … mildly disappointed? … when nothing did.
Even though I didn’t get the little something I particularly wanted, there were still lots of fun and shiny balls in the air, and it’s a mark of the show’s quality that I expected a few more of them to drop on someone’s foot when we least expected it. There’s been a firewall between The Axe Capital Situation and The Southern District Situation these last few episodes, in that their respective problems are not elaborately interconnected for once, and it can feel a little creaky moving from one to the other with only Wendy as a commonality.
Continue reading Billions Season 3, Episode 12 Finale Recap: Vulture – June 10, 2018