Previously on Billions: Season 2, Episode 7 “Victory Lap”

Bruno comes down stairs with a baseball bat in hand to meet his uninvited guests to find it is Bobby and Hall who are here to pick him up so they can go visit Marco. Marco feels sick, partly because Sandicot has not received the gaming licence and partly because Hall is intimidating him by his mere presence. Axe is playing hard ball with him too.

source: Showtime

Chuck is playing ball with Kevin in the Park, but this is a photo opportunity for him as Dimonda appears for the first time this season. Dimonda questions Chuck on his next step as he has little else to achieve as USA.

Chef Ryan also makes an appearance in this episode and what an appearance. Caught at it on the sun loungers by the Axelrod family, Lara and Bobby read him the riot act, but Axe concedes that Lara has pardoned him after she responds “lucky you” to his answers to her questions. Anyone else think Lara just didn’t want to suffer Bobby’s cooking.

It is Chuck’s turn for the riot act as Wendy pulls him up for using Kevin as a prop, exactly what Chuck Snr did to him. This naturally turns into an argument about Wendy going back to work for Axe. Chuck feels that he must share everything he is doing, but she does not. Wendy rubbishes that suggestion, countering that Chuck can do what he likes regarding himself only, but not regarding the children. She is right on the point about the children but Chuck can’t be blamed for being upset about her going back to work for Axe. The result of this conversation is total freedom for them as individuals.

Team Axe is having a meeting about how to resolve the Sandicot issue. Eveready suggests austerity which Axe is not liking. He wants another solution. Ben asks about the PR nightmare this would cause, but Wags is more concerned about the money lost nightmare. Axe wants an answer that doesn’t involve destroying the town.

source: Showtime

Chuck Snr has something to tell Jnr which will “floor you”. He withdrew his membership from the golf course in anticipation of Chuck’s political future. Jnr does not want to hear about the poll his father’s friend had commissioned because it is unethical. Snr knows his son though and as far as he is concerned the picture of Kevin and Chuck is that of a man running for office. Snr stresses the importance of Wendy to Chuck. He thinks Wendy would make Chuck unstoppable.

Hall meets Axe on the beech to advise that Marco had nothing to do with Bobby being screwed over. The gaming commission switched the licence at the last minute. Joe Scolari made the switch. Hall is having trouble pinpointing where the move originated from.  Slowly, but surely, the writers have been making Chuck Snr an issue for Bobby.

Axe meets with Scolari to discuss the switch to deny Sandicot. Scolari says Sandicot did not get it because the gaming commission chose the location that would bring the greatest benefit to the greatest number of people. Axe, of course, is not having that as he knows the switch was last minute. Axe gets nowhere with Scolari. He meets with Hall. Axe’s opinion is that Scolari is on a string and Hall thinks the Governor is pulling it. Hall will see what he can find out.

source: Showtime

Danzig is in session with Wendy talking about Russian hackers and Sandicot. Wendy seems to be suggesting that Danzig is worrying about the Russians because to the people of Sandicot Axe Capital are the Russian Hackers. She tries to steer Danzig to fight for the people of Sandicot.

Axe Capital is preparing its PR for the default of the town. Danzig does his best to try and halt it, suggesting ways they could invest and help get the town back on its feet. Taylor takes a different view, that the town is like a business and should be treated as one.

Lonnie and Kate are having lunch and are not happy that Chuck has taken Bryan to lunch at his favourite restaurant. They take this as a sign Bryan is about to get Head of Crim.

Bryan is getting a lesson in extraction of information as Chuck talks about mutton chop, kangaroo and rat. “I’m not ready yet” Bryan says when the waitress tries to take his order. I agree but not about the order.

Before Bryan can decide what he wants to eat or attempt to settle his stomach, they are going to have the talk Bryan has been dreading. He may have been dreading it for months but when faced with it, he does not stand for Chuck’s attempts to be indignant about the issue. He admits to calling OPR.

source: Showtime

We see a flashback to him and Axe in The Conversation. Axe follows him out to his car and asks him if Axe Capital is bugged. Bryan says not officially, but he would not be surprised if it were unofficially.

Axe says something that is like what Chuck said to Wendy in the Conversation about her working with criminals.  Axe says to Bryan

“The man you work for now isn’t just dirty. He is worse than that, he is a hypocrite and if you know that and you still let that happen, I think you know what that makes you.”

Chuck is upset Bryan let Axe get to him. Bryan points out Axe spoke the truth and he gets an admittance from Chuck he made more than missteps. The writers appear to like symmetry/parallels. Chuck and Bryan both committed an act of betrayal against someone they previously trusted because they felt betrayed.  It is why I think Bryan still has his job if he wants it. The Head of Crim seat is going to be vacant for a while yet.  However, Chuck says he is committed to total transparency between them from now on and Bryan can quit or stay and prove his loyalty. Bryan has the mutton.

Wendy is not happy about the foreclosure of Sandicot and expresses so to Axe. Wendy feels that once Axe has already decided, he uses others to make himself feel better about his decision.  She is right. He does it continuously.

Chuck receives an envelope from his dad with the polling figures he shouldn’t be looking at and the numbers are not bad.

Bryan is back at the Barbers where we saw him speaking with Orrin for the first time in the Pilot, walking with far more purpose than then, or we have seen from him at all. Orrin unsurprisingly seems to know Bryan had lunch with Chuck and hopes congratulations are in order.  Bryan isn’t there for a friendly chat, he doesn’t have any mentors, rebuffs the renewal of the offer from Axe and says FU to Orrin, Axe and Axe’s FU money.

Snr and Jnr are discussing the poll results. Chuck wishes to explore the possibility of standing for office. Jack Foley is the man whose approval Chuck needs and Snr says that if Jnr gets his granddaughter a Clerkship then they will just have to wait for the call.

source: Showtime

Wendy is quite enjoying her freedom with Craig so much so that she is a bit worse for wear in the morning. Wendy presumably arrives home just before Chuck comes in, asking if he just saw the nanny getting in a taxi. Wendy asks why she would be there in the morning, deliberately avoiding the situation, but Chuck knows. However, he seems to agree with his father that he will do better with Wendy by his side. He apologies for his reaction to her going back to Axe Capital, saying if it is where she needs to be to be happy then she should be there. She didn’t see through that one? Or is it the case with their new-found freedom she is just ignoring it?

Mick Danzig quits. Axe interrupts Mafee’s session with Wendy, who is not happy about it as it takes her long enough to convince the guys Axe does not have her office bugged. Axe is unhappy that Wendy influenced Danzig’s thinking “That is my job” she responds. Axe still isn’t happy and Wendy tells him to fire her. He storms out.

Source: Showtime

Chuck is meeting with Adam to try and get Emma Foley a Clerkship. Adam is not for it as he wants to put into practice “give it to those who earn it”. This would be admirable if Adam hadn’t admitted to piggybacking on other people’s influence to get where he is. Does he think those people won’t expect favours in return? Chuck takes the opportunity to remind Adam it was the “back channels” that put him in the position he is in now. Adam says

“Remind me again and this is the last meal we share.”  

Hall has worked out that Foley is behind the switch from Sandicot.

Axe is visiting with Boyd in prison to discuss Sandicot. Boyd calls Axe “Roberto” and tells him

“If they hate you enough, they will find legal grounds to f**k you”.

Bruno is at Axe’s to plead for Sandicot and this scene breaks my heart. The fact that Axe can’t give Bruno the answer he is looking for says Wendy is right. He has made up his mind, he just needs someone to justify it for him. Wendy wouldn’t, Bruno certainly won’t and we then see why Mrs Axelrod is Mrs Axelrod. She will give her husband the approval no one else will.

Axe drives away from the house giving the order to seize Sandicot’s assets…

source: Showtime


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