Of all the compelling themes in Billions, perhaps the most compelling is the relationship between Bobby Axelrod and Wendy Rhoades. We’ve all explored it as some point whenever we’ve talked about Billions. Damianista did a two-part treatise on the relationship between Bobby and Wendy: Part I, Part II. Bookworm saw the story of Peter Pan in them: Fly Away, Fly Away. I focused on their revelatory therapy session in “Magical Thinking” and imagined their back story as a fanfic: Rubble. Suffice it to say, the relationship has provoked a lot of thought.
Damian took part in a project that focused on a relationship very similar to Bobby and Wendy’s, many years prior to and a continent away from the world of Billions. That film, BBC’s Friends and Crocodiles, centered on a similarly charged platonic relationship between a vibrant man and the practical hard-working woman who could never leave his side, despite herself. Written and directed by Stephen Poliakoff, Friends and Crocodiles was an ambitious production exploring such lofty themes as class, creativity and navigation of British socioeconomic trends over several decades. It was also primarily focused on the possibilities within the passionately-felt work relationship between Paul Reynolds and Lizzie Thomas. Paul and Lizzie, in a way precursors of Bobby Axelrod and Wendy Rhoades, foretold the intricacies of creating and dramatizing such a relationship on screen. (For an excellent recap of the film, refer to Damianista’s TBT summary.)
I’ve alluded to the analogy of Paul and Lizzie to Bobby and Wendy fleetingly in some of my previous posts on Billions. Now, read on as I venture a bit deeper into the comparison. Continue reading “Paul Reynolds : Lizzie Thomas :: Bobby Axelrod : Wendy Rhoades”