From The Trader’s Desk: Where Does Your Loyalty Lie? Recapping S3 Ep12 “Elmsley Count”

Is this it? Can this really be the last “From the Trader’s Desk” for this season? Sadly, the answer is yes. I have enjoyed writing about Billions from the “Wall Street” side of things, and hope you’ve enjoyed my posts as well. I also hope I helped with the “fin-speak” and in understanding the world of finance. On a personal note: I didn’t know if I would be able to contribute to FanFun when Billions started in March, after being diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma last summer. But, not only did I contribute almost every week, I feel I have done some of my best writing. Thank you Damianista, and everyone who reads our blog for helping me get back to normal!

Instead of a basic recap, I’ll look at the two relationships that were the backbone (from the financial side anyway) of this episode: Axe-Taylor and Taylor-Wendy. I know there was a flurry of “fin-speak” at the Spartan-Ives Capital Introduction Event at CitiField (my second home on many Saturdays!), but I won’t go into details about it. I don’t think they were relevant to the overall episode (as opposed to other times when it was the meat of the story). I have updated the Billions:Glossary with all the definitions, and as always, if there is something you’d like me to explain or give examples of, please let me know.

I need to get this off my chest before I begin: I know I am in the minority (I might even be the only one) who did not like the final scene of this episode. I have not been shy of my dislike of Wendy and my complete contempt for Chuck; to see Axe at that table, not because he has to work with them (as he did in “Not You, Mr. Dake), but because he wants to, drives me nuts! I have come to accept (not understand, mind you) Axe and his relationship with Wendy. Being bezzie mates with Chuck? No, please lord, just no.

Standing inside myself, I’m losing control
You made me believe in the stories you told
Waiting impatiently, what else can I do?
I handed my future over to you, to you
Over to you – Black Sabbath

Those lyrics could be a fit for so many of the characters this season in Billions. Trust (or lack thereof) was a theme that ran through the story-lines for most of the players on the Billions field. The idea of loyalty was also at the heart of many of the relationships as well.

What is loyalty? Do you earn it or do you demand it? Axe certainly demands it from everyone in his orbit; but has he earned it? And if you don’t earn the loyalty of those around you, is it so surprising that you can lose it so quickly? If you don’t give loyalty, why should you expect it in return?

Axe-Taylor

For Brutus, as you know, was Caesar’s angel
Judge, O you gods, how dearly Caesar loved him!
This was the most unkindest cut of all;
For when the noble Caesar saw him stab,
Ingratitude, more strong than traitors’ arms,
Quite vanquished him: then burst his mighty heart
Julius Caesar Act 3, scene 2

I think we all saw it coming (and it was confirmed at the end of “Kompenso”) – Taylor breaking away to open their own shop. I’m not mad that this is the route Taylor took. Has Taylor learned all they could from Axe? Hell no! But there was not enough oxygen in the office of Axe Capital to sustain both of them for much longer. So, I agree with Taylor’s play; I just don’t agree in how they did it. I will admit though, it was a brilliant play and was in reaction to how they have been treated at Axe Capital.

Axe has made it his business to cut Taylor at every opportunity since his return to Axe Capital. I think the last straw was using Taylor’s relationship with Oscar. That taught Taylor that nothing is sacred in this business if you want to get ahead. Taylor is a brilliantly quick learner, and all that Axe has taught them has gotten us to this point.

Taylor is going to be late for the cap raise because they are meeting with Andolov, pitching Mase Cap. Why would Taylor want to deal with Andolov now, when in the past they have said he is “an international criminal”? Because not only does Taylor need that money to start their firm with a bang, but it will be a dagger in the heart to Axe Capital, which we know, is Axe. Is this payback for Oscar? Possibly, but it’s also a way for Taylor to show they can run with the big dogs. Morality takes a holiday when it’s time to seed your fund.

Axe needs Taylor at the cap raise: “the pitch doesn’t work without Taylor”. He doesn’t know how right he is! Taylor gets to the meeting just in time and right before the pitch begins, Wendy reminds the team: “they are not buying your strategies, they are buying you”. But who exactly: Taylor or Axe?

Axe won’t bore the room with the details of why they should invest in Axe Capital, he’ll show them: introducing “the single most effective manager of money” Axe has ever come across, Taylor Mason. Taylor is “the future” of Axe Capital. It’s hard to decide if Axe really means this, or if it’s just an act for the investors in the room. I think it’s an act. If Axe truly believed that, why not show that to Taylor? Axe uses people to advance his own agenda, and that’s fine, it’s who he is. However, he never thinks someone could do the same to him. Especially someone he groomed himself.

Taylor crushes the presentation, focusing on how they do “grinding, focused work; fully transparent work”. The people in the room know that is all Taylor, as I doubt anyone would describe Axe’s work that way.

The next day, Axe and Wags realize they got played, and played good. Wags can’t get most of the $6B to commit, and with Taylor’s office empty (and Mafee not at his station), they know Axe Capital now has a new rival.

Axe wants to stop Taylor, but doing it legally will take too long. He may have a case if Taylor or Mafee have a non-compete clause in their contracts, but I don’t believe Axe would win if he claimed theft of intellectual property (IP), as he had told Taylor to squash the quant project. The algo that is going to fuel Mase Cap is all Taylor’s. Axe will file anyway. Just as Axe was distracted while going through his legal issues, he wants Taylor to feel what it’s like to be “split-focused”. Somehow, I don’t think Taylor gets as distracted as Axe does. Axe is emotional, where Taylor is always focused and logical. It was why they were a good team, they balanced each other.

When the dust settles, Mase Cap is getting $3.5B, Axe Cap $500M, and $2B is going to be sitting this one out. It’s a huge blow to Axe Capital, but Axe did tee Taylor up for the crowd, so why wouldn’t they go with Taylor?

Ben Kim, being the loyal soldier, reveals how Taylor tried to recruit him to Axe, Wendy and Wags. In the process, Ben Kim blurts out what the Street will be thinking, and one of Axe’s biggest fears: “you fell for it”. The knowledge that he was played hurts Axe way more than losing the money. Axe cares a lot more about his reputation as being “Bobby Fucking Axelrod” than almost anything else. Ben Kim was loyal, but what does that get him from Axe? Nothing; Axe demands that unconditional allegiance, but rarely gives it in return.

Wendy suggests to Axe that they look inward to “see what you, what we, may have done to cause this”. This is falling on deaf ears as Axe would then have to take responsibility for his actions and behavior towards Taylor, and he has never been good at that. It is interesting to hear Wendy voice that she may have played a role in this debacle.

Axe needs to look Taylor “in the eye” so he ventures over to Taylor Mason Capital’s new office. It’s very opposite from Axe Cap – no more feeling like you’re on a glass version of the Starship Enterprise Bridge; Taylor’s office feel a lot more funky, with exposed brick, and views of both the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges. As he gets off the elevator, the first thing Axe sees is the Taylor Mason Capital sign, and rolls his eyes.

Axe encounters Mase Cap’s only employee (that we know of) Mafee. Mafee hems and haws, but what can he say? He was a loyal soldier to Axe, but I believe taking the fall for Wendy and the damage his reputation took by being fined by the SEC did not sit well with him. Plus, Mafee has always been close wtih Taylor and a new start was more important to him than the partnership stake. After Axe tells Mafee he plans on burying him, he tells him “go get your new master”. Axe sees himself as the Master at Axe Cap and everyone else is beneath him. Is it any wonder there was a “palace coup”?

In S1 & S2 the electric showdown was between Axe and Chuck. We know we’re not getting that this finale, but we get one just as good: Grasshopper vs. Master Po!

The dialogue is so damn good in this scene! The back and forth volley between Axe and Taylor is something out of a Sampras/Agassi match.

Taylor needed to make this move. They believed Axe was going to “send them off to slaughter”. How could Taylor not believe that? All the “undercutting, manipulation” and “public and private humiliation” and broken promises, lead Taylor to this outcome. They are doing this for them, not against Axe. They did what they did to survive and win. (Didn’t Axe tell Wendy not to feel guilty when making a move that puts you in charge? I guess some things are good for the goose….). Surely Axe of all people would understand?

Uh, no. Axe tells Taylor he was not trying to get rid of them or work against them. Axe trusted Taylor in a way “that I almost never trust anyone”. “Now you’ve taken from me.” I seem to recall Axe telling Wendy there were things that Taylor could not be given, that they would have to “take” them; well, here ya go. Axe feels betrayed, and has a right to; but then what would you call what he did to Taylor in regards to Oscar?

Axe realizes Taylor is a formidable foe, but will never admit it. That Taylor is moving quicker than he did is a big part of his anger. Axe questions if Taylor can survive and thrive in the rarified air that is at the top of the hedge fund world.

“Young lungs, so yeah, we’ll see.”

Taylor knows Axe is now a dangerous enemy.

“Do what you must and I’ll defend as I have to.”

Taylor goes toe to toe with their former mentor and does not flinch! Wow! That was an amazing, tense scene! Bravo to both Damian Lewis and Asia Kate Dillon!

Taylor needed to break away from the toxicity that is Axe Capital. Axe would have never let Taylor rise more than he allowed them to at his firm. That being said, I wish Taylor had done it a bit more above board, but then it wouldn’t have been as juicy!

I am sad to see my two favorite characters now become mortal enemies, but it will certainly make for an interesting S4.

Taylor-Wendy

Taylor and Wendy seem to have become close – it was Wendy Taylor turned to when the relationship with Oscar ended. So naturally Taylor thinks they will be able to recruit Wendy to Mase Cap. In a “Hall-like” move, Taylor ambushes Wendy in the parking garage.

Taylor wants Wendy at their firm. Taylor wants to have a firm where “we can be our best”. To S1 and even S2 Wendy, that might be a very appealing offer; but S3 Wendy has changed. Wendy is offended that Taylor would even ask. I don’t like Wendy, but she is very loyal to Axe, maybe to a fault. Wendy is no longer the “moral compass” she used to be. She had to get her hands dirty, and I think it has really affected her. Wendy feels used by Taylor, and is pissed. “You preyed on me and my empathy for you” and “programmed me to get what you wanted from Axe (kind of sounds similar to what Wendy did to Mafee?). In the second best scene of the show (in my opinion anyway) Taylor gives it to Wendy like no one has! Taylor is offering Wendy a fresh start; a reset from her “slew of fuck ups”. Wendy let things “devolve at Axe Capital” and didn’t see Axe pushing Taylor out, and couldn’t stop “Axe from succumbing to his own worst nature”. I do think Wendy tried, but gave in when she needed that “worst nature” to save her ass.

Since Wendy really can’t disagree (let’s face it, Taylor ain’t lying!!), she deflects and puts the focus back on Taylor. Taylor is young, and doesn’t realize this business “is not just about the numbers or the decimal points; the thing that makes it matter is lasting relationships, true loyalty, real trust”. That nice little speech may have worked on Taylor at one point, but Taylor has had a front row seat at the workings of Axe and Wendy and is now Taylor 2.0.

“No, I’m pretty sure there’s only money, and it can buy all those things, or at least the same result. That’s what you and Axe taught me.”

No sadder words were truer. Wendy knows they played a part in building Taylor 2.0, but will fight by Axe’s side against Taylor. I do think all those things Taylor voiced have been in Wendy’s head, and we may see the consequences in S4!

I know I did not go into Axe and Andolov, but I will say this: I never believed Axe would give a go-ahead to have Taylor whacked. Axe may not always be on the up-and-up, but he’s not a truly bad person like Andolov is. Axe relishes in revenge: “I want them alive to experience all that I am going to do to them. I’m going to destroy them in ways that will make them wish they got what you offered.” That is Axe in a nutshell! Axe will have to tread lightly though; by going after Taylor he will be going after Andolov’s money as well.

Loyalties can shift when facts on the ground change. I’ve been Team Axe since before the first episode of Billions ever aired. However, the Axe of S3 has me questioning: could I become Team Taylor? That will be answered in S4 as well!

9 thoughts on “From The Trader’s Desk: Where Does Your Loyalty Lie? Recapping S3 Ep12 “Elmsley Count””

  1. I loved your entry Lady Trader, as usual. You are probably not the only one who didn’t like the final scene. I did not dislike it as much as I found it unbelievable. After all the things Chuck said about Axe (and vice versa but I think Axe wasn’t quite as nasty as Chuck), to welcome him into his home with that conversation at the door just didn’t fit. It was quite a warm, fuzzy conclusion to the season and I am glad it didn’t end like S1 and S2 with Axe getting the short end of the stick. After S1 we knew Axe Cap had to be rebuilt. After S2 we knew Axe had a huge legal problem ahead. This time, there wasn’t a real clue as to what comes next. However, whatever it is, I am quite sure I remain Team Axe. Taylor can vanish, so can Wendy, although I doubt that will happen. The Ginger One was, and will continue to be, the reason I tune in on Sunday nights.

    1. Thank you so much Connie!

      I’m glad to know I’m not alone in disliking that final scene. I also thought that those “boys” let bygones be bygones a bit too quick, but I know the writers are sending us on their journey, so I’ll play along. I doubt this coziness lasts. Relationship status on Billions is a permanent “it’s complicated”!

      I agree with you on Wendy (as I do most weeks!), but I like Taylor. Because of the work I do, I appreciate their ability to see things (trades, trends, etc.) that others do not. I don’t like how Axe treated, but I’m Team Axe as well – there is just too much that I relate to with that character to not be!

  2. So no offense to you or your profession, but people like Axe, after witnessing the Bush era and then the 2008 crash, is why I ended up going from a free market advocate in my youth to a social capitalist, and why while I love the guy personally I hate what he allows his wealth to let him become (and why I always liked him and Chuck equally in the series personally, while leaning more to Chuck philosophically about service to society and social justice). It’s not about how much money a lot of the super rich actually obtain that I disagree with, it’s about what they do with it afterwards and how much they let it shape their identity. The reckless arrogance, the enormous egoism, and a near complete disregard for anyone else, and the fact that they have the resources to do so much more damage as a result rather than thinking about any sense of responsibility that comes with their wealth usually. I mean, go back to Axe and Lara’s horror at only having 300 million left or Panne at 40 and the lengths they were willing to go to escape that. Or Axe being such a tight wad when it came to giving out comp and how personally offended he felt about actually paying for things he doesn’t want to do. It’s also why I actually like Axe’s relationship with Wendy, going all the way back to 9/11, because as Lara said Axe at least on some level understands how broken he is and I recognize how he came to the conclusion that he needed someone like Wendy to be that little voice of restraint his mother thought he lacked. Quite frankly, if he didn’t have her I seriously expect Axe would have ended up in prison by now.

    At the same time, while all of Taylor’s criticisms were on point I feel very mixed about the tactics they resorted to and whether Taylor is really self-reflecting and learning from Axe’s mistakes even as they make a note of all of them. My main hope and worry as the battle between Taylor and Axe spirals forward is that Taylor will slowly realize this and pullback before it’s too late. And in keeping with the young vs old theme I hope Taylor ends up contracting the former New Halls against Axe now that old Hall is back. I also can’t shake the feeling that Bryan will likely insert himself into this dispute given he still has that sketch of Hall and he vowed to continue his pursuit over ICEJ, which might see the aborted alliance between Bryan and Taylor back in Seaon 2 begin anew. Also personally hope Chuck uses his favor for backing Sweeny as Governor to become AG of New York State, with Epstein leaving the post to sign on with Jock.

    1. Thank for reading KrimzonStriker. I’m always glad to read comments from someone that speaks their mind!

      I’m not sure what the “Bush era” even means, or what it has to do with free market capitalism. The markets (and the economy) go through cycles that have the usual ups and downs. Each time it may be a different reason for these waves, but they are not uncommon or unexpected. The US economy has had many recessions (and a few depressions) during several Administrations. As for the 2008 crash, I believe that had a lot more to do with people taking extreme risks (on both the Wall Street and Main Street sides), and not thinking they would ever have to pay the band for the dance, than who was in the White House at the time.

      I agree that Axe has let his wealth to a certain extent change him, and maybe even forget his working-class roots. But I will always love that even though he can afford an Armani suit, he chooses to wear a Black Sabbath t-shirt to the office. That is the Axe I love. I disagree with your view regarding Chuck. He may use all the right words in being a “service to society” and believing in “social justice”, but his actions counter all of that. Actions speak louder than words, and Chuck’s actions counter most things he says. Chuck does things for his own advancement and benefit (or to beat someone who has personally aggrieved him), not for the benefit of society or because it’s the “right thing to do”.

      I also don’t think that everyone in the world of high finance have “reckless arrogance, the enormous egoism, and a near complete disregard for anyone else, and the fact that they have the resources to do so much more damage as a result rather than thinking about any sense of responsibility that comes with their wealth usually”. We can say this about some movie stars, athletes, and people in the music industry; you go down a slippery slope when you paint members of a whole group with a very broad brush. I’ve been in this business since 1988, and have worked with and for many people who have let money go to their heads, and many who were generous, grounded and down to earth; so much so that you would never know they made millions of dollars or were Ivy League graduates. I have friendships of over 20 years with genuine people I have met working on Wall Street, and I have also met people I wouldn’t spit on if they were on fire! I think if a person is a jerk, they’re a jerk; sometimes having money just highlights it or makes people think they have a license to act like asses. News flash: they don’t. All professions have great and awful people.

      I have gone on in several places how I feel about the Wendy-Axe relationship. Axe is good at what he does because of his natural abilities (he was winning at Yonkers Raceway, way before he ever met Wendy). Axe is not in prison now because of Wendy’s manipulation of Mafee – not because she restrained Axe, because she joined him in doing whatever it takes to stay out of jail.

      I agree with the how Taylor broke away from Axe Capital. I was fun to watch, and a brilliant move, but I’m a Taylor fan, and hate seeing them go down this road. Taylor has changed since we first met them, and not necessarily for the better. But, just as children learn behavior from their parents, Taylor learned the art of manipulation from two masters: Axe and Wendy.

      I could totally see Chuck becoming NY AG by way of Sweeny! That is a brilliant plot twist! And I never underestimate Bryan. I don’t agree with his Pollyanna view of the world, but he is a smart cookie, and does have a fire in him. A Taylor-Bryan alliance? I’d love to see how that plays out!

      1. Oh, I’m not necessarily linking 2008 and the Bush Era together beyond the lack of oversight and at some points outright encouragement of the former from the latter during that time period, in allowing people to over leverage. I can understand recessions and bad turns in the business market like the dot-com bubble for example, but 2008 just really peeved me off looking over government policy and financial institution practices prior to their bankruptcies at the time, and how much the setup was built almost purely on speculation rather than any substantive basis on the fundamentals versus adjusting expectations of the development of a new sector of the economy like with dot-com.

        I won’t pretend Chuck is a saint or didn’t cause a lot of collateral damage, but his overall goals and targets of his ire were generally ones that I agree on principal were worth taking down. Especially when it came to Jock. And it’s not that I don’t like Axe personally, I love the guy (even as I hate Jock). I just don’t like that he keeps trying to equate freedom with the license to do whatever he wants, and because he has billions he’s able to act like he can. And I think there were pretty big indications Axe was going down his self-destructive road pretty early on in his career, because you have to remember he was being fired from his job before 9/11 because of his reckless methods. I love and give full credit to his natural abilities but it was evident the flaws that nearly landed him in jail now were also present within him from the very beginning too, yet for 15 years while building Axe Cap he never got caught up in another major snafu again until the start of Billions, rehabbing his public image to become New York’s golden boy during that time period. Because of that I don’t think it’s a stretch when he does credit a big part of his success to Wendy.

        If I’m coming off as trying to paint people with a broad brush I apologize, I’ll qualify my critiques of the superrich to characters specifically like Axe who actually do let their fortunes go to their heads, and that also includes people like Charles Rhoades Senior just to clarify further. But what separates them from the asses in a lot of other social stratas, outside of probably politics which I in turn have had both the privilege and detriment of seeing first hand from my own experience, is my last line about how much more damage they’re able to do when they want to. I mean, I have philosophical questions on a macro-economic level on the benefits of so much of the economies wealth being concentrated within such a small segment of the population, but that’s not any type of objection against people with wealth personally.

        And that was with the current situation, I was speaking more of the past and how if Axe had just listened to Wendy from before any of this started (which he almost did) they wouldn’t have been in this mess in the first place, and up to what was going on with Taylor. Wendy herself would not have been in the poor position she was in if it wasn’t for Axe and Chuck getting her caught up in it in the first place, and making her actions seem illegal. I mean she WAS actually innocent of the crime Bryan tried to accuse her of. And I like to think had she not had to dig herself out of Axe and Chuck’s shenanigans she probably would have caught on and interceded about Taylor much earlier and avoided this whole thing between them and Axe, but she was stuck in her own head after everything that went down, so it just came too late unfortunately.

        Anyway, can’t wait for Season 4, I’m both looking forward and dreading these potential clashes as while one conflict I was worried would end in mutual annihilation between Chuck and Axe has come to an end, I now worry about the consequences for everyone on both sides, and whether they’ll coming out of the struggle intact now that Bryan and Taylor are decidedly on the other side (except Jock, screw Jock). It reminds me of the queasy feeling I had when Chuck fired Bryan after coming off my elation the episode before after the case was dismissed. Whoever succeeds I do end up feeling for the losing party afterwards. Won’t stop my anticipation though, and thanks again for all your insights, really adds to my enjoyability with the series and I look forward to hopefully even more when Season 4 rolls around.

        1. I agree with a lot of your analysis! And even on the things we disagree on, we are having a civil exchange of ideas and opinons! I love it. Thank you!

          And, thank you for the kind words. I really enjoy writing from a different point of view (one that not many have) about this show and if it helps even one person understand the show, characters or situations a bit better I’ve done my job. I hope to have many lively discussions with you about S4 as well!!

  3. Fantastic analysis!

    I agree with you that what Taylor told Wendy at the garage was the truth. I value lasting relationships in everything, even with my dry cleaner, so I know Wendy is right highlighting that but Taylor is right that this has not been the practice at Axe Capital for a long time! The thing is it is not a good idea to mess with Wendy. Taylor may want to talk to Chuck Senior. Besides, I think they have one disadvantage next to their huge advantage of being very very very smart: youth. Yes, young lungs, but breathing is not everything. So I love this new angle that the show is bringing us: experience vs youth. I have always been advocating experience over youth, so I really think Taylor will hit a wall and have no one to turn to… and they have taken a HUGE risk with Andolov’s money. This shows me how desperate they were to leave Axe Capital.

    I will never be able to understand your dislike for Wendy and your contempt for Chuck. Don’t get me wrong. We just have different perspectives. For me, they are not different than Axe at all. They are three people that could get on the same page in the blink of an eye and can succeed together. We know what happened when they were sitting at the table together mid-season, so now they are starting to write the game for Season 4… and I am all for it! I find the three of them totally adorable at the table and saw through them. It is not power. It is not money. It is the love of the game. I can feel the adrenaline flowing in Axe’s veins as he starts to share his plan with them. And I really think he needs Wendy on his side, because she is as responsible in creating the NEW Taylor as he is, and we all know Wendy understands how brain works. She knows Taylor’s strengths as well as their weaknesses. Wendy will be a not-so-secret weapon in the war against Taylor.

    1. Thank you as always!!

      I totally get what you are saying about Taylor and their youth. Taylor still has a lot to learn, and as I said, they certainly have not learned all they could have from Axe. But, I know that there are also some things you can only learn by experiencing them. I understand Taylor’s need to break away, due to frustration and hurt; but I do think how they did it was wrong (hence the quote from Julius Caesar about ingratitude). But, as I said, if it was done the right way, where’s the drama in that?
      I don’t agree with Wendy that Taylor will spiral when they have no one to turn to; Taylor seems like they have learned to cope with life and its hardships all by themselves for a long time. And I also have to disagree: breathing is everything! You can go without food and water for days, but you can’t go without breathing for more than a few minutes! Taylor was being stifled at Axe Cap, by Axe. I really hated to see that relationship sour. Axe had finally seen someone with the “gifts” he possesses, and Taylor had a real mentor. I hope somehow this relationship can get back on track. If Axe can sit down with Chuck, after all the things Chuck has said and done to him, then there is hope for reconciliation with Taylor!

      My dislike for Wendy is twofold: I totally disrespect what she does (I don’t believe in a “performance coach”, I do believe in a therapist. As a “performance coach” it’s her job to make sure the employees are in the right state of mind to make the firm money, and not necessarily in the right state of mind for themselves), and she tries to act like she is better and above everything, but as you said, look what happens when you mess with her – she can get as down and dirty as anyone. She is not someone I would ever go to, and she is certainly not someone I would ever befriend. She is cold, manipulative, and controlling. Yes, Axe is many of those things as well, but since I 100% get him (his background, where he came from, how he got to where he got), I understand (and not always agree) him. I don’t get Wendy at all. Now, don’t get me wrong – I love Maggie Siff and she plays the role amazingly (and I loved her on Mad Men). I am one of the few people who can separate the actor from the role!

      Because Chuck is supposed to part of the justice system, I hold him to a higher standard than I do Axe. He also represents things I don’t like: privileged people thinking they hit a triple when they started off on third base!

      We do know what happened when this trio sat down previously: they schemed and damaged people just to save their own asses. And yes, it’s all about the “game” but they don’t play by the rule most of the time, so if you are cheating, is it really a fair game?

      I called them the Triumvirate in one of my previous posts, and I’m hoping this trio meets the same fate (as long as Axe is the Caesar/Octavian member of the group). That final scene was a Utopia, and we all know that never lasts on Billions.

      I can’t wait to see what happens in S4 since things can go in so many directions and always surprises us. That’s why we love it!

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