Ray Donovan

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

Abby: "And where were you? Why are your pants wet? The marina, huh? You buyin' a boat?"
Ray: "Just the way that you said that was somehow vicious. You are the worst."
Abby: "I am! I am THE WORST!"

She bitches him all the way out the door, and goes on about her day. Surely there's a waiter or pregnant lady she can punch in the face, somewhere in Calabasas. At least until Mickey calls, which should be in about five minutes.


Ezra is not really paying attention while the doctor explains his surgery -- a flap in the skull, to zap a spot behind his frontal sinus -- so Deb the Mistress has to explain it to him again once the doctor is gone. The best part is the exceedingly cute Elliot Gould-ishness of this line: "What are they doing? Are they shaving my head? I pride myself on my hair! You know that!" And she's like, "Yes, sweetheart. I do know that." But even then, all he wants is Ray.

This episode is neat because it brings into relief a thing I have been wondering about. When you get the basic idea -- Mickey shows up to ruin his life -- it definitely goes to the Sopranos place that hits the Showtime demographic in its sweet spot, which is to say: Who can't identify with somebody whose parents are a fucking hassle? Baby Boomers have pioneered new ways to resent their parents (and children) -- it's one of their favorite ways of being icky.

But as with that show, and as with Baby Boomers themselves, it's secretly much better than that, because it's more about resenting what comes with the hassle of the parents: The illness, the needs, the sadness, the complicated relationship. And so just like how sad it was when Uncle Junior or Livia Soprano got sick and vulnerable, you have here two sides of the coin: Mickey is everything they hate and fear about their parents' power, and Ezra is the misery and sense of loss. Their sweetness. So my original concern -- is this ripping anything off or are we actually on new ground here -- is off the table, although I still think the show is neither as interesting nor as bad-ass as it seems to think it is. But it's good ground to tread, especially seeing as how we've got a showrunner/creator who is a woman -- not to mention a queer recapper, of a younger generation -- observing all of this from the outside (of certain dynamics).

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Ray Donovan




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