The first shocker in this episode is that it actually aired.
The Viva has opened and it's not doing well. Ripley assures Jonesy, the accountant, that they'll be fine. What they need is a "whale" -- a high-roller pro gambler who will attract other gamblers to the Viva. They decide to poach the whale at Nicky Fontana's casino, Lenny Collins. He comes to the Viva and wins over half a million dollars, which almost gives Jonesy a coronary. Later, we find out that it was all an act and Lenny was paying back a favor to Ripley, who we also discover is an ex-con.
Cheyenne moves out because she found out that Ripley punched her professor boyfriend. Jack finds a HIDDEN gun in the garage, which he then hides in his car. He goes to a beach party with Cheyenne and gets his ass handed to him after defending her honor.
Peter narrows the persons of interest in the Buddy Baxter murder to Bunny, Jonesy, Natalie (?), Nicky Fontana, and Ripley. He finds out that a phone call was made from Buddy's phone to Ripley on the night of Buddy's murder, and confronts Ripley with this information. Ripley says that Buddy called him to ask him to go fishing. I know.
Peter goes to the crisis center, presumably to try to suss out if Natalie is lying for Ripley about his whereabouts on the night of Buddy's murder. Instead, the flirtation between them is ramped up. Ultimately, he volunteers at the center.
Buddy's will is read and he leaves everything to his daughter, Geneva (played by Taryn "BoomKat" Manning), whose previous existence was unknown to Bunny. Armando, Buddy's lawyer, tells Bunny that she shouldn't contest the will, because he knows about something that happened with Bunny and Buddy the night of his murder (also the night he changed his will to exclude her) that she wouldn't want made public. Geneva tells Bunny that she wants to live with her. And there was singing.
Previously: Buddy Baxter pulled out the 25 percent funding that he had promised to Ripley Holden for his new casino The Viva, then was promptly killed. Buddy's wife and Ripley's former mistress, Bunny, suggested that Ripley might be the killer. I guess we're supposed to believe that maybe he did it too. Peter Carlyle, the police detective assigned to Buddy Baxter's murder, is focusing on Ripley's wife Natalie -- he thinks she'll have info about Ripley's whereabouts the night of the murder. He also wants to sing sweet love to her. Ripley won a million dollars at his rival Nicky Fontana's casino and was able to open The Viva.
Natalie picks up The Laughlin Nevada Times and finds, on the front page, an article entitled "Viva craps out" by Thomas Hoffarth, a name I find endlessly amusing. "Hoffarth" is funny. Now I'm gonna pose a question to all of you dear, tortured readers: Say you are making a TV program in any one of the past 25 or so years, and you have a moment where a piece of written word, whether it be a newspaper article, a theatre playbill, a menu, et cetera is used onscreen -- wouldn't you make sure that everything propagated the illusion that you, the maker of the TV program, were trying to create? Because, not only do we live in the era of DVR, we have already buried the storied era of the freaking VCR. WE CAN PAUSE IF WE WANT TO. Now, I'm not trying to be a total asshole and I know it's a small thing, but the article they flash to? Well, there are like three sentences about how The Viva opened two days earlier and should be named "The Crash and Burn" because that's how bad it is. Of course, nothing that describes why it's bad and, as a person who has only been to a few casinos and finds them all fairly uniform, it would be interesting to know what could really just fuck up a casino. After a short description of The Crash and Burn, the sentences that follow are from an entirely different article. This article. While I'm glad to have learned about the problems with maintaining the relevance of Laughlin high school athletics, it just bespeaks a kind of laziness or just plain stupidity that someone couldn't have created like three more sentences for the fake article. Instead, they spend their time thinking up gems like, "The heart is a tricky organ. Not only does it beat, it also falls. Sometimes in the wrong direction." Anyway, so no one has spoken yet and already this sucks.
Jack is having breakfast when Natalie comes in with the paper, and he asks her what it says. She reads something that wasn't even in the three fake sentences that we saw on the paper. Really, I know this is fairly nitpicky, but COME ON. In the article that Natalie is making up because it's not really in the paper, there is a mention of Ripley being under investigation for the murder of Buddy Baxter. Jack mumbles that it's all over the internets that The Viva is bad luck. I'm sure they were a-buzz.