“Damian tickles you and delights you with his charm and his wit.” — Maggie Siff
Well, while we already know how charming and witty Damian could be, it is still a treat to hear these lovely words from Maggie Siff, who along with Damian brings to life one of the most intriguing and complex relationships we have ever seen on TV. It is sincere and it is strategic. It is friendly and it is flirty. It is personal and it is professional. It is delicate. It is difficult. It is delicious. And while I believe Season 3 has revealed there is no romance in it, it has also revealed there is real partnership. Bobby and Wendy find meaning in what they have built together and can draw the best out of each other. In case you have missed my earlier posts on these two, you can find them here, here, here, and here. Continue reading “Bobby Axelrod and Wendy Rhoades: A Special Relationship – Part V”
There are many things that Bobby Axelrod and I have in common: New York born and bred; working class backgrounds; very non-traditional road to Wall Street; our love of gambling lead us to our career paths. However, the one thing that has always been my favorite commonality is our love for heavy metal bands and their music. Heavy Metal is not the most well known genre of music, so let’s explore Bobby Axelrod and his music, and what it says about him.
In each season of Billions, at least one episode has featured a song and a t-shirt of a metal band that must be Axe’s favorites. The writers of Billions don’t do anything just to do it, so we know that these choices are there to tell a story, shine light on who the character is, and to set a tone.
Metal is very misunderstood: devil worship, drugs, biting the heads of bats, or just screeching guitars may come to mind if you say the words “heavy metal”. But, it is so much more than that! Last season, I used Black Sabbath lyrics to open (and in some cases close) my “From the Trader’s Desk” recaps. In most cases, if I hadn’t referenced it to Sabbath, you’d have wondered what philosopher or poet I was quoting. Metal lyrics are some of the best I have ever heard; they tell stories of pain, loss, confusion, success, etc. – lyrics that would certainly resonate with a young man from Yonkers who’s Dad has up and left, and whose home life is full of conflict. Continue reading ““From the Trader’s Desk”: Bobby Axelrod – a Man and his Music”
“Pretend we’re having an argument.” —Bobby Axelrod
A good hour of television absolutely starts with good writing and I pride myself in calling Willie Reale, the writer of Billions Season 1 Episode 10 Quality of Life, a genius way before I find out that he is, in fact, one! I don’t know if you are familiar with MacArthur Fellowships also known as “Genius Grants” but Mr. Reale is a recipient of this fellowship “in recognition of his ingenuity in creating theater and theater education programs for young people.” Bravo!
Quality of Life, with Donnie’s memorial service being at its heart, has a number of moving parts; however, Mr. Reale delivers the story seamlessly with a number of timely back and forths between the memorial service and all else going on and the episode’s director Karyn Kusama perfectly translates the writing into action. And, in my humble opinion, Brian Koppelman’s tweet sharing with us that the fake argument scene between Axe and Dollar Bill was Reale’s idea alone deserves standing ovation for this brilliant writer! Continue reading “A Tribute to Everyone’s Favorite Billions Moment: The Fake Fight”
We are extremely thrilled Damian has received BAFTA Los Angeles Britannia Award for Excellence in TV last night. While we have all the news, pictures, and videos from the ceremony on damian-lewis.com, we have a FUN walk down the memory lane here on Fan Fun, celebrating Damian’s brilliant TV career, all the way from his early TV roles in popular British series to the iconic Dick Winters, Nicholas Brody and Bobby Axelrod.
It is no secret I am fascinated by Bobby Axelrod’s backstory in Billions, in particular his family background. And the few glimpses we had into the life of young Bobby in Season 1 tempted me to think hard and deep about this man, who grew up in a broken home, and kick off the series “Bobby Axelrod: The Boy Whose Dad Never Came Back.” This series takes a close look at Bobby Axelrod’s human side mostly as a husband, a father, and a son. You can see the first three installments here, here, and here.
Bobby Axelrod is not someone I would hang out with in real life. He terrifies me exactly like he terrifies the actor who brings him to life on screen. Yet, I have come to sympathize with his story and loved some of his qualities over the first two seasons: He grew up in Yonkers in a working class family. His dad left home when Bobby was 12. Bobby had to work as a paper boy and a golf caddy to make pocket money, played cards in friends’ basements and discovered betting at the racetrack. While he is now a self-made billionaire, Bobby did not forget where he came from. He is loyal to his past, his old friends, and Bruno, the only father figure in his life. Continue reading “Bobby Axelrod: The Boy Whose Dad Never Came Back, Part IV”