Saturday, September 17, 2016

What I’m Watching: Ray Donovan

Ray Donovan: Season 4, Episode 11 “Chinese Algebra” (B+)

I didn’t even realize that this was the penultimate episode of the season, mainly because I forgot that Showtime’s series usually produce just twelve episodes rather than the standard thirteen. Taking a week off for Labor Day only compounded that, but this was still a very strong hour. I was filled with a sense of dread the entire episode that Avi was going to be delivered already dead to Ray, though I suppose that the sight of him as close to it as possible with no near future trip to the hospital in store wasn’t much better. Frank is coming after Ray hard, and, like Ed, he’s happy to ruin his life given how much he was abused when Ray had the upper hand. Ray shrugs everything off and deals with it, but being handcuffed on the ground and then shown the woman who he risked everything to save who has now turned on him is disheartening even for the tireless fixer. Ray going to jail doesn’t seem like something that would be worthwhile to feature on this show, but I guess that means he’s going to have to make some hard choices. Killing two birds with one stone is probably too dangerous, but at least Abby got Bridget and Connor out of town with Bunchy and Teresa. Daryll was right to feel scorned and snubbed by Hector, and it’s a good thing that he was there when Terry took a fall since it was an important grounding moment for the two of them that should keep the least included brother connected to his family. Mickey has a way with words – and a ping-pong paddle – that makes him impossibly charming, able to figure out the best way to manipulate any situation to his advantage.

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