Billions on Showtime, Season 4 Episode 5: A Proper Sendoff

As winter has arrived tonight, the level of intrigue, negotiation and backstabbing in the world of finance and law in New York is on par, if not higher, than what happens in Westeros. Axe and Chuck, the real-life dragons in disguise as human beings, forge on and give proper sendoffs to those who mess with them, making this episode my favorite this season!

While Jack Foley gets into the oven for cremation, a delicious-looking pizza gets out of the oven at Una Pizza Napoletana. Axe, Rebecca, Chuck and Wendy are having a private double date with chef Anthony Mangieri personally serving their pizzaz.

Axe makes a toast to the new State AG. We find out this is Wendy’s first night out in a month. She thinks this opportunity of great pizza in total privacy was too good to skip. And when Chuck says if the only way he could eat this pizza naked on Times Square, he would, Wendy puts him in his place immediately.

“Yeah you would. You might even prefer it. The problem is you’d make sure to undress me, too.”

Wendy’s rage is still very much alive after a month.

You know Axe and I rarely see things eye-to-eye but this is one of those moments: Chuck was in a tough position and did the only thing he could to defeat those who wanted to finish his career. While Axe’s words do not make a good impression on Wendy, Rebecca’s do:

“Most people are self-absorbed narcissistic assholes. So they might revel in your shit for a minute, because it distracts them from theirs. But after that minute, they’re gonna forget about you, just go right back to their own shitpile.”

Well, it was the powder room in Mad Men, but it is “a few drags” in Billions where the women disappear and the men talk shop 😀

Knowing his wife, Chuck is worried about his marriage. Axe, on the other hand, believes Wendy will come around. But yeah it took him a couple of millions, a piece of Axe Capital profits and giving up on the civil suit against Chuck to have Wendy back on his side again. And her anger lingered after her return to Axe Capital — Wendy refused to have sessions with Axe after she came back to the company. And while I still believe Chuck did the right thing when he revealed his sex life to the world, it is too hard for me not to get pissed with these two guys when they talk about how they care about the consequences of their actions?!?! I have two words for them: Ice Juice. And if it had not been for Wendy, I doubt the two men would have been able to dig themselves out of their own graves. They’d better get a grip.

It seems Axe does not want Chuck to worry about his marriage because he has a new project for him.  Chuck has got rid of Andolov for him but it is still not bad enough. Axe now wants Taylor in a fucking cell?!?! Axe’s frustration is all over his face. Does this mean Axe has run out of moves to beat Taylor in the Games of Market? Is he that desperate to get rid of them ?

And while he agrees to help Axe, Chuck has other things in mind: Jack Foley may be dead but his collaborators are still alive and well in Albany.

The new state AG runs into the new SDNY US Attorney on his way to his new office. Bryan, who is into all things Japanese, presents himself as a Shinobi (aka as Ninja) who can get into the Shogun’s palace and cut his radial artery while he was sleeping, Chuck knows that Bryan cut his and yet he is still standing. So the US attorney not expect to get good cases from him.

Not too fast, Chuck!

Chuck arrives in his office only to get bad news. T’s request to file a records subpoena for Taylor Mason was rejected on the grounds that the office of the AG does not have the authority to do that. And Chuck knows it is not the governor’s “morning wood” but it is some “half-crow, half-cowboy, all son of a bitch.”

Chuck gets the details when he visits Governor Sweeney in Albany. Jeffcoat has threatened to freeze, delay and yank federal funds to the state unless the governor curtails the powers of the state AG — leaving no other option for Sweeney.

Senior calls a meeting at Duane Reade at 51 West 51st Street where he is picking up his “little blue helper.” And while no child wants to know about his parents’ sex life, Chuck finds out his mom and dad have not coupled since Tony Orlando made his last appearance on the Billboard chart – Google says 1979!

Senior knows Jeffcoat has “spayed and neutered” his son and is ready to shed some light on the current situation.

This exact location, Senior points out, was Toots Shor’s, a place where Albany power brokers hung out with mobsters and Broadway stars. More importantly, this was the place Senior met Black Jack for the first time. Foley was working on changing the the mayor of Utica. And he was not only able to make an incompetent man to be the mayor but he was also able to make the current mayor a lawn man!

Chuck gave the historical speech he gave last week to be a law man not a lawn man! So he asks his team to look into the New York State Assembly for misdeeds. And as soon as the list arrives, he sits with state senator Scolari at Donohue’s and succeeds in making Scolari not repeat himself for the first time! Black Jack is dead. Scolari’s name is on the misdeed list. So, yeah, times of tragedy may call for silence and sustenance… And adds Joe Scolari:

“Also a new spirit of cooperation.”

But this is Chuck and he does not leave anything to chance, does he? He seals the real deal with Sweeney at the Church of the Blessed Sacrament where the governor is getting ready to read his eulogy at Foley’s memorial. Now that Chuck has a list of misdeeds committed by the State Assembly, he has the numbers there to have his powers restored. But he is ready to make the governor a legend now if he is willing to sign the executive order allowing Chuck to begin the spring cleaning in Albany. Sweeney will be in the newspapers and Sunday shows for weeks. Now that is a carrot big enough for the governor to tell Jeffcoat to go fuck himself through his signature.

Chuck goes on the stage before the governor has the opportunity to do so. He is here to talk to his “Friends, Romans, and Countrymen” about the criminals and conspirators that infested New York politics. As the windbreakers storm the church and put the cuffs on Scolari and his corrupt colleagues, Chuck announces they will make corruption disappear from New York. A proper sendoff for Black Jack indeed 😀

And I cannot help give a little Damian Lewis trivia here: If you want to see a FANTASTIC “Friends, Romans, and Countrymen” speech, see Damian Lewis as Antony below in The Guardian’s Shakespeare Solos project.

As Chuck is giving a proper send off to Albany politics, Axe is giving his own to a young hedge-fund manager whose Business School education he funded. John Rice is the son of a former colleague who died in September 11 attacks along with many other colleagues.

John visits Axe to give him a check for $102 million – the capital Axe gave him when he started his own fund plus the profits he gained over the years. John has done as good as Richard Petty at Daytona and his assets have now hit the billion dollar mark. Axe is surprised John is spitting his money back at him like Furiosa did to Nux in Mad Max: Fury Road since it is very unusual to do so. John’s answer is simple. He wrestled at Princeton and he smashed it when he did it within his boundaries. And he got smashed when he became overconfident and bloated. So today he is writing checks to a couple of people. Yes, he is very grateful to Axe for all his help, but no, he is not taking the check back.

As soon as John leaves, Axe tasks Wags with finding out who else John has cashed out. And the answer does not make him happy:


Axe needs some Wendy time but he wears his therapist hat, too, since Wendy is in her office with her lights off hiding from everyone in the office. She is a private person who thinks her being exposed may in fact affect her ability to train and inspire the employees. Axe thinks differently:

“This makes you more of an exotic species they need to impress with their alpha dog energy.”

Ha! But Wendy wants him to cut to the chase. It is John Rice. Axe would typically destroy him immediately but he is not ready to do it because he has this sensation he cannot figure out.

Wendy is very clear: It is all about Taylor. Axe feels like one of his “kids” has just rejected him and does not know whether he could be responsible for the rejection. Yes he helped John with B-school and gave him capital to start his own fund but has he spent any time with him? Has he been the mentor he needed to be?

Axe now knows what to do but first things first: He tells Wendy they need her at Axe Capital. Who cares if people are talking or if anyone is talking about her sex life? She should not give power to them by staying in the dark.

This mutual therapy shapes the next few days for them.

Wendy is now hunting for Rudy’s social media password so she finds out what the people that matter, their enemies, are talking about her.

While we do not know whether the Opera LED Light and Galvanic Therapy Mask (Thank you, Jason Opland, for the information!) he is wearing will make Wags a baby Benjamin Button, we know that he can help Wendy with Rudy’s password: Nicole Aniston? No. Blair Williams? No. Cory Chase? Bingo. What a sad state someone should be in to make a porn star’s name his password? And aren’t Rudy and his wife having a baby?!?!

Axe visits John Rice Capital. How about a fishing trip in salty waters? And, oh no, this is not about the check John gave him but this is about Axe’s good heart feeling bad about not having been the mentor he needed to be for John? 😀 😀 😀 Off they go to the marina, get rid of their phones for the day and start on their bonding experience.

While John starts small talk, Axe is there for the real thing: They talk about John’s dad. He was Axe’s mentor at the old company. He was always the first to arrive at the office and asked for coffee without realizing nobody was there to do that. Axe used to go out and buy his coffee: Light and sweet. John’s dad liked it that Axe paid attention to details others did not. Oh, and he was a killer gin player.

In the meantime, something is cooking at Axe Capital. Spyros finds out all the prominent members of Team Axe are in the upstairs conference room, well, except for Ben Kim. And Wags tells Spyros they will call him when and if he is needed.

Axe and John catch fish, throw them back into the sea, have a couple of beers, and John finds out they are there because of the check! Axe advises him to check with Chris Webber before he calls Timeout. Business School and Christmas gifts were being nice but he invested in John’s fund because he saw something in him. But he now thinks John is afraid of being big and he does not like it. Axe has the check in his pocket, should he tear it up?


Then it is time to call it, but, hey, Axe cannot start the boat! And when he calls for help, he learns that even an offer of $100K cannot get him to the top of the towing line.

I have to say every time I see a boat in the middle of the sea, alone, I get some inevitable “Big Pussy getting whacked” vibes. Add to this John’s reference to Natalie Wood, and the episode title, and I am seriously concerned when it is truth time.

John spills the beans: He always knew his dad did not respect the way Axe handled business. And he knew about Axe’s situation on 9/11 way before the press broke it: Axe survived the attacks only because he was out meeting lawyers about his severance package – the firm was about to kick him out. John wanted to cut ties with him for a long time but he could not because he needed Axe’s money. But now that he is financially able, he wants no association with Axe.

These are words hard to swallow and I see pain in Axe’s eyes, at least for a second. But Axe will be Axe and as he starts the boat, we know and John knows he broke the boat deliberately. And when John tries to make amends when they are back, all he gets is a scoff from Axe. He tried everything to make John get the check back and he did not. So he will now face the consequences.

It turns out Axe disconnected the cables on the boat, and he called Wags, not the harbormaster. And as soon as they got the signal, they released an interview with Axe where he tells why he does not like John’s approach in trading and that he withdrew all his money from the company! And Spyros was called into the Wannsee Conference to be the “harbormaster” talking to the Vanquisher. And while John’s investors could not reach him on the phone due to obvious reasons, Team  Axe (we can see why Ben Kim was not invited) reached out to them with carrots (“no fee until 10% profit”) and lies (I do not think John is getting a divorce) and lured them into Axe Capital. John now has to take an Uber back to the city and live with his big financial loss. As they would say in Westeros: You know nothing, John Rice.

While Axe has been handling one rebellious kid, Taylor, the most rebellious kid, has scored big.

We find Taylor under extreme pressure early in the episode because now that Andolov’s money has left TMC, their investors may have suspicions about the company’s stability. And while Mafee sees Taylor as Vincent Vega sees Jules Winnfield (Pulp Fiction, anyone?) – the smartest person in the room – Sara thinks they need to operate like Winston Wolfe, the fixer in Pulp Fiction. solving their dead body sheet problem.

So enters Lauren Turner, a young Investor Relations expert who is tending to her hangover with a bottle of pickle juice!

Lauren’s first task is to get an appointment with NY Firefighters Fund who is  currently allocating up to $1.3B. And thanks to a night at Johnny Utah’s and a little help from her friends, Lauren is able to arrange a 10 minute meeting for Taylor.

Taylor breaks the bad news to Douglas that they need to bring in new money to support his “lattice grid fin” project which seems to be going fine. Taylor cannot fund the project now because profit margins in trading are small, and so they need size first to turn real profits. Everything depends on them bringing in new money.

And they do. Exactly like they went to the idea dinner and conquered the room, Taylor comes in front of the FireFighters Fund board and wins them over with their personal story. Their father made an important invention when he worked at an aerospace company, and what the company did to him was to ignore his contribution and value, and fire him. Taylor knows that what firefighters do are their contribution and value, and if the board is not careful, someone can steal it. Taylor understands it perfectly since their own boss tried to steal their contribution and value. And exactly like they did not let him do it, Taylor will not let anything like this happen to the Firefighters Fund. Cheers!

By the end of the day, Axe finds Wendy in her office with the lights on. Wendy has found out in her Google search that a lot of people are obsessed with her bustier and her whip — Axe admits he is curious about them, too — it started to mean nothing to her since she does not know them. Then she checked what the enemy has been talking and was surprised that while TMC employees were posting GIFs with Wendy’s head on Dita Von Teese’s body, Taylor told them to stop. Wendy thinks Taylor may see them as pathetic enough not to be a threat anymore while Axe thinks this is a call from someone who knows a thing or two about vulnerability. His verdict?


As Wendy calls Taylor to tell them they would like to talk, I am not able to read her. Could Wendy be thinking that because Taylor believes she is not a threat anymore she can manipulate them? Or now that she knows both Axe and Chuck are the same shit, could this call be the beginning of a beautiful friendship? Moreover, Axe now knows Taylor has approached Wendy to talk things over. And I wonder, once he hears about Taylor getting the NY Firefighters Fund, which should HURT him, whether he will ask Wendy to manipulate Taylor’s potential friendship to beat them at their own game.

Chuck has his powers restored but Chuck Senior is about to deliver him the worst migraine ever. Senior bribes Jake Biancarosa, a NY Department of Sanitation employee, to expedite the sanitation permits for his “Elysian Fields.” And when FBI Agent Dancshazy sees Senior’s permits, the SDNY summons Biancarosa immediately to ask about the details. Do Bryan and Kate plan a proper sendoff for Chuck? 🙂

Author: Damianista

Academic, Traveler, Blogger, Runner, Theatre Lover, Wine Snob, Part-time New Yorker, and Walking Damian Lewis Encyclopedia :D Procrastinated about a fan's diary on Damian Lewis for a while and the rest is history!

26 thoughts on “Billions on Showtime, Season 4 Episode 5: A Proper Sendoff”

  1. If Jeffcoat really tries to take federal funding from NY I’m begging Chuck to sue him and the administration into the stone age in court, it’ll be a spectacular legal battle. As for Senior, this can’t hurt Chuck legally I don’t think. He didn’t help his father get those particular permits, though I understand the fallout is going to be huge from a family and emotional side along with the political blow back if Senior goes down.

    50/50 on which way Wendy will go myself, though it would be deliciously ironic if Axe and not Chuck was the one to push her over the line to consort with the enemy with his lack of empathy/sympathy/understanding. I can forgive Chuck myself because I think he’s actually right, but Axe is supposed to be her Platonic life partner 🙂

    1. Thank you for reading! Yeah Kate and Bryan cannot do anything about Chuck at this moment. He is safe in his AG seat as long as he is not involved with his dad’s business but will he be able to let it go when his dad is concerned? Time will tell!

      I certainly think Chuck was right doing the thing he did last week – telling those who thought would stop him to go fuck themselves in his historical speech. That said, the lack of empathy and understanding in Axe and Chuck with respect to Wendy’s feelings are quite telling. I am 50/50, too, because we all know Wendy can hold a grudge and she was very pissed off with Taylor when they used her to get on the raise team and then made a coup against Axe 🙂

      Cannot wait for more!

  2. Great recap. This was an interesting episode. Hopeless optimist in me expected the boat time to be a “father” and “son” truth-telling, Axe’s soul stripped bear for once. But, of course, this show has no desire to show us anyone’s soul. To which my only response is: “Lame.”

    I too was curious about why Wendy picked now to call Taylor.

    Wendy has always known who Axe and Chuck are. She was just used to knowing it all from a vantage point of someone in control, both of her career and her marriage. Now that Chuck has taken some of that control away, I think she’s reaching for regaining some of it by getting to Taylor in her own way, independently of what Axe has planned (with Chuck’s help) to do. I don’t think she’s reaching out because she needs a friend. She’s reaching out to see what she can do to help Axe Cap beat Mason Cap, to get the edge back and for Axe to get back on top for real.

    As for Chuck Sr.’s Elysian Fields, kudos to the guy who can even find undeveloped real estate on the waterfront anywhere near Manhattan. I begrudge him nothing for building something for his great-grand children to be proud of, whatever it does to Junior’s career be damned. The Duane Reade thing was fun too. One of my best memories of NY was learning interesting history bits like that. There’s so much untapped history in that place, and I’ll never not love it!

    1. Thank you for reading!

      I think we have seen Axe’s soul last night: There is none. This person, as they call him, is more of a nation-state (no emotions, only rationality) than a human being (bounded rationality) and we all know that his way of dealing with problems is to turn on the automatic pilot. I think he really felt bad when John said the words he said during truth time, at least I saw the pain on Bobby’s face for a second…and then boom! Automatic pilot works and he is himself again with zero remorse about what he has just done to this young man’s career. Because he does not want to set a precedent. People should know if they rebel against the king, THIS IS what they get in return. But in a few months time, if he needs John’s help, he can go and be friendly to him, give him the money he needs to revive his business, and move on. We know he did it with Viktor, Carly and others they were all happy to get back in his good graces!

      Wendy has always known these two guys. You are absolutely right. I think the exception this time around is Axe and Chuck not having much empathy to Wendy’s feelings about what Chuck did — and I think Chuck did the right thing, again like a nation-state, but I also think you cannot let people hold a threat about your head… anyway this is another debate! — could sway her in another direction. Wendy is more of a human being than ever this season. And I also think her call to Taylor could be strategic, but then could it turn into a sincere relationship once they get together? And I also keep in mind Wendy can hold a grudge, and we know Taylor manipulated her to get their way. So I think how this storyline will play out will be very interesting to see.

      Elysian Fields is a real construction site in Greenpoint – up and coming part of NYC so I am sure there will be multiple Elysian Fields there in a few years 🙂 And oh yes the Duane Reade thing was total fun!

      1. IDK about pain, I saw disappointment and then frustrated anger, no pain, or anything else resembling a heart.
        This has to be the most soulless character Damian has ever played. No redeeming qualities that I can see (except, as Damian said, the fact that he seems to respect intelligence… which, frankly, I see as something Damian injected into the character, not an organic part of him as written). He’s a giggling schoolboy during Chuck’s reveal last episode. A child in so many ways. Not a grown man with endearing boyishness as was hinted in the first season, just a straight up child. He and Rebecca seem to have a middle school level courtship happening. No mature passion as far as I can see. (though Kopp’s latest remark in response to someone asking if Bobby will take her to Bruno’s gives me some hope again, that he’ll go deeper…hope springs eternal!) Have a feeling she’ll be the one to betray him, shutting the door to whatever there is of his soul for good. I hope I’m wrong. Don’t like the thought of him even more cold than he already is.
        I agree he’s a nation state. Sadly there’s just nothing endearing about a nation state. Especially one that feels no compulsion to care for its citizens or give as much as he takes. True, there is the relationship with Wags, but that, to me, the relationship of Fool to King. The King loves and needs the Fool, but he’d send him to gallows at the first hint of betrayal.

        1. It seems where I see pain, you see frustrated anger. I believe him when he says he is sorry to hear those very hard to swallow words from John. Maybe because I believe respect is the most important ingredient in a relationship and figuring out someone is not respecting you may be extremely painful.

          The creators themselves say that these are cold, calculated, soulless characters which I believe are quite close to the truth in these circles — of course with some exaggeration because this is fiction after all! Yes, there is nothing endearing about a nation state because it has no emotions. It is only about maximizing your utility. And Axe and Chuck are two utility-maximizers. I think so is Rebecca. She is almost a female Axe. And these people do not have the time for mature passion. Because they do not care about any one else but themselves after all! Truly selfish creatures like a nation-state. Still, Axe shows human qualities once in a while — like going all the way to Arkansas to stop Dollar Bill from starting a chicken Holocaust! It is good to know he drives the line somewhere. So when I read your words, it seems to me that you want Billions to be a different show than what it is, but it is not and it will not be.

          1. I just want it to be closer to human than it is. Damian has played bad people before, and it always works beautifully on shows that have been human. I sometimes think the feeling i get comes from there not being many quiet moments on the show. Dialogue rattled off one after the other, references that I’ve had to learn to ignore because they are often not meant to add to the story but simply meant to manipulate the audience, to determine who is “in the know” and “cool” and who is not. So yeah, I do believe the show could be better. And I always hope to see some flicker of it living up to its potential. Whether or not that happens is obviously nothing I have control over.

            Also, just another nit-picky thing. It was a couple of send-offs, but literally only, not figuratively. asfaik. Chuck’s speech at the memorial was a literal send-off to Foley. What Axe did to destroy the kid was also a literal send-off. Not sure where you saw a figurative send-off.

          2. The only thing I could say is that I like the show as it is. No, this is not a quiet show. Very dialogue driven and no word is used just for the fun of it.

            I do not know what you mean by references “are meant to manipulate the audience.” I do not think the writers try to distinguish the cool from the un-cool. I love it when I understand the reference, I am very bad at sports references obviously because I did not grow up here but I get most of the books, old TV shows, actors, movies, and I have to say I like it a lot when I know what they are talking about.

            I thought a sendoff is done in a celebratory way and that is why I used “figuratively.”

  3. I don’t think I’ve ever disliked Axe’s actions more than in this episode. And I thought after the first four episodes we were seeing a bit of a change in Axe, like he actually has feelings. Sure he was still after revenge but maybe not as ruthless. Boy was I wrong – to destroy that kid’s whole life just because he could was as heartless as Axe has ever been. Thanks for your great recap!

    1. Thank you for reading!

      You know everyone talks about Axe as a nation-state. He is more of a nation-state than a human being because he has close to zero emotion when he makes these decisions. John’s dad died in the towers. And John knew growing up that his dad did not have much respect for Axe or the way he handled business. He also knew Axe survived on 9/11 only because he was meeting lawyers to go over his severance package! And the only thing he did was to give his money back. He just did not have an association with him anymore which is understandable. I think it is not just about John Rice to Axe. He just does not want to set a precedent where other “kids” could also rebel against him and leave. That is why he wants to roll over Taylor, too. You can leave Bobby Axelrod only he asks you to or he agrees to for whatever reason.

      I think I was pissed off with Axe more when he stole Donnie’s Christmas (I was fine with him using the sick man since it was a mutually consensual agreement) but when he chose not to let Donnie about possible experimental trials, he played God! Axe should take responsibility for his actions some people may not like — especially what he did on 9/11. Personally, I do not find what he did on 9/11 wrong, it is just too opportunistic to stomach but a completely rational action, and not a crime. We can debate about its morality, but when business is concerned, we all know morality is often left out.

  4. What he did to Donnie was awful but in some strange way I understand it. He was trying to stay out of jail. What he did to this kid was just for the hell of it because he was mad or hurt or whatever. I do understand what you’re saying about setting an example for other kids that have his money invested in their funds but he ruined John’s life. Sadly Donnie was going to die no matter what treatment he received.
    Is there anyone in Axe’s life that he doesn’t use for his own purposes? When he went to visit his mom, I thought it would be nice to see more of that relationship. But I really think he just went to get the magazines for Wags. Now I’m thinking that Lara and the boys are better off without him. I wonder if he is just using Rebecca for her money and connections. Even Wendy has been used by Axe. The only person that I think he has never used for his own benefit is Wags.

    1. You are right. He truly ruined John’s life and for what? To set an example so other kids stay well-behaved. Lara and the boys may be better off without him, I agree. I think he genuinely likes Rebecca, she is almost a female Axe, isn’t she, but they would probably not share with each other their business plans – they may of course prove me wrong later! Wags is a good example and I think those two have such aligned interests that Axe doesn’t need to use him, Wags would volunteer to do whatever he needs to do 🙂

  5. Yes I believe that Axe cares about Rebecca. She is every bit his match. I would love to know what she thought of Axe’s plan for John or if they would even discuss it. I also believe that he loved his wife and children but when Lara threatened to take the boys away, as Axe says, “that’s something we don’t come back from”. He expects to be forgiven (from Wendy) but offers no second chances to anyone else. All of this being said, this season is unbelievably great. I have even learned to ignore the pop culture references that I don’t understand. It doesn’t take away from the show for me any longer.

  6. Thank you for another great recap! I am relying on your posts to link all the references (non financial of course!), since this week was another week of me only getting 1 (the Chris Webber). I see a lot of people complaining, but I don’t mind. I know I will get the full explanation from you on Sunday nights, and now feel like these references are like salt on a meal – some people like more, some like less, but it’s not the meal! I still can follow the story without knowing the references!

    Something crazy has happened – now that Wendy has shown her human side, I like her, and am rooting for her. I hope that her meeting with Taylor is just two people connecting, and talking out what went down. Wendy made Axe try and see how he contributed to the whole Taylor situation (them leaving) and he never will. But, I think Wendy played a small part in showing Taylor how manipulation works as well. Taylor knew all about how Wendy manipulated Mafee for her benefit. So, Wendy also contributed to what Taylor has become as well. I always believe that Wendy was pissed off at Taylor, yes because they left, but also when they met at the parking garage and Taylor was a bit too truthful for Wendy’s taste. Anyway, I’d love to see Taylor and Wendy team up and put these bad boys in their places. Both Chuck and Axe are rolling over people with no consequences. I’d like to see them get their comeuppance, and who better than Team Tendy?

    1. Thank you for reading! The cultural references are definitely love/hate stuff with the fans. Some are in love with them and some hate them. I think they are fine, too, as long as they do not make it difficult for me to understand what is going on. And, most of the time, they do not. I did not know who Webber was, but I absolutely knew about Natalie Wood and Vincent Vega/Jules Winnfield/Winston Wolfe 🙂

      Oh yeah THE WORLD IS UPSIDE DOWN. And, hey, I still think Chuck did the right thing, the only thing he could do under the circumstances; yet, I think neither he nor Bobby have handled Wendy’s reaction to Chuck’s speech well. She certainly has not left her husband, so the marriage is still there, and needs to be restored and there should be more empathy and understanding towards Wendy. Bobby asking he is also curious about her bustier and whip?!?! Yeah they are good friends so maybe it is okay he says that but still…

      Oh yeah Wendy made or at least tried to make Axe see how he contributed to Taylor leaving the company and as soon as he knew this is as much about Taylor as about John Rice, he went and destroyed John Rice’s career. For what? Just to set an example that no one can leave him unless he asks them to or gives his blessing. WOW. He is a real nation-state with no emotions attached. He felt pain for a second there (Damian blows you away!) when he heard those words about John’s dad not respecting him at all but such stuff would never stop Axe from being Axe.

      I completely agree, and Taylor said this, too, I think in Season 3 finale, that Wendy also contributed to Taylor’s “education” about manipulation! Taylor is an Axe Capital product for sure. They still have their integrity intact to a large extent though. So we will see how their meeting will play out… I really cannot read Wendy as I wrote in the review. It could be sincere, it could be strategic, or it could be strategic that could turn into sincere after the meeting. Can’t wait!

      Oh the conversation Axe and Chuck were having about themselves caring about the consequences of their actions? That convo will get an MVP award from me this week 🙂

      1. I just want to let you know that I appreciate all the hard work you put into your posts. Your heart and soul go into your work, and it shows. I love seeing your point of view, and your analysis of these complex characters.

        Thank you for making Billions just a bit more FUN!

        1. Thank you! It is a real pleasure to think and write about the show and its remarkable characters. It takes my entire Sunday and I have a lot of fun! And I can’t think of a better team, thank you for being on this journey with me!

  7. Perhaps I am the only one who does not mind the fact that Axe was even nastier in epi 5 than in previous outings. My feeling harkens back to a number of interviews Damian has done in which he has said ( and I paraphrase here), “playing the bad guy is more fun”. For all I know, it may take more talent when the actor himself isn’t a “bad guy”. Comparing Axe to Soames Forsyte, it is easier to find a few more redeeming features in Soames; but when I think of the character he played in The Escapist….ugh! Axe has not sunk to that level yet. One more thought, and this may have been addressed somewhere and I missed it, but Taylor throwing up in the bathroom???? My first thought, pregnant? While Taylor warmed a little to their father, I still loathe the way he is treated, assuming he was a decent man when raising Taylor.

    1. Hahaha I can see playing the bad guy could be fun. I do not mind how nasty he gets, I have to say. I get pissed with Axe, not with Damian 🙂 Yes, it definitely gets more talent to play a guy that is very far away from you, and for Damian is two-fold: A guy with blue collar roots and a guy that is quite nasty to others.

      Taylor had a lot of stress because Andolov’s money is gone. I have seen a lot of comments on social media about a possible pregnancy, and the show creator Brian Koppelman tweeted that no there is no pregnancy and it was stress. I did not think about anything but extreme stress when I saw them throwing up. Probably because I also threw up under extreme stress — in graduate school and before tenure. When I was on job market, I had an incredible itching problem which was again all about stress. I think stress has now become such a normal part of our lives!

      I think it is not that they do not have any affection but it is just how Taylor communicates with people. They are supporting their dad’s project after all. And it seems — from the new episode promos – Axe is determined to destroy it.

    1. Thank you so much, I will use this link with proper credit to you. And good to know the results are amazing. Let’s see if Wags will become a baby Benjamin Button 🙂

  8. Totally off topic here, my apologies, but I never know where to put comments unrelated to the current episode. While watching the tragedy unfold at Notre Dame the other day, I was reminded of episode 5 of Band of Brothers, “Crossroads”. It has Dick Winters (DL of course) in a scene with the cathedral in the background and one of the Rose Windows is shown. So I rewatched it and am sending good thoughts to the people of Paris who have lost so much this week. But thank goodness no one was injured.

    1. Watching Notre Dame spire going down was heartbreaking. But you’re absolutely right thank goodness that no one was physically hurt. I totally forgot about Crossroads, yes of course Winters goes to Paris! I should watch the episode again. And no worries about where to put comments, you can put them anywhere, Connie, since we do not have a “general comments” section.

    1. Oh My God. Is this THE Sean Patrick Reilly aka Joe Scolari the esteemed senator of NY state? 🙂 If it is you, a big FAN here! I loved Scolari as a character, this career politician repeating himself when the other side tries to make a point until the other side gives up 🙂 “Eastern Elk needs all the help they can get. Delicate species requires a certain habitat.” Still giggling! Hats off to a wonderful performance!

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