Last night's episode was called "Where the f*ck is Donnie?" and presented a big problem for both Chuck Rhoades and Bobby Axelrod. For Rhoades, it's that Donnie Caan was his office's mole on the inside, and when your lead-- and only-- informant goes missing, it's pretty bad! For Axelrod, it's also not great, since we learned last week that Caan has actually been working as a double agent. Rhoades and Axelrod, of course, more problems than just Donnie, and let's deal with those first.
On the Axelrod front, he's attempting to put out the fire caused last week by the revelation that he bet against aviation, hotel, and shipping stocks on 9/11, after seeing the planes fly into the Twin Towers, and then took those profits and formed Axe Capital. The CT vandals who write "F*ck you pigs" on his car, the protestors shouting outside his office, the police pension fund pulling its money from his firm, and the museum that wants to take his name off their building-- Bobby can deal with all these affronts. But total revolt by the firehouse where Lara Axelrod's brother worked, which lost a lot of guys on 9/11, is what really stings. For one thing, Bobby's donated $250 million to them in one way or another over the last decade and a half. For another, they "matter" to him. For yet another, they're making his life really difficult right now, what with getting Lara's restaurant shut down for faux fire code violations and the general vibe they're spreading around that Bobby Axelrod is an a$$hole. Unfortunately, the speech delivers is not exactly as stirring as he'd hoped, and a couple of them-- including Lara's ex, who she calls a "f*cking simpleton" for not telling his colleagues Bobby is a standup guy-- destroy her farm, which she decides to shutter, along with the restaurant.
On the Chuck Rhoades front, he's apparently been doing a pretty to really poor job of even acting like he's recused himself from the Axe Capital case, considering the Attorney General's office is all, wink wink, sure sure, you're "recused," FBI agent Terri gives Bryan Connerty-- the official lead on the investigation-- sh!t for being Chuck's b*tch, and Wendy Rhoades so very obviously knows her husband is full of it in his claims he's standing back for the good of their marriage, even if she hasn't outright confronted him about it/told him he's not fooling her yet. In the last scene between Chuck and Wendy, we see him running to the office, right after she got a call from Donnie Caan saying he's coming back, all but confirming to Wendy that Chuck's been lying to her. Odds Wendy leaves Chuck by the end of this season? I'd put them at kinda high.
And then we have Donnie Caan, who Team Axelrod and Team Rhoades spend a good chunk of the episode trying to find. After he buys 1.8 million shares of Kemlot Biochem, at the direction of both the government, which thinks it's about to nail Bobby Axelrod for insider trading, and Bobby Axelrod, who's playing some sort of double secret agent game, Caan takes off his button-down shirt, leaves his phone on his desk, and heads to points unknown, first making sure to swap out his EZ-Pass with that of a guy who had the misfortune of parking next to Donnie in some convenience store lot. Later, we find out that Donnie has headed to Cleveland to seek spiritual guidance from Guru Ash. The road trip appears to have been good for his soul, and he calls Wendy to tell her he's headed back and enlightened man.
Unfortunately for Donnie, he gets picked up by the Feds on his way home and they're not exactly thrilled with his decision to go off the grid. Especially since thanks to Axelrod's new room at the office that conveniently screws with the audio feed of someone wearing a wire, they still don't have Bobby on the tape telling Donnie his (insider) source on Kemlot, whose recent acquisition made Donnie/Axe Capital a $100 million profit. Donnie appears to come through with the name of an FDA official who allegedly gave Bobby the tip, but it's unclear if that's actually legit, as Axelrod could've very well told Donnie to feed the Feds that piece of information. To that end, by the end of the episode we still don't know how actually Axelrod is playing Rhoades via Donnie, or if Donnie coughing up blood and passing out in the interrogation room is all part of the plan.
Thoughts/Feelings/The Ole EZ-Pass Switcheroo:
- As Donnie is collapsing, we see Chuck on the other side of the glass with a panicked look on his face. Is he freaking out that his informant is going to die without testifying and/or has he figured out what Axelrod is up to?
- Chuck wants a federal judge-- the one who has "Dollar" Bill's case-- investigated...seems like a great or terrible idea.
- Is Lara going to spray paint "F*ck you, Doc" on Wendy's car? Because it seems like that's where this relationship is headed!
Earlier: Billions Recaps