Ray Donovan
Housewarming

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: A+ | 31 USERS: A
YOU GRADE IT
Night Moves

EZRA

Ray's getting nervous because they can't put Ezra under during the surgery -- I like to think it's so he can shout out the memories and smells they are activating when they poke his brain ("Niagara Falls! A Dodgers game! Grapefruit!"), but I assume it's just to make sure he isn't getting lased in the important bits -- but the nurses ask him to step the fuck off, and Ezra groans that he won't tell them any secrets, and then he's out the door.

HOUSEWARMING

Mickey gamely lets a neighborhood dude into the party in a pretty cool, old-smoking-dude way, and then the kids show up. It's adorable and embarrassing and mostly it's racist.

Mickey: "Holy shit, my beauties are here! Princess, where'd you get the little chauffeur?"
Kids: "What in the serious fuck?"
MGW: "Actually this is my car?"
Mickey: "You're still black, aren't you?"

He says it like it's an apology, like "what's the fuss?", but the whole thing is so randomly horrible and would be so impossible to explain to him that they all pick their battles and keep moving smoothly past it. It's going to be so weird and very cool when the "casually racist grandparent" becomes the exception and not the rule, won't it? What a burden lifted for so many of us, in generations to come. He congratulates Conor on bucking the system -- just like Ray, back in the day -- and they head inside for the worst thing.

Bunchy: "Hey! Look who it is! Your mom said you weren't gonna make it, but I knew you were coming. Hey, you want to hear a funny joke?"

Something about his body language, and the fact that Mickey is standing there owl-eyed, made me feel like I knew what was going to happen, and then it does: He starts showing Conor the "half-nelson, full-nelson, Father Nelson" butt-rape joke Mickey likes to tell, where he pretends to rape his son Bunchy.

I had to hit pause for a little bit, because that is the saddest yuckiest thing in the world. Now, Bunchy is blameless and obviously is fucked up on drugs, and there's a huge piece of this that's just trying to figure out how to be avuncular/paternal with a younger guy: Based on Mickey's example, coming into their lives twenty years after Bunchy came of age but effectively still in the middle of Bunchy's adolescence, you can see how he got there.

Problem is, those boundaries are not hard to understand, and the fact that Bunchy is untroubled enough by Mickey doing this to him that he can do it to another person (Conor's not the last person he'll treat to the "joke" tonight, just the youngest and most horrifying) means that it has fallen into the wrong compartment. Fine, he's on drugs. There are probably lots of SNAP-pers here going through their own shit, maybe this is a joke they would laugh at if they were drunk or sad enough.

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Ray Donovan

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