Billions (2016–…): Season 5, Episode 6 - The Nordic Model - full transcript

Axe's plans are threatened when an old scheme resurfaces. Chuck wages war on a new front, but a dangerous gambit tests his budding relationship. Taylor looks to make an impact in an emerging field.

on Billions...

You guys here...

Bobby Axelrod's
spare fucking apartment.

With goddamned Van Goghs
on the walls.

I can house your paintings
in a permanent tax-free state.

I'll store replicas,
so you can hang the originals.

Hey. One other thing
you can help me with.

You know my new artist...

- Yeah.
- He's not working.

You know what?
Let me talk to him.

I'll see
what occurs.

What's on your mind?
Bobby Axelrod.

Specifically, an application
he submitted for a bank charter.

We would like you
to stall the approval.

And then deny it.

Dad. What happened?
What's wrong?

Nothing to worry about.

His kidneys.
Renal failure.

How serious are
we talking here?

They think he'll need a
kidney transplant in order to...


Fuck me...

You and me both...

Who's gonna go try
and persuade 'em to walk away?

Lucky for me,
I was sleeping on my good side.

I rolled you over.


You... uh...

that's good.
You got me.

Don't do that.


Figure drawing,
it's art school "technique."


It's like a rock band
doing a cover song.

I love a good cover.

You kind of can't beat

Manfred Mann's version
of "Blinded by the Light."

Yeah, well, you don't remember
anything else they did.

Well, I love this.

For what it reveals
about how you see me.

For what it reveals
about us.

I want to keep it.

I-I don't, um, want this stuff
out in the world.

It won't be out in the world,
it'll be with me.

It feels like I'm the one who's
naked and under the covers.

That's why I want it.

I brought it out of you.

Now sign it...
and get back in here with me.

So Bobby Axelrod
wants to be a bank.

But before we can
ascend the heights,

we need your
beatific blessing.


So I am here as
his banking sherpa.

To guide him through
the craggy terrain

of the approval process.

Not least because of
the close relationship

you and I have,
Madame Chairwoman.

Madame Chairwoman,
I need a letter from the SEC,

supporting my bank.

To allow me to fight
for consumers

the way that I fight
for my investors.

Like a ravening mountain lion.
Whose only prey is value.

Not according to the United
States government's prosecutors.

They say your prey is
the entire financial system.

And that when
you're done with it,

not even the buzzards can find
anything left on the bone.

I was targeted.
By a vengeful individual.

He pursued me publicly,

Oh, and wrongfully.

- Mm.
- And he lost.

His job. His standing.
His highest aspirations.

As people who line up
against me tend to.

And all the charges
were dropped.

Yeah, in the end,
the system worked.

As I have faith
it will now.

Yeah, but we regulators
aren't big on faith.

We look at the record.

That is why
Axe Cap plucked me

from your tender
regulatory bosom.

Wait. So you're why he deserves
a clean bill of health, Spyros?

You know how I intuitively
located every speck

of financial dirt when I was
in-house for you?

How I harvested them
and laid them at your feet,

winning the title
'Mr. Roomba?'

Well, I have brought
these skills to Axe Cap

and vacuum cleaned
every crevice.

We called you Mr. Roomba
because you sucked.

And snuck up on us.
And creeped us out.

Haha, I certainly miss
the jocular banter...

And I see that you're still
parading around

in that knockoff
Mensa pin.

I had wondered why you
were suddenly sporting that.

Was that your gimmick
at the SEC?

You're a mountebank
Mensa member...

I can assure you, this is...
This is very real...

Do you know why
they formed the Stock Exchange?

To keep out a crook,
a market manipulator.

William Duer.

Gave us our first panic
in 1792.

But I guess you feel that
we could have skipped the effort

if we had you
and your hoovering skills.

Look, I would, uh, gladly
smash in Spyros's head

with the Stock Exchange gavel
if that'd make you feel better...

Wouldn't make me
feel worse...

But this isn't about him.

This is about the bank
that I'm trying to build.

The difference it will make
to our industry,

to the economy.

You want to talk about why
they really formed the Exchange?

It was a club,
not a cleanup.

A bunch of Francophiles
with mops on their heads,

who gave themselves
the sole right to trade...

At a commission
that they set.

What we call price-fixing
these days.

That's the gang
that you're part of.

Now, I hate clubs, but if I have
to join one, I make it better.

And I make the clubhouse

And that's why you want
to give me this letter.

Sure, I'll write it myself.

On behalf of my 'gang.'

But it will warn the FDIC
and the Federal Reserve

that you have been
a regulatory armageddon.

Doesn't take a Mensa member
to see that they'd be crazy

to grant you a goddamned
bank charter.


Did the SEC bless you
like a newborn?

Are we a bank?
We saw the Chairwoman leave

and have been waiting
to see you ever since.

I want my mahogany desk.

Settle for some
fucking plywood.

One word: Spyros.

Second word:

You blow the hunt, you don't get
to escape back to the cave.

Just an opening salvo,
we can find our way into...

Bad enough to wear this
if it were real.

But a fucking fugazi?

I would have
passed the test...

Oh, my God.
...if I had had time to take it.

You actually want people to
think you're in Mensa?

Oh, Spyros, you should
really work on this.

Alright. Enough.

The world is arrayed
against us right now.

Against me.

I want to know what the rest of
you can do to show your value...

Either by outperforming
or changing our footprint

to help make
this bank happen.

You better have
some fucking answers

the next time I ask...

Because silence will not
be acceptable then.

There's an opportunity here.

To give Axe what
his own team can't.

They're distracted

between becoming a bank
and earning and...

We show him we are
where he should

put his investable cash...
Not into some bank.

We make more money
as he makes more.

We earn his loyalty, too.

That's not a trio that should
be seen together

unless something's
seriously fucked.

It seems the liberty of
our tax haven is threatened.

We got
a painting problem.

Hey, hey, hey!

You have a right to inspect,
not to remove.

Gotta get it out the box
to see what it is.

Well, will you wrap your meat
hooks with some kid gloves?

These are priceless
works of art.

If they are damaged
even in the slightest,

an entire generation
of youth

would be robbed of
the joy of their beauty.

Perhaps we can come to
an agreeable accommodation...

for the children.

For your children.

They didn't want money
in their pockets.

Most dangerous thing
in the world:

government employees
who don't hate their jobs

enough to take a bribe.

Doesn't seem to me like
a random fucking search.

Seems like it's targeted.

How did they even know
to go art hunting?

Axe-associate Danny Margolis
is something of a promoter.

This time it was him
trying to sell billionaires

on parking their paintings
with him, tax free.

You're saying he's using
Bobby Axelrod

as his celebrity

Along those lines.

That's the inventory.

We could go after
the whole concept,

try to get him
on tax fraud.

Something poetic about taking
him down the same way as Capone.

But the laws on
freeports are murky.

It's too much
of a gamble...

I can't have us bring a case
just to have freeports upheld.

But this...

I see actual fraud here.

Van Gogh.
What about it?

I'm fairly certain
I've seen this painting,

up close, in one of
Axe's apartments.

Standard rich folk practice
is often to store the original

and hang a replica.

There's a feeling you get
when you're in the presence

of the real thing,
a work for the ages.

There's a weight to it,
you know?

I do.
You felt that?

I did.

I didn't like it at the time.
But I'm starting to now.

So how can one painting
be in two places at once?

It's my bad.

I thought it was a business
could be grown.

Not just your bad.

I brought you into this.

I brought you into this.

If it was a business could be
grown and there's extra cream,

you're not the only one
who should wind up

light and sweet, fucko.

Alright. Let's not catalogue
all the internecine ways

you've fucked me
and each other.

I'm cataloguing.

The replicas are
in the freeport.

They can't be there
when someone

who actually knows about art
comes back.

In theory,
the paintings in a freeport

are meant to
keep circulating.

Port to port.
That's how you avoid taxation.

Sort of like
the Stones in '72.

Good. Well, then let's make that
international tour a reality.

The real ones can't be
back in my place.

I need to get with Hall
and disappear them.


You want a value multiplier,
it is one.

What does it do?

What you need it to:
brings us back to the future.

And brings us um,
like, filthy lucre.

That's like what you guys
would say right?

Instead of just: "We can make a
good percentage on our money."

You'd say: "Grab some filthy
dirty lucre" or something?

Anyway, this is
a way to do that.

What does it
actually do?

Harvests methane bubbling
to the ocean surface.

Whale farts? Please tell me
we're talking about whale farts.

Cracks in the seafloor.

How did you find it?

I built a toy,
a social media scraper.

Analyzes the online behaviors
of leading VCs.

Basically, it tracks who they
suddenly decide to follow.

Interest in Marithane
is hockey-sticking.

Competition will be real.

We should
get in there fast.

Lauren, set the pitch.


Auspicious timing.

I was about to call you

to contact your doorman
to let me in.

Now you can just do it.

For the purpose of?

Oh, Kevin left his Nintendo
thing in your apartment.

He really wants it
for tonight.

Mind if I go up
and rummage around?

Oh, Chuck.

Must be going for shared-custody
father of the year.

Since you dropped

in the middle of the day,
to find a doll.

Oh. Not a doll.

And you know
from separations.

It's as if you've forced your
kids to live in a gypsy caravan.

Least I can do is
recover the missing item.

Or buy two
of everything.


Is this
a Chateau Haut-Brion?

It is. 2010.

Not normally
a day drinker.

But I've always wanted
to taste this vintage.

King of wines,
wine of kings...

Why it's my house red.

Would you mind
spotting me a taste?

Alright, Chuck...

I'll keep looking for the game
if that's okay.

Yeah, I'll, uh, check the
bedroom he uses... in a minute.


If it isn't
the Dutch master himself.

"Noon - Rest From Work."

Hard to believe
it's in private hands.

You know what I believe
Van Gogh is telling us?


Time to get back
to our own work.

You know, it's hard to imagine
living with a piece like this.

I mean,
I'm sure you're aware of

the forty-million-
dollar elbow...

When Steve Wynn was selling it
to Steve Cohen

and accidentally poked a new
nostril in Picasso's "La Rêve."

Yeah. Well aware.

Both Steves felt bad
about that one.

And of course this one's worth

a fuck of a lot more than forty.

Which is why
I only hang replicas.

Oh. I'd do the same.

Since I'm all elbows.


Fucking clumsy of me...

But why so protective
of a replica, Bob?

I'm happy to wipe it off.

Guess it... Guess it
almost seems real to me.

I should probably move them...
Move them all out of here,

to a place where there's
no risk of clumsy guests.

I like to pretend too.

You know, right now
I'm pretending

I got guys downstairs,

watching everything
come in and out,

all night long
if I have to.

Well, that is
a truly profound Brion.

But you're right:
time to get back to work.

Oh, and, uh, let me know
if that game ever turns up.

Hey. Where are you?
I got a major fucking problem.

Rhoades. I know.
He moved first and fast.

Looking at options.

Well, send me a restoration
and cleaning crew, now...

A Seurat, a Degas,
multiple Van Goghs,

all on the
fucking manifest...

Don't tell me that lucky bastard
has a Bob Ross, too,

or I'll really
hate on the guy.

Keep a watch on the building...
Front, back, and side doors.

Nothing in or out.
And you know your part.

Yep. Get a subpoena,

so we can have
an authenticator

test the fuck out
of those canvases.

We prove they're real, we nail
Bobby Axelrod on tax fraud.

Like an elbow through
the bank charter

he's undoubtedly
still pursuing.

That'll make me warm and tingly
in all the places.

Really will, Karl.
Really will.

I'm surprised by
the aggressiveness

of the sudden interest
in our company.

It's warranted, but leaves me
with almost too much choice.

We are here to
alleviate that burden.

You need a partner, to help
with your hardware expenses.

Each ship is like
a startup of its own.

And with this much methane,
there's always a chance that...

One of them could go up
like a Molotov Cocktail?


We can provide you cash.

But looking at you, I sense
you need more than that.

You need... what is it,

the thing
you're not saying,

the thing at the corner
of your mind?

That would bring you
some ease.

What will help you,
the human being, be your best.

How can we be that
for you right now?

No one's asked that.

Let us do more than
feel your pain.

I am having an issue.

A former employee walked out the
door with a piece of our tech.

I don't want to sue...

The bad press
and expense.

But he's out there with my tech.

You need him knocked
out of the game...

Excuse me.

You next?
I am.

Still prize efficiency?
You know I do.

Then come with me.

No reason not to do
a head-to-head.

Old friends here.
We might as well pitch together.

In fact, I can even
do Oscar's pitch for him...

I'm not saying the world's
divided into makers and takers.

I'm just saying:
I'm a maker.

A product guy.

I've been in your shoes.

It can be scary.

And you're right
to be scared.

There are bad people,
like Bobby Axelrod, out there.

And he corrupts
everything he touches.

Including Taylor Mason.

Did I miss anything?

My charm?

I have missed that.

But no one spends more money
on green tech than big energy.

They have the resources,
the market is compelling them

to evolve, and yeah...

In many cases they've broken
the window needs fixing.

But Axe Cap has deep investments
and influence with them.

So what Oscar would call
corrupting influence,

I call the strategic

that will take you
to tomorrow.

Well, um,
that was compelling.

I apologize.
I didn't come prepared for this.

But I will be prepared
going forward.

Not really what they want to
hear from their VC, is it?

You know, I don't mind the
pinch, but I don't like looking.

Why is that?

It represents your life force
flowing out.

Thank you.

Taking it
to the lab now.

We should have results for you
by end of day.

I don't want to do this.

You do.
You're honored.

Replace the blanks
in this sentence

with two three-letter words
made from the same letters:

"The woman decided to
blank the beast where he lay

rather than
blank him home."

She decided to blank...

it's a three-letter word?

Yeah, like this one:

F-U-K off so we can
all get back to work.

The words are gut and tug.

The questions are biased.

How are they biased?

You're asking them
in a biased way.

You know the answer...
or you don't.

I know the answers
to questions

that you haven't
even thought of yet.


Just hit me with another

If FL=6 and HX=15,
what does ES equal?


That's right.

It's a conspiracy.

Actually it's just
the numbers of places

between the letters
in the alphabet.

I cannot achieve genius
surrounded by jealousy.

You know
we have a problem.

He failed the SEC meeting.

He's doomed to fail
the Mensa exam.

In another man,
this double ego bruise

might induce self-examination
or humility, but...

He's gonna lash out!

He'll red-flag
all our trades

like the insecure,
vindictive douche he is.

Maybe he'll pass.

Maybe we're all just
underestimating him.

No, I've been
quizzing him all day.

We're properly
estimating him.

Thought you should know,
your ex is using your kids

as pretext to
tear apart my property

like Keith Moon
at a Holiday Inn.

The thing about him
being my ex?

I don't need to apologize
for him anymore.

Someone else's past is a thorn
in our side right now.

Oscar Langstraat.

He's getting in the way of
Mase Carbon's latest play.

How's Taylor responding?

They seem ready to stomp him
like Big John Studd.

This happen to be
a Nico Tanner original?

Signed, no less.

You pose for this,
or was it from memory?

Why don't you call him
and ask?

No, it's just it's the first
work I've seen of his

since I helped set up
his whole new life.

Now I know why he's been
so distracted...

You're about to get
bounced out of here.

Well, since you're in there,

maybe you can see when I can
expect some art out of him.

Something that looks a little
bit more like Implosion.

You aware of Wendy
and the artist?

As of now.

Let me worry about
all things painted.

While you focus on
getting that bank charter.

Mm. Good idea.
With one small adjustment.

I'll focus on the art
and the charter.

The freeport is
the fucking bank.

It's Chuck's way
of blocking it.

If I'm hit with tax charges,

you think the SEC
will ever come around?

They're not coming
around now.

Unless someone
forces them to.

Krakow already
shook us off.

Well this time
we're tightening the rope

and digging in the spurs.

Anyone could have
designed that toy.

But anyone didn't.
You didn't.

Too simplistic.

Microchip was simple;
pasteurization too.

Both changed the world.

Not always about the degree
of technical difficulty,

sometimes it's about
insight and initiative.

No to the duh.

I showed that shit
when I figured out

how to dump Mase Cap out of
non-green investments.

Oh, so this is a workplace

where it's cool if
you just bring it once?

I thought the idea was
to bring it every day.

Uh huh.

Yeah. So there's no chance
that I'm a...


Thank you for
letting me know.

I'm not a match.

For Senior.


And why the hell aren't you
outside Axe's?

I got the McCluskey visit.

Pulled me from sitting on
the Don at the hospital.

Did everything short
of busting my jaw.

Who pulled you?
New York's finest.

Showed me paper and everything.



Sorry about your blood.


You heard?

That you inserted yourself
into my fucking case?

Wanted you to get the
particulars straight from me.

The Axelrod tax fraud case
is mine.

That's criminal behavior
in Manhattan.

Literally my dominion.

The case straddles
the line.

So you applied
for a subpoena...

Mm-hmm. Before you did.

And I got it.
What does that tell you?

You are well-connected
at the courthouse.

And backed
by the governor.

Maybe this is the rare case
we could collaborate on?

I don't need your Axelrod
hard-on accidentally poking me.

I don't need you at all.

The apartment is now
secured by NYPD.

The art authenticator's
coming in from Boston tomorrow.

But, hey, I'm just handling
the criminal case.

As always, Chuck, you are free
to follow up on any civil angle.

That looks like a woman
who just took from us.

Ah. You look like a woman
who's gonna help me take back.

We need to find a way
to leverage Gramm.

Get her to leave Axe to me.

Looking for something

Let's start there.

I'm off to see
Charles Senior.

My best to the old man.

That is what he demands.

I'm happy to keep you company.
But shouldn't your wife...

There are no women
in the house.

I sent Roxanne to her people
until I get my strength back.

She married a virile bull,
not an invalid.

She loves you.

She can look at you
and see you.

Love only makes
the weak blind.

The staunch see with
striking clarity.


That must be why Sonny Crockett
always wore those shades, huh?

Listen, Dad, uh,

Since the family has been
more inclusive of late,

now might be a good time
to reach out

to any previously
unreported bastards.

Just welcome them into
the ever-growing fold.

What bastards?

There are
no such issue.

Comments like that
are how rumors get started.

And inheritances
get diluted.

Ah, shit.

You're not a match,
are you?

I'm not. No.

Yeah. Of course you don't have
my blood flowing in your veins.

If you did, you'd be
goddamned President by now.

Or the fucking Pope.

No, your arteries must be
filled with the same

watery gruel as your mother's
pinhead brother.

That's not okay to say about
somebody with microcephaly.

Or maybe anybody ever.

Do you know they... they used to
have a rating system

for mental infirmity?

We're all too polite
for it now.

But that list told it
like it goddamned was.

A cretin was without a thought
in their head.

An idiot had the intellect
of a two-year-old child.

An average imbecile
got up to seven.

And a moron
could be as clever

as a feeble-minded

You pick
your fucking title.

Good talk, Dad.

I'm sorry you're scared.

I'm sorry I didn't match.

And, uh,

I'm sorry for insinuating
there are bastards.

They didn't match either.

The D.A.'s subpoena

that none of the art can be
moved until it's tested.

Can we move
the prosecutor?

Gramm's immovable.

She made that clear over
our first plate of plantains.

Who will she use
to authenticate?

The NYPD prefer
a fellow named Hemlock.

They say the man can
smell pigments.

They retained him
on this case.

The aesthete will
be here tomorrow.

At which point
he'll authenticate

the canvases
in your apartment.

At which point
I'll be fucked.

Is it too late
to pay the taxes?

Oh, come on...

I'm just...
Goodness, what a question...

Yes. Even if I were willing.
Which I'm not.

I've got an idea.

Orrin, that's your cue
to get the fuck out of here.

My wife, my third house,
and my law license thank you.

If only Bruce Cutler had
a friend like Bobby Axelrod.

What if we get Biblical.

That Old Testament,
Hebrew lightning.


To smoke 18 canvases
across six thousand square feet,

even if I can hide the origin,
make it look electrical...

we'd be taking out
the whole unit,

maybe half the building.

Well. That's a wide
fucking range.

I can't make the fire
big enough to do the job

and small enough
to be easily contained.

Then there's the variable
of the firefighters.

Will they get hurt?
Will others?

Not hurting
any firefighters.

Or destroying
all that beauty.

Oh. That, too.

Houdini's Water Torture.

He was chained up in a locked
box filled with water.

We use the same move
on the paintings

that he used to escape?

Wait, uh, didn't he die
in that box?

Yes, which is
where you're going

unless you figure out
a way to fix this.


who else did you
pitch the freeport to?


Axe, if it were up to me, you'd
have ATMs in every ass crack.

But the SEC is
an independent agency.

One that hates meddling,
loves leaking to the press.


This is the kind of thing
that leads to hearings,

public thrashing,

I need to be careful.

As careful as you've been
storing your Frank Stellas?

Where is all your art,
by the way?

I don't see
much of it here...

Margolis gave me a tip
about your freeport.

I assumed
he gave you a taste...

Yeah. I don't care
about any of that. Not today.

But I should tell you,

there is gonna be
a freeport crackdown...



That's gonna cost me stacks.

Fucking IRS.

They have no respect
for authority.

You got a workaround?

Not at the moment.

But I can help you
offset your loss

by augmenting
your collection.

You willing to part with
something from your own?

I can do you one better.

Get you a one-off,
a singular commission

that's worthy
of your greatness.

A portrait?

Nico Tanner,
first and only.

Mm. He's gotten hot thanks
to you and Mike Prince.

Didn't know Tanner did
representational work.

Ah. Few have seen it.

But I happen to know
it's good.

Fucking great, actually.

But I need you to rip a letter
on my behalf out of the SEC

and grease the skids
to a charter.

For the original glamor shot?

But none of that
Cubist bullshit.

I don't want my left eyeball
next to my nutsack.

How am I back here again?

My guess:
You need something again.

Yes, for my father.

For you to take
a blood test.

To see if
you're a match.

What's the point,

Oh, none really,
just saving a man's life.

What could be more pointless
than that?

Even if I am
the right blood type,

and then the right tissue type,
and then I cross-match,

and then a team of nephrologists
green-flags me onto the track,

your father's not
getting my kidney.

I'm hanging onto them in case
our kids or my family need one.

Do you know
our kids' blood types?

Don't even fucking
think about it.

You see that?

You are still the only one

that actively stops me
from turning into him.

You'll never be him.

Yeah. I used to be sure
that was a good thing.

The reason I didn't
measure up to my father

was 'cause
I didn't want to.

Good. He's warped.

Yeah? Is he?

I look around now
and he's the one who's happy.

He's the one surrounded
by loving family.

Maybe the reason
I didn't measure up...

is because I couldn't.

I was too different.

On a cellular level, I was
a different and lesser man.

I'll hand it to him:

He wired you in a way

even I could never
quite untangle.

You're racked with guilt.

I can't help him.

Or because
you don't want to.

Wait. You think that
I want him to die?

I think, maybe,
you need him to.

Where should we begin?

From the way he let your uncle
'make a man of you, '

to the way he let you know
he'd tried her too.

Yeah. The hooker?

The sex worker. Yes.

That's what we must
call them now?

I'm not gonna get into
the semantics

of this
with you right now.

Ask your colleagues who are
trying to make that fact law.

Or your girlfriend.

She's a renowned expert.

I need your library.

Thank you.

Is this
for your class?

Uh, no.
It's for yours.

The one you're about
to teach me.

On prostitution.

Sex work.

Call it sex work,
because that's what it is, work.


Prostitution suggests
something criminal,

immoral... deviant.

Why the hell
isn't it deviant?

Come at me.


Are you bringing
a case on this?

No. It's more that
the, uh, D.A. isn't.

She's quietly pushing

Good for her.

The Nordic Model is doing
great things to decrease stigma,


Why should the workers be
punished and not the patrons?

Yes, that's the stuff.

Make your best argument...
and then help me shred it.

I don't like this game.

This is my life's work.

I'm... I'm well aware
it's not a game.

I need the D.A.
off my turf.

That may require
trampling on hers.

Have you ever even met
a sex worker?

A long time ago,
my father...

I don't want to
get into it.

Just, please, help me argue
that the D.A. is hurting women.

When she's not?

You get to shift
the Overton Window,

and sex workers can just
fall off the fucking ledge?

Cat. I could have come here
and lied about my motives...

but I didn't.

I was honest.

That's new for me.

Well, then be honest
about this:

Are you going to crack down,
or is this really just a threat?

Yes. Of course
it's just a threat...

which I have to mean.

Otherwise it's not
a very good threat.

Then I have to mean
this one, too:

You can threaten the D.A.,

but if you make good
on that threat,

your library privileges
will be revoked.

Along with all
the other privileges.



Read my book.

I blew your number out of
the water on Marithane.

2x'd you.

That's an overpay.

A substantial overpay.

In part to help cover the costs
of their patent issue...

but mainly to make
a fucking point.

To you...

You'll do this every time
we go head-to-head.

It's my new mission.

This isn't how you
normally do business.

Or speak.

You're exceptional.

You merited
an exception.

I have learned, in dealing with
people, to be disarming.

I smile, I'm polite,
because I was loved as a child

and am genuinely
a decent human being.

But somewhere during
my early Oakland days,

I built an affinity for
the silver and black.

The Raiders.

So when I'm in...
It's win, baby, win...

And when we don't,

we beat the shit out of
the opposing fans.

Don't make me
do that to you.

Liquid courage,
don't fail me now.

It's like we're all
being tested.

For a horrible disease.

Oscar went over-the-top.
I can't outspend him.

He has an open lane to the hoop
on Marithane.

Rather he bought
himself one.


I need your help.

If he overpays his way
to victory every time...

Which he damn well
can afford to...

Then our burgeoning enterprise
is finished.

What kind of help
are you looking for...

Emotional, personal...

The Axe kind.
How would you load Axe up

to deal with
an existential threat?

I wouldn't need to.

He registers all threats
as existential.

So I either try to stop him
or at least

point him away
from civilians.

How can I approach this like Axe
without becoming him?

Never known anyone to put on the
suit without it changing them.

But if anyone can,
I suppose it's you...

Model the will,
the aggression...

But temper it with your own
fundamental advantage.

A moral compass?

The ability to accurately weigh
reward vs. jail time.

You know what
you need now?

I need Hard Bob.

That's a tight
flight time.

He's a tight flyer.

But the imprecision
of the shift change...

Maybe that's where
our boys come in.

I have not felt this excited
to be part of something

since I donned a girdle
for the 124th Edition

of the Hasty Pudding

I've seen the pictures.

The paperwork's ready
to be filed, yes?

It's great fucking pie.

But I know you just
didn't want company.

True dat, double true,
as the wise men once said.

I need you to
paint something for me.

I thought that's
what I was doing.

Yeah. A little fucking slowly,
by the way.

But this is different.

A portrait of the sitting
Treasury Secretary.

Come on, man. I-I don't...
I don't do portraits.

Well, I think we both
know otherwise.

I've seen otherwise.

♪ You're so nice ♪

Right. Yeah.
Well, that was nothing.

And it's none
of your business.

Eh, well, your 'nothing'
is world-class,

and it's more than good enough
for Todd Krakow.

Who's that?

He signs your money,
now you get to sign him.

Which'll get you even more
copies of his signature.


Hey, Anthony.

So, I'm sitting over there,
eating with one artist,

and I'm thinking to myself,

"My favorite artist
isn't getting paid enough."

I'm talking about you.

No. I'm fine.

Your pizza, Anthony,

is way too good for only
the hundred or so people

who are lucky enough
to get in here every night.

And what about
the people who can't?

What about the ones who can't
get into New York?

Shouldn't they have
some of this, too?

I agree.

Who are you?

Call me Manz.
I'm Anthony's cousin.

Business manager.

What do you
got in mind?

The freezer section.
We start there.

Best frozen pie ever.

Then sauce.

We roll out
the complete line.

The whole Una food experience...
But at home.

But if you're
his business manager,

why don't you have him
going in this already?

'Ey I tried. I got him to
open up a second location.

You know just this business
or you know business?

Graduated Stern.
4.2 weighted.

What's in it for you?

We partner.

I stake it.

This gets big and we get bought
by a major conglomerate.

It'll be what they call
a 'liquidity event.'

Because people like
your cousin here...

The best in the world
at what they do...

Deserve to get rich.

And I'm here to
make that happen.

I like it.

And I've got some ideas.



We'll be talking.

Happy to be joining
the Langstraat family.

There's a hole in the universe
where Alderaan used to be.

As if millions of voices
suddenly cried out in terror.

What did you do?

You have
your patent back.

And your employee...
if you want him.

Which is a gift I am giving you,
whether I'm your VC or not.

I'm confident
he'll be a good boy now.

Can I help you?

I'm Hard Bob Beaufort,

from the Bureau of
Industry and Security.

I understand you're something
of a bullshitter.

And I brook no bullshit.

Oscar, I'm sorry.
How do you not go with

someone willing to
do that for you?

Well, because if they're willing
to do that for you today,

they're willing to
do it to you later.

But that's not something
you can hear from me.

You'll just have to learn that
for yourself.

Al Davis is dead.

And the Raiders haven't won
anything in a decade.

So go back to the bay.
And heal, baby, heal.

Madam D.A.
Enjoy your dumplings.

Thank you.

Ah, yes, the famed
Red Farm Pac-Man dumplings.

Fitting for someone who
gobbles up my cases.

Your cases are
almost as delicious.

Which is why
I want this one back.

No chance.

Let's see if
I can shift your thinking.


My number one priority as
the State's top law man

is now fighting the scourge of
what you like to call sex work...

But which
I am going to link,

very publicly,
to sex trafficking.

Human bondage.

And I will make it look like
I'm stepping up

because you failed to.

Trying to scam the optics.

I don't give a fuck about the
people keeping score at home.

But you do care
about the women.

I mean, sure, a few men,
but mainly women.

And, of course, children.

You care
about what happens

when they're placed
in the system.

You care about them
dealing with the incarceration,

the stigma,

the damage.

'Cause that's what
I'm gonna do to 'em:

incarcerate them,
stigmatize them

and fucking damage them.

Do you see this urchin?

Her ID says her name is Inge
and she's 18.

I promise you,
she's far younger than that...

And I have no idea
what she calls herself.

I do know that not long after
she reached these shores

and this city, she found her way
to a massage parlor.

Where she was caught up in
a sting, under your watch.

You let her go.
And you know what happened?

She flourished.
At this very moment,

she's working towards
her high school diploma.

What do you think happens
to the next Inge...

under my watch?

I may have misjudged you.

Thought you had a limit
on how you use your power.

No. When it comes to the
particular agenda I am pursuing,

I will do it
Rudy Giuliani-style.

I will prosecute
with a crazy eye

and absolutely no
sense of boundaries.

Besides, I didn't put
these women in this place.

They put their own lives
up for sale.

And now those lives
hang in the balance.

Will you ransom them back?

Or will you place
Dutch paintings

and Scandinavian values
above the life

and liberty of
women most at risk?

Wow, Chuck.


Taking the missiles
out of Havana.

You can have
your fucking art case.

Thank you.

Mmm. Delicious.

Enjoy your
noonday repast.

Uh, hold up.

clear out, boys.

Get ready
to authenticate.

Mr. Rhoades,
I was born ready.

Like Eliot Ness
with an MFA.

I have a PhD.

Well. Get ready to shove it
up Axelrod's...

Another midday drop-by.

I'd say you were
wasting my taxes.

If I didn't have such giant
fucking deductions.

The fuck is
this bacchanalia?

Just a little
day drinking.

I'm afraid these paintings
no longer belong to Mr. Axelrod.

They're hanging in
his apartment.

Actually, this is no longer
a private residence at all.

Your family foundation.
You didn't...

These works,
every impeccable inch of them,

are now
the proud possession

of the Axelrod
Charitable Foundation.

Which maintains
and runs this museum.

It's a real feather
in our cap.


A private art museum...
for replicas.

Course not.

These are as real
as I am standing here.

And they got here,
how exactly?

We've been watching,
day and night.

I guess not every angle.


Don't make 'em
like they used to.

Fuck you!

Come back here!

Huh?! Come and get me!

Let's get him!

Let's go!

Go, go, go!

Come on!
Keep moving!

Got it.

Hurry up. Hurry up.

Okay, come on.

They're empty anyways.

You can check
the security footage

from the neighboring roofs.

Tough to move
paintings this big,

had to innovate.

Might be
facing an FAA fine.

But, oh, well.

I should have done the whole
museum thing many years ago.

Share the majesty instead of
hoarding it for myself.

And I want thank you, Chuck,
for the impetus...

and opportunity.

I need to take a closer
goddamned look...

But it will have to wait.

Museum hours are over
for the month.

Wonderful collection!

Thank you.

Let's get the fuck
out of here.


After Fischer
beat Spassky...

Reykjavik, '72...

He described his chief
moment of pleasure

as seeing his opponent's
ego break.

I want you to know,
as a newly-minted Mensan,

that I feel no need
to break you.

I see no Cold War
between us.

I always knew
you had it in you.

Should I intentionally
leave one or two wrong,

so he knows
he wasn't punked?

If he were thinking
that clearly,

he'd have
the real pin already.

It's a silly
little trinket.

Proves nothing, of course...

Besides the company of

Asimov, Carol Oates,
Geena Davis.

Well. I hardly need
to wear it...

Oh, you know what?

I will, why not...
In the name of learning!

And don't let this bauble,
this curio,

remind you of the yawning gap
between us.

But I will be mindful.

And I will be here.

As a mentor.

A teacher.

A guide.

I am never doing
another nice thing.

I say that every day.

But we are who we are.

How do I look?

Not great.


Two stopped-up urinals
in my gut,

if I get a compliment
I know I'm a fucking goner.

I had my blood typed.

We're not a match.

You did that for Chuck?

I did it
for your grandkids.

And for myself,
too, maybe.

Second worst thing about
dialysis, after the bedpans?

Turns everyone into
a goddamned Hallmark card.

People want to say what
they've been meaning to say.

How about:
Here's a fucking kidney?

All I've got is: They're doing
wonders with xenotransplants.

I'm a little rough
on my Greek.

Pig kidneys.

You're already

I don't see why you wouldn't
want a kidney to match.

I'd rather die.

You might.

One thing I know
about the Greeks,

the great tragedies

rarely featured
death scenes.

Plain left that shit

They just did not
find it interesting.


That's the real drama.

The real classroom.

Plenty of lessons
left to teach.

You're worried
about Willow.

Good God no.

She won't even remember me,

and she'll have
her mother

to fill her
full of whatever.

But Chuck...

if I'm not here

to push him,
to mold him,

who knows all the ways
he'll fuck himself up.

You got me there.

It got ugly.

I got ugly.

I went halfway
to Ed Exley.

Didn't know
I had it in me.

You won.

For the moment.

Did you make good
on your threat?


Would you have really
followed through, though?

It's possible
something inside me

would have caught,
backed down.

I truly don't know.

Would you have?


Which would have been

Because then

we couldn't
have enjoyed


Is, uh, this a reward,
or to teach me a lesson?



Whatever we want
to make of it.

Come on.

I'm sorry Axe saw it.

You know,
I didn't show it to him,

I didn't try to
show it to him anyway...

I know you meant no harm,
but harm is coming.

It's open!

♪ Bob Dylan's
"When I Paint My Masterpiece" ♪

I'm ready for
my close-up.

♪ Oh, the streets of Rome ♪

♪ Are filled with rubble ♪

♪ Ancient footprints ♪

♪ Are everywhere ♪

♪ You could almost think ♪

♪ That you're seeing double ♪

♪ On the cold, dark night ♪

♪ On the Spanish Stairs ♪

♪ Gotta hurry on back
to my hotel room ♪

♪ Where I got me a date ♪

♪ With a pretty little girl
from Greece ♪

♪ She promised
she'd be there with me ♪

♪ When I paint ♪

♪ My masterpiece ♪

♪ Oh, the hours we spent ♪

♪ Inside the Coliseum ♪

♪ Dodging lions ♪

♪ And a-wasting time ♪

♪ Oh, those mighty kings
of the jungle ♪

♪ I could hardly
stand to see 'em ♪

♪ Yes, it sure has been ♪

♪ A long hard drive ♪

♪ Train wheels
a-running through ♪

♪ The back of my memory ♪

♪ When I ran on the hilltop ♪

♪ Following a pack
of wild geese ♪

♪ Someday everything is gonna
sound like a rhapsody ♪


Hey. You know what,
we should all do dinner...

♪ When I paint
my masterpiece ♪

Me, you, Tanner.

Maybe I'll bring someone,


The art world's been
good to me lately.

It's gonna get me
my bank charter.

♪ In a dirty gondola ♪

I'd like to show
my appreciation.

♪ Oh, to be back in the land ♪

That'd... That'd be great.

♪ Of Coca-Cola ♪

♪ Well, I left Rome ♪

♪ And landed in Brussels ♪

♪ On a plane ride ♪

♪ So bumpy that I almost cried ♪

♪ Clergy men in uniform ♪

♪ And young girls
pulling mussels ♪

♪ Everyone was there
to greet me ♪

♪ When I stepped inside ♪

♪ Newspaper men ♪

♪ Eating candy ♪

♪ Had to be held down ♪

♪ By big police ♪

♪ Someday ♪

♪ Everything's
gonna be different ♪

♪ When I paint ♪

♪ That masterpiece ♪