Billions (2016) s02e08 Episode Script

The Kingmaker

1 [Chuck.]
Previously on Billions [Bobby.]
Danny fucking Margolis.
What brings you back? I have some ideas, and I'd love to share them with you.
Did you hear it okay? Hello.
I'm Taylor.
My pronouns are they, theirs, and them.
- How long you been here? - I'm an intern.
Just breathing the air here can be discomforting.
The air is thinner.
- That is a picture - of a man running for office.
Which mansion will it be, Gracie or the Governor's? Relax, dad.
You need some personal time with Black Jack Foley.
You must be talking about Sandicot.
[Chuck Sr.
The proposed location of a casino.
- Does it have to go there? - [Flagg.]
If the town defaults, I know what you stand to lose.
You need that casino as soon as goddamned possible.
Go, do whatever the fuck you want, and so will I.
You want the freedom to see other people.
Consider that door open.
I am committed to complete transparency between us.
So you can either quit right now or you can stay.
Sandicot's not getting the gaming license.
- It's over.
- So, why would Foley want to fuck me? The committee chose the location that would bring the greatest benefit to the greatest number of people.
What do you know about Sandicot? Go ahead, seize their assets.
- What kind of assets? - [Everett.]
Sandicot also has - an original Remington.
- [Bill.]
The fuck's a Remington? [Mafee.]
American artist from the 19th century.
He specialized in depictions of the Old West.
I don't know why you want to hurt all of these people who got so little as it is.
You go up there, and you cut off the gangrenous parts.
And then we go in with charter schools and outreach, for about $30 million, we capture the tax write-off, and those kids will be better off than their parents, or we, ever were.
Seize all their assets, property, utilities, machinery, vehicles, buildings.
Everything, even Town fucking Hall.
Dramatic music [telephone ringing.]
[keypad beeps.]
Jack Foley! This is how I like to start the day.
Oh, I can't match your enthusiasm at the moment.
Oh? Sorry to hear that.
I've done for you, haven't I? Recently and at a great profit to you, and yet, your son lets me down.
The clerkship.
It's the bad form that bothers me.
He doesn't know about Sandicot, doesn't know how you stepped up.
Can never know.
That was a favor for me.
Yes, I torpedoed Axelrod at your behest, and while Chuck may not know that, he does know that I was planning to help him in Albany.
That should have been more than enough.
I'm throwing in with Bob Sweeney for governor now.
That pains me to hear, Jack.
I-I hope that this, uh Ah, don't get it in a twist, Charles.
You and I are fine.
I look forward to seeing you at the party.
[keypad beeps.]
Is that Sandicot's Remington? [Deb.]
Not anymore.
That is the most magnificent thing I've ever seen.
Is that Yul Brynner? - The Remington is here.
- Don't confuse that hunk of bronze for a "Mission Accomplished" banner.
I need to know why Foley donkey-punched us.
I haven't been able to find a deal we did - where he got screwed.
- You won't.
He could have been nursing that grudge for a decade.
Look, I know why is among the more tantalizing questions, but you're usually disciplined enough not to get into it.
This isn't undisciplined.
It's vigilant.
If there is someone out there with the focus, the animus, the reach to crush me, I need to know.
That describes a hundred hedgies.
Yeah, but I see those guys coming.
I can handle them.
Foley's different.
He has proven that he can cause great damage without leaving any clues behind.
Light touch.
Tight grip.
Call Foley directly.
Get me in a room with him.
Then I'll know if I have an enemy.
Suspenseful music [key chain clacks.]
Your locker, Mr.
Thank you, Domingo.
Now, some people, when aging a cigar, keep it at 70 percent humidity.
That mellows the Puro.
I, of course, want no such thing.
I take it to 80 percent 'cause I prefer The funk.
Exactly right.
Look at these.
1998 Special Fundadores.
Aged to peak complexity.
And if they're not smoked soon, they'll go one-dimensional.
I was hoping to smoke them with you at Foley's party, but while I've received my invitation, you were left off the list.
You didn't get his granddaughter that clerkship, and she went crying to him.
Well, I'm sorry that Foley feels let down.
He feels disrespected.
He could have gotten the girl the damned clerkship himself, but he wanted you to do it for him to show fealty, to show that when you were governor, you would remember him.
What he wanted were his balls gargled.
And if he thinks that's the relationship we'll have - as this campaign progresses - Oh Sonny it's a little too late for that now.
He got himself a new show pony.
Who? Bob Sweeney.
Buffalo Bob? Two terms as mayor, three in the Senate, and he puts on that damn EMT uniform at every parade.
- He's second-tier.
- He was.
But now he has the inside track to the nomination.
Because Foley says he does.
Yes, sir! We don't have kings, Dad.
We live in a democracy.
You sound like a fucking hippie.
I know that this is difficult to grasp, but the age of the kingmaker is past.
I don't need a power broker.
I have my own power.
And when it is made manifest, Foley will zip his fucking pants up and look me in the eye.
Suspenseful music [door closes.]
Foley won't talk to you.
He won't even talk to me.
Does that seem like the behavior of a man whose acts were unintentional? No.
But it doesn't mean you have to engage.
Sure it does.
And do it old-school.
Rough him up? I'm all for it, but his company's not publicly traded.
We don't operate in the steel sector.
Well, figure out where the fuck he gets his iron.
He can't own all the mines.
I need to know where Jack Foley sources his ore.
Most steel in this country doesn't come from ore these days, it comes from scrap.
Foley ain't a scrapper.
Someone's supplying him.
Find out who, and Axe is gonna crush Foley's business.
I like a porterhouse as much as anybody, but I don't want to waste your time.
- We're not switching primes.
- [snapping fingers.]
Hold on.
What? He's trying to get us to switch brokers.
Wants to wine and dine us me.
- Tell him we accept.
- Okay, in this context, I don't understand "we" or "accept.
" Yeah, you know what, let's hear the pitch.
Tonight at eight? Great.
See you then.
I thought we were loyal to Spartan-Ives.
We're loyal to the bottom line.
If there's money to be made by switching Plus a night of hard-core partying in the name of business.
You're all over it? I bet my life you won't say that again.
- I didn't mean - Oh, your meaning was clear! This was a compound fuck-up.
First, you misplay the invitation.
Then you treat me like I'm Courtney Love in '93.
You think I can't handle myself in a simple fucking sell-side hug and tug? - I, no, I - Organize a car to pick me the fuck up later! [door opens, closes.]
I didn't want him relapsing on my watch.
I'm not a big self-help guy.
- This is Dr.
Lenny "Gus" Gustaferson.
- Currently works freelance, but until recently, he was the performance - coach over at Axe Cap.
- What, they fired him after they brought back Wendy Rhoades? Yeah.
Don't suppose he was happy about that.
Can't imagine that he was.
Now, what about doctor-patient confidentiality? Even if he wanted to talk Well, he may be Dr.
Gus, but he's not an MD.
Degrees in kinesthesiology and from the Martha Beck Life Star program.
No, you know what, I don't want to know about him.
You don't think that's what Chuck really wants? No, I'm out of the guessing-what-Chuck-Rhoades- wants business.
My new line is listening to what he actually says, and his standing directive is stay clear of Axelrod, so that's what we're gonna do.
Mid-tempo rock music Is Marc meeting you at the airport? Just the architect.
Wanted to keep it - under the radar.
- You know, you really don't have to go to Sandicot if you don't want to.
That's kind of the whole point of having people.
Yeah, but if we're building a school to coax some goodwill, I think it's probably a good idea for one of us to actually be involved.
It's the least we can do.
We did take their prize statue.
Huh, well, you know I'd come up with you if I could.
Today Suny Binghamton takes precedence.
- Have a good trip.
- Yeah, you, too.
You realize she is a he, okay? And she's huge.
Like 300 pounds.
We finally flip her over.
She's coding, and the darned paddles don't work.
We all know what it's like when the paddles don't work.
Means I got to go manual.
So Uh, excuse me, folks.
- To be continued.
- Thanks, Bob.
Back to chasing ambulances, Chuck? [chuckles.]
Bobby boy.
All wrapping wounds and pressing flesh, or have you got a minute? The state has a lieutenant governor, an AG, influential university presidents.
All are a tick or two ahead of you.
And some of them, Hell, maybe all of them, are gonna get in this thing.
Foley thought you were the one that would cede the most control.
A few months from now, when you and all those others are in the gubernatorial scrum, churning, gasping, drowning on dry land, you know where I'll be? Sitting in the corner, watching, jerking off.
Gliding above you.
Sailing straight into every debate.
A mainstay of every conversation.
You've been polling.
No, but I've seen numbers.
They're encouraging.
I bet you've seen the same numbers.
I know which end of the poll is up.
So then you know that there are some areas where I could use some help.
- Upstate.
- Your backyard.
Oh, shit.
You want me to be your lieutenant governor.
Come on, I'm here with you.
Man to man, sketching the way forward.
You know, I have won the lowliest fucking elected offices we've got.
Hell, I was the goddamned sanitation commissioner for a year.
Yeah, and I rode the trucks.
I've done it right.
I've done it hard.
And this this is my time.
My name recognition is eight times yours.
Don't underestimate Black Jack Foley or me.
And name recognition means dick.
Nobody knew George Pataki's name, and then they elected him three times, Chuck.
So when I've been governor for 12 years, they'll know my fucking name.
Suspenseful music [chatter in distance.]
- This is insubordinate.
- Oh? And what would you call snaking someone else's lead? Don't say you were protecting me.
Protecting you? This is the kind of shit that made me What, like me or dump me? Both.
Well, since we're here [door opens, indistinct shouting.]
[door closes.]
We can wait out here till they're done.
I'm offering to buy your product.
I'm offering to buy the product from all seven of your scrap yards at a considerable premium.
And you're saying no? I'm saying I already have a buyer.
You didn't take this meeting to tell me no.
Actually, I did.
But to tell you no nicely.
I don't know what's going on between you and Foley, but I know it's enough that you're taking aim on him, and I don't want to do you disrespect because I don't want you taking aim on me.
Okay, I'm gonna skip the part where I say, "Who's Foley?" or, "What does he have to do with this?" I'm gonna go straight to doubling the offer.
370 percent of what you normally make.
I'm basically extorting myself.
And I wish I could take advantage, but this isn't a negotiation.
- There's no magic number.
- There's always a number.
Not in this case.
I do business in this state.
I live in this state.
Foley could make both of those more unpleasant than six hours on the cross at Calvary.
I get out of bed one morning and find overnight I'm jammed up with licenses and unions and taxes and he's found a dozen other ways to hurt me I didn't see coming.
I thank you for your offer.
Hopefully we part on good terms, but if not Suspenseful music You're more afraid of him than you are of me.
A billion dollars.
Are you offering me that? No.
I'm not fucking insane.
But you would have taken it.
I do something that's valuable.
I strip people naked to the elements, and then I help rebuild them out of solid fucking rock.
- Now, can you appreciate that? - I can.
Don't believe you.
Because if you did, you wouldn't be asking me to snitch.
Axelrod banished you.
He made you a Ronin.
[papers thud.]
I'm willing to bet he didn't give it a moment's thought, while you've been thinking about it every second of the day, suffering from something you've never felt before.
And all because you pledged yourself to an unworthy lord.
Axelrod lacks five of the eight virtues of the Bushido.
Oftentimes, he wasn't even polite.
Under these circumstances, honor doesn't demand silence or self-harm.
It demands vengeance.
[papers thud.]
[clears throat.]
I can't deliver that vengeance.
I didn't have that much one-on-one time with Axe.
He was used to flirting with Wendy Rhoades.
I offered a different kind of medicine.
So I didn't have access to the kind of conversations that you're interested in.
But I know who did.
His chief of staff.
Steph Reed.
That's her name.
She was in on every pitch, and she doesn't work there anymore, either.
- Taylor, right? - Right.
[door closes.]
How can I help you? I have to tell you, I've had 927 hours of therapy.
So you've seen cognitive, humanistic, probably some holistic.
What do you think you need? I need to know Mafee.
He's struggling.
He's our executing trader.
He needs to be "on.
" He's not.
And his fall-off coincided with my advancement, which makes me I was his intern.
He could have taken credit for my work.
He didn't.
So now you're feeling guilty.
And you're wondering if that's healthy? More than that.
I want to know if it's useful.
Do you care about your relationships at Axe Cap? How are those relationships? Good.
- Why do you think that is? - I know why.
Because the culture is set from the top.
Since Axe likes me, other people do, or pretend to.
Why do you think he likes you? One of the two reasons anyone likes anyone else.
Either they recognize a part of themselves, or they see something they can use.
In this case, I imagine it's both.
There's another reason people like each other.
They see something they're lacking, and they want to be near it.
Is that what's between the two of you? I've noticed a connection.
Everyone always just assumes we were fucking.
I didn't.
We met at a similar moment, when we were both trying to figure out who we were going to be.
- And did you? - What? Turn out the way you figured back then? In some ways, we did.
And in other important ways, we maybe fell a little short.
You're at a similar moment with a similar unlimited possibility.
- Okay.
- In all my years here, no one has walked through that door because they were worried how another person was feeling.
If you were anyone else, I'd think you were pranking me.
I am different.
Uh, yeah.
As far as Mafee goes, maybe just tell him you think he's doing a good job.
He's not.
And I don't like to lie.
To myself, to others.
I've been there, and I'm past that.
Well, then encourage him without words.
Let him know you care.
How? Just buy him something.
Look, I'm just saying.
How many major banks have had their CEOs sent to fucking jail? Jail! It's a small list, isn't it? Spartan-Ives is tainted.
A lot of shops don't want them walking through the door.
I get the anti-them.
What's the pro-you? Industry leaders, like Axe Capital, need to get away from the gilded cage.
- That's why we host - How much will you undercut.
Spartan-Ives over the next two years? Ten percent.
That's promising.
On the money.
But on the pleasure end, it's not gonna cut it.
I mean, dinner.
An ordinary evening augurs ordinary returns.
Let me show you how I like it.
Fire-walk with me.
[chair scrapes.]
Mid-tempo rock music Your mother wouldn't approve of how my mother raised me But I do, I think I do And you're an all-American boy [exhales.]
Oh, sorry.
Does anyone want one? Vaportini.
He's actually vaping alcohol.
Ooh! It really enhances the flavor of the green fairy.
Maybe you say "when," Wags.
Apart from being able to smoke your beverages, how is this different from where we would have taken you? You would have brought us to a demeaning, run-of-the-mill titty bar.
This is an empowering cabaret that celebrates the feminine ideal.
College-educated professionals by day, entertainers by night.
Martha here is a viral marketer.
And a SoulCycle instructor.
You know I can't do that out here.
Capital idea.
Whoo-hoo, hoo-hoo-hoo! Hoo-hoo-hoo-hoo-hoo! Mid-tempo sultry music I want you wrapped around me Like a snake You don't want to get in on this? No lap dances.
I made a pledge.
To Deb? You're exclusive? She's not.
I am.
I like your mustache.
I have a mustache? On your knees You ever see guys in here from SoulCycle? All the time.
Small world when you're tapping it back.
That guy is staring at you.
Ah, ah - [laughs.]
- Tommy Barkow.
- Fuck! - He doesn't get Martha.
You bought her for me for the night.
You got to jump primes now.
- [laughs.]
- Whoo! [laughs.]
Enjoy your white truffle drink.
You're wasting the world's most perfect fungus.
- Try it.
- Pass.
You know what it takes to find a truffle? A hog, a dog, whatever keenly scented, carefully trained animal gets the assignment, spends a lifetime traipsing through the dark, sniffing out the slightest aroma.
And only then the digging begins.
And what do you think they're digging through? Shit.
That's the thing we don't say much about, right? The things we most value, the things we pay most dearly to ingest are grown in shit.
What the fuck are you talking about? [woman singing indistinctly.]
I had a conversation with Bob Sweeney that didn't go as smoothly as a Dick Button figure eight.
Now my only option is to squash him where he stands.
Oppo research, leverage.
Only I can't do it.
Well, that kind of politics, it's disgusting.
You know, I interned once on the Hill I meant I can't be a party to it personally.
The due diligence.
The digging.
You want me to do it.
That's what this night is.
What makes you think I know how to do something - Do you know? - Of course.
I'm well-mannered.
I'm not nice.
You're basically asking me to form the committee to re-elect the president.
I always knew I'd end up like John Mitchell.
- Ira.
- I'll do it.
Fuck it.
Mid-tempo music You know that I practically live at St.
I must have forgotten that.
You didn't throw those fucking Patriot Bank twinks in my face to tell me we're over.
You did it to spice up the relationship.
What will you give me to stay home? [chalk scraping.]
[door closes.]
Wags, what are you doing here? Spartan-Ives is reducing their fee 20 percent - for the next two years.
- Outstanding.
I guess loyalty gets rewarded.
Mafee helped.
Say the other thing, the thing that made you come out here instead of just texting.
20 percent is good.
It's great.
But it's not drive-over- in-the-middle-of-the-night great.
It I'm not supposed to be the one all fucking worried about grinding out the extra 20.
Uh, yeah, you are.
It's your job.
On paper.
But when I'm actually doing it, it means you're not because you're worried about something else.
There is no reason to spend this much energy, time, and money trying to parse the secret motives of some son of St.
You're right.
There isn't.
Except for one.
That's what it tastes like, anyway.
Fear in the back of my throat.
You know, most people, they try to move away from fear, try to organize it out of their lives as soon as they're able.
Me? I cultivate it.
I try to recognize it and order it and use it.
That's how I survived growing up, and it's how I still live my life today, heeding and listening to my fear.
And what's it telling you now? That this is not just some political move.
It's personal.
And I cannot rest until I fucking know why.
Dramatic music Axe Cap was not what I thought it would be.
What did you expect? A training ground.
A chance to observe every part of the industry sitting next to the best mind in the industry.
And instead? You ever read The Banality of Evil? I could see myself ending up like that.
Following orders, normalizing.
In a way, it was a relief to be let go.
You care to be a little more specific about the orders you didn't want to follow? I signed an NDA.
If I tell you any details about Axe Cap, I expose myself to liability.
And the loss of a classic-six.
Look, you're the lawyers.
You're not honestly advising me to break a valid contract, are you? Your medal.
We knew that you went to West Point, but that you care enough to display it, well, you weren't just making your family proud.
That's a real sense of service.
I know I'm supposed to give their lawyer a heads-up, but I think I'm pretty safe to talk if you bring me a subpoena.
I would have loved to bring you more, but she won't talk without a subpoena.
I can't get one without creating a paper trail, and I wouldn't make this official without your blessing.
Well, you might as well put a bowl of ramen in front of me.
- I mean, I wanna slurp this up.
- I knew you would.
But I no longer give in to those appetites.
This isn't an indulgence.
It's an obsession.
- Tell me I'm wrong.
- No, you're not.
But that obsession nearly had me out on the street.
So now I have to ask what's the upside? Seeing that fuck in jail.
You still want that, don't you? I want to see him in the ground.
But I also want to see myself in Albany and you in here.
So maybe there will be a time when the moment presents itself, and then I'll sign subpoenas and request warrants and we'll mobilize and we will take him.
But that can't be now.
I'm glad I stayed.
I'm glad I let you.
Remember that board that's been begging me to join? [Wags.]
The petting zoo.
It's an animal conservancy, I think.
Anyway, tell them I'm in, along with the big donation.
The only thing I want from them is their assurance that Jack Foley be named their man of the year and that I'll be the one presenting him the damn thing.
A package came for you.
I put it on your desk.
It smells musty.
Thank you, Donna.
Suspenseful music Ohh.
[door opens, closes.]
I thought my secretary was fucking with me when she said you were here.
- No, she told it true.
- So I see.
Tell me you didn't, uh, trek all the way up to beautiful Buffalo to ask to be my lieutenant governor.
You know, see, I need diversity down the ticket, you know? Oh, don't sell our potential ticket short.
Come on.
We have so many areas of commonality.
Gun control, healthcare.
Everything but family values.
What do you mean? Well, I was thinking about your son.
- The gay one.
- [chuckles.]
You really think people have a problem with that - in this day and age? - No, I think you do.
Which is why you sent him to that religious boot camp when he was 17 to pray the gay away.
Boy, the letters that poor kid sent to his friends.
You sling innuendo like that without evidence, you're gonna look like "They said we sexualized masculine connection" because we didn't have enough healthy, non-sexual connection with our fathers.
So they made me sit shoulder-by-shoulder with another kid and then put our arms around each other.
They called it 'healing touch, ' though, of course, all I could think about "was kissing his shoulder.
" Enough.
There was a sympathetic counselor.
He made copies, smuggled them out.
- I can read more if you'd like.
- Don't.
I see the wheels turning.
I see you trying to figure out how to triage this one.
Well, what about the political confessional? You can stare into the camera and deliver your mea culpa.
It would work, only you would need to start out with name recognition.
So I guess you have a choice.
This can be the way the people of New York finally learn your name for forcing your son straight in the name of the Lord.
"Healing touch" should play great in the five boroughs.
Or you can step aside and explain that you have looked at the future, and where we're going, "We need Rhoades.
" Suspenseful music You think this is how this is gonna go? I will see you in the primaries, Chuck.
Looking forward to it.
A Hell in a Cell poster? Autographed by Taker and Mankind?! - Ben, did you get me this? - What? I know it wasn't you.
Everything after Sanmartino/Zbyszko is bullshit.
Okay, you just called the Macho Man bullshit.
What was Stan Stasiak and his heart punch? [Taylor.]
Actually, I got it.
Uh, thanks.
It's got a "Brokeback" sort of charm.
"I just can't quit you.
" [cellphone vibrates.]
Yes? Yeah, I know where that is.
I'll be there.
That was Foley.
Just invited me to his house.
For the party? No.
This just arrived.
There are so many things that we have gotten relaxed about.
Running out ground balls to first.
Knowing a martini means gin.
Isn't it nice that someone is maintaining standards? What do you think it means? That he appreciates your aggression.
Or he's furious that you assassinated an ally.
Assassinated? Sweeney quit.
Out of the race before it even began, on the heels of your visit.
Suspenseful music Come on.
Let's go pick out some tails.
Dramatic music [door closes.]
Can someone take care of my car? Valet's not open yet.
Danny Margolis.
Anyway, uh, I'm not a valet.
I started as a valet.
Worked my way up to waiter.
Barback's just around the corner, so Heh.
Heard you ended up doing time.
Didn't make me happy.
Yeah, paid my debt, all that.
Hey, uh, Axe, if you can use somebody to analyze companies or bring you ideas, you know You know, I always liked you, Danny.
But you did the one thing no one can ever come back from.
[footsteps approaching.]
I'm honored that the Restore the Eastern Timber Wolf Conservancy has seen fit to name me its man of the year, but I'm also a little surprised, since I didn't, well, until this morning, actually know what an eastern timber wolf looked like.
Kind of mangy.
I understand it's the coyote blood.
Terrific organization, though.
Wouldn't you agree? Haven't a clue.
Hell of a gambit, hmm? If this was just a little row between the two of us, we'd shake hands, I'd take that stupid award, and you'd have nothing more to fear.
So, are we shaking hands? Humbled as I am to have been singled out, I must decline.
Do I need to call those wolf people back, or? I'll take care of it.
So, you got what you came for.
You now know That you weren't trying to fuck me over out of some personal animus.
Someone asked you a favor, and you wouldn't want that same person to see us cozy together on the dais.
Would you mind telling me who? [sighs.]
Inelegant of you to even ask.
Because it forces me to say that the Location Board combs through many factors.
Sandicot submitted a proposal and was under consideration, as were many other locations.
Ultimately The committee chose the location that would bring the greatest benefit to the greatest number of people.
Yes, I know the party line.
You could have written something more stylish.
It's not supposed to be stylish.
It's supposed to make you feel a little bit ill, like an out-of-season oyster.
You got into this room, Mr.
Axelrod, because I appreciated the, uh, fluidity of your tactics.
Thank you.
But our relationship ends right there.
If we'd come together some other way, I'd feel certain we might have been something like friends, but that can never happen now, despite the rareness of your gifts.
I hold to a code of loyalty, which may very well be outmoded, but has served me well.
And to be honest, I like the way it makes me feel when I choose sides.
Well, that's something I can understand.
Understand this, too, then.
I know you're not satisfied with what you've learned.
Your search will continue, and it may take you down a great number of paths.
But don't come back down this one.
There's nothing for you here.
Now, if you'll excuse me Yeah, sure.
Ahh, you have to get ready for your thing.
A last question, if you'll indulge me.
Do you like parties? Oh, I fucking love 'em.
Up-tempo music [Bobby.]
Hey, Margolis.
Turns out I do have something for you after all.
That's great.
Should I stop by the office? You're not walking through that door ever again.
This isn't a fresh start.
I have to use you for what you are now, Danny.
But if you come through for me, I'll pay off your house.
[knock on door.]
Oh, thank you for switching nights with me.
It has all been really last-minute.
Yeah, I know.
If you think my dinner suit was trying too hard, this must look ridiculous.
No, no, I wasn't [sighs.]
I've been thinking about our fight.
Which one? After you used Kevin as a photo op.
It was a mistake.
Yes, I know.
You told me.
Hence the fight.
No, what I said when I was angry, that, that was the bigger mistake.
I was closing off, and boundaries are one thing, but we shouldn't be encouraging each other not to share things.
Honesty is essential if we're gonna figure this out, whether we're finding our way back to each other or I've been regretting the same conversation myself.
I didn't mean what I said about seeing other people.
I twisted your words to get us there because I was feeling defensive, and, uh, I suppose, guilty.
I went on a date, I think.
No, it was a date.
A woman from jiu-jitsu.
Nothing really happened.
A kiss.
I stopped it there because whatever our declared status, in my heart, it felt like adultery.
It's okay.
Really? Yeah.
I'm sorry.
I hijacked the conversation.
No, no, I, um I feel like I should volunteer something, too, in the spirit of honesty.
You have something like that? Yeah.
Yeah, I have something to admit.
[door opens.]
[chuckles lightly.]
You don't look ridiculous.
You look fuckin' hot.
[cellphone vibrating.]
Hello? [Wendy.]
It's Wendy Rhoades.
I'm sorry to call so late, but I figured - you'd still be at the office.
- I am.
That first question you asked.
Are your feelings about Mafee helpful? More than any stock you'll ever champion, more than any time you'll impress somebody by being right.
You haven't noticed yet.
By the time anyone notices, it's usually too late, but that place has a way of obscuring, corroding, eating you from the fucking inside.
And you have a rare chance to survive.
You're so far ahead of where Axe and I were when we were your age.
We hadn't made hard choices.
You know yourself better.
And your feelings are a lifeline connecting you back to that place, screaming at you from your core, "Don't forget me.
Don't forget.
I don't like to lie.
" I don't.
Somber music If you start to feel yourself not feeling, do what you did the other day and come find me before it's too late for both of us.
I have to go.
[line beeps.]
[string quartet plays from speakers.]
[indistinct conversations.]
- This is how you do it.
- Uh-huh.
He's got piss all over his big boy's.
I'm just gonna play one.
Uh, maybe two.
["Landed" plays from piano.]
Foley doesn't fuck around.
That's Ben Folds.
No, even when he fucks around, he means business.
We'd hit the bottom I thought it was my fault And in a way, I guess it was I'm just now finding out what it was all about - Mr.
- Yes.
Foley would like to see you in the library.
[Ben Folds.]
Moved to the West Coast away from everyone She never told me that you called Back when I was still, I was still in love [Ben Folds singing in distance.]
Your father's been telling me about you since you were in knickerbockers.
Don't think I ever wore those.
No, he showed me the pictures.
Must have been you.
He'd never go around with photos of the bastards.
He's put a lot of time into you.
My own children didn't have the drive.
Maybe I spoiled them too much.
Had to find other prospects.
But by this point, it's a pretty deep farm system.
I've been drafting blue-chippers, high upsides, and reclamations for three decades.
So why should I sign you off the street? Oh, I think you're confused.
I'm not trying to sell myself to you.
You didn't just put Sweeney out of the race.
You crushed his spirit.
No reason to do that unless you wanted to tell me something about you.
Maybe I just couldn't help myself.
Or maybe I knew you were dangling him to see what I would do.
Whatever's meant to happen always does.
I had a gut feeling.
That's how I do this.
That's how I do all of it.
So, what's the trick? The trick? Hmm.
Well, like most, it's bracingly simple.
You pick the right man, and then you get him the fuck out of his own way so people can actually see him.
Elections aren't about ideas.
Elections are about candidates.
And candidates are about what's in here.
Suspenseful music I am the right man.
I am not going to ask you.
You can't think it works that way.
Will you make me governor? Yeah.
My friends will become your friends, and your enemies will become mine, as some already have.
Uh, about that clerkship, you can put that - out of your mind.
- Well, thank you.
I'm sure my granddaughter has put it out of hers.
It's not really over.
There are other judges more senior and prestigious.
I will deliver you that clerkship.
Whatever's meant to happen always does.
[door opens.]
[door closes.]
[indistinct conversations.]
[Chuck Sr.
I know.
I know.
It's starting to feel real.
Heavy lies the head that The hesitation is still about Axelrod.
You know the joke about the two bulls on top of the hill and the cows down below? The young bull wants to run down and fuck one.
And the old bull says, "Let's walk on down and fuck 'em all.
" That has been repeated so many times in movies, TV shows.
It's taken as received wisdom, except the thing is you can't.
Nobody gets to fuck 'em all.
You got to choose which one you're gonna fuck, and then fuck her good.
[insects chirping.]
[cellphone vibrating.]
[dog barking.]
Fucked Up's "Turn the Season" [Bobby.]
Son of a bitch.
They go up, and then they go down Chase a smile with a frown He knows that his joy will stop Waiting for the other shoe to drop He's a ship on the sea Welcome to the Yale Club.
Excuse me.
Are you a member? Do I look like a fucking member? - We have a dress code.
- Good for you.
And she stepped on the billiard ball! [laughter.]
Rhoades! [Bobby.]
Rhoades! [Bobby.]
You fucking weasel! [Bobby.]
Rhoades! Show your fucking weasel face! Chuck.
Uh Well, uh, Bobby, if you wanted to play squash, you should have called ahead.
I know what you and your two daddies did up in Sandicot.
I really don't know what you're talking about.
You thought moving that casino would, what, fuck me up? Get me to sell off one of my jets? Well, guess what I'm doing now.
Losing your religion in the Yale Club? Drinking that town's fucking milkshake.
Everything that was once theirs will be mine, sold off, recycled, stuck on a pedestal in my office, doesn't matter.
In the end, I will not lose one single penny from Sandicot.
In fact, I will be made whole, more than whole, but you will have spent all that political capital for nothing.
Well, as I said, I really have no idea what you're talking about.
But, Dad, isn't there a dress code in the common areas? Did Morgan at the front desk not offer you a courtesy blazer? - Hmm.
- We apologize on his behalf.
That type of rudeness is unacceptable.
You know, they say that a boy never really becomes a man until he's buried his father.
Now, mine's been dead to me since the moment he walked out when I was 12 years old.
I don't remember if I cried, but I do remember that I was forced to grow the fuck up.
So it always warms my heart when I see a boy who still has his father's shoulder to lean on, his father's contacts to deploy, his father's balls clanking around in place of his own, which haven't quite dropped yet.
Dramatic music Hold on to this man, Chuck, for one day soon, he will be gone, and then you will finally have to do something for yourself.
Intense music [sighs.]
[men murmuring.]
Let's take a walk.
[siren wails in distance.]
Son, everything I did was for you.
Because you were born too soon and started too late? Look, if you're going to hide me, just let loose.
Dad, Dad, I'm not mad at you.
Not this time.
Is that your way of finally saying thank you? Axelrod is spiraling.
Oh, I recognize the signs because that was me not too long ago, and a man like that can be induced to a mistake.
He's already made one, hasn't he? Yes.
You know, I don't know if it was part of your plan or a happy accident, but Axelrod has decimated the part of the state where I poll weakest.
He's shown you his neck.
He has.
And you get to become the defender of the people.
And you'll get the governor's mansion for your efforts.
[clears throat.]
And Connerty's started.
You got one of those Cheroots? - Fundadores.
- Mm-hmm.
Yes, I do.
Maybe in the end, you're the one guy that does get to fuck 'em all.
Fucked Up's "Turn the Season"
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