Ezra hits what he thinks is a person, hides the body in his trunk, and turns up hours later out of his mind at Cedars. While recuperating, he's visited by Mickey Donovan, and in a twist that is a pleasant surprise for everyone -- both men, and the audience -- they form an immediate bond. (It's great, but ends rather abruptly when Ezra starts hallucinating that Mickey is an actual golem of legend.) One of Ray's operatives helps him confirm the accident was imaginary and the corpse was just a tree trunk, but all is not well: Ezra's dementia, as it turns out, is coming from a brain tumor, and he's not long for this world.
Of course, this news -- which sends Ray over the edge into a self-destructive spiral that would make any Donovan proud -- comes only at the end of the episode. First, Ray and Avi break into Van's house, discovering his whole giant plot to bring them down. But worse yet, Mickey and Ezra's whole conversation was wired, a setup by Van Miller that puts all of the secrets on shout going back twenty years, which thanks to Ezra's faulty memory not even Ray gets to know.
Ashley handcuffs herself to the LA apartment's towel rack out of nowhere, and Ray has to leave her there to go slowly crazy while he's dealing with all this other stuff; Lena gets her free before Abby turns up and -- motivated by a pushy life coach's prying questions -- discovers a lot of strange facts about Ray's home away from home. While it's nice to see Lena klonk the shit out of Ashley after so many irritating scenes of her being nuts and creepy, it's that amount of not-nice to see Ray, losing his mind between the FBI investigation and this news about Ezra, finally give in to her wiles.
Bunchy spends his settlement check on a bike and a sketchy new house, where he and Mickey can set up shop for the second half of the season, while Terry's romantic bliss with Nurse Frances is short-lived, as he discovers she's actually married with kids of her own. (These things are all very, very sad.)
Oh, and speaking of sad, Ray heads out to Compton to pick up MGW's paperwork, discovering (and abandoning) the crackhead mother's corpse in order to secure Drexel's bloodstained adoption paperwork. Also in work news, he brings the ugly divorce we saw being investigated last week (the face-scratch lady) to a quick close with some well-timed menace. Actually, it was one of his best workdays ever, if you discount the chilling effect it's having on his humanity, which I guess is what the episode title's actually referring to.
In the end, Ray makes it back to his apartment in time for a quick breakdown, which is immediately interrupted by old Abby, who is just hanging around waiting to pounce on him for answers -- while back home, MGW is getting the Donovan kids trashed like some kind of postmodern Pippi Longstocking. All in all, a record-bustingly trainwreck day for everyone on the show. Except Lena, of course, who is flawless and barely-there as ever.
Next Week: It looks like Ray gets ahold of Van Miller, which should not go well for any of them. Ray decrees that no Donovan shall darken the doorstep of Bunchy's new house, so of course they all end up there immediately. And it looks like Bunchy starts setting fires? In the end, Ray confronts his father again, but this time it's where the whole family can see them. I don't see Ray getting back in anybody's good graces any time soon...
Abby was on her best (if mortifying) behavior visiting a new school, while Ray did his best to keep a work/life balance by only getting slightly carved up while doing his job. In the end, it was Connor's relationship with Tommy Wheeler that Stu Feldman's crummy kid used to get him -- and the while family -- kicked out of consideration for the academy. Meanwhile Mickey took Bunchy and Daryll to visit Claudette in Palm Springs, knitting their little family-of-three closer than ever, and Terry's first date with Frances went relatively well, despite his greatest efforts to sink it. More previously, Ezra's going nuts -- everybody knows it, Mickey's helping -- and Ray got a blowjob from a crazy girl.
I'm presuming. It's very winding and woodsy. Ezra drives very intensely, listening to his old man music, and seems very intent on the road and focusing on the task at hand. Which makes it all the more ironic when a man appears out of nowhere and gets run over by poor old Ezra.
Avi feels very bad, over his breakfast, about whatever mysterious wrench was thrown into their plan to make sure Mickey's priest assassination gets him put back in jail.
Ray: "I mean, we paid that guy Eddie in Boston a lot of money to make sure."
Avi: "I know! I watched him go into the police station, he made the ID, everything was perfect!"
Ray: "And yet."
Avi: "Oh, here's a picture of him meeting with Van Miller. A man who does not exist on any books or systems available to me."
Ray: "He seems moderately legit, not like one of Mickey's lowlife buddies. I wonder if he has anything to do with Mickey's total murder of a person going away."
Avi: "I guess it would be my job to figure that out, huh?"
Ray's in the car for a good nine seconds before, of course, his phone rings: Ezra is missing and Lee is all manner of perturbed about it.
Ray: "What makes you think he'll answer the phone for me, if not you?"
Lee: "Don't be a joker. I know everybody hates me. Just find him."
Ray: "I guess it's not really a distraction from the task at hand, considering Ezra's all tied up in the original framing that sent Mickey away, and is at the top of Mickey's revenge list. I guess I can see it that way."
Abby: "Of all the human weaknesses, I hate sleep the most. Six to eight hours a day of not bitching at anybody? What a goddamn waste. Where is your father, I need to get started on bitching. I've got six to eight hours to make up."