If you would like to read my review of the last episode, click here.
Synopsis: Lori envisions a sunny future in LA after attending the AFFA Erotica Awards with Harvey and Candy, who’s looking to connect with west-coast producers who are willing to turn her fairy tale into reality. Paul and Kenneth approach Vincent about a loan for a new nightclub, free from mob ties. Goldman visits Alston’s precinct to share the mayor’s vision for cleaning up the Deuce. Frankie wins a hand of poker, but risks losing his job. Back in NYC, Ashley pushes her reform agenda on Abby, while trying to avoid C.C.. Larry Brown and Darlene learn a bitter lesson about supply and demand. Rudy sends a message to his rivals, but invites retaliation. (HBO)
Writer: Chris Yakaitis
Director: Steph Green
Running Time: 58mins
Airs: Sundays at 9pm on HBO Canada (Canada)/HBO (United States)
This series has definitely had compelling parts going for it amongst the others buried alongside but no other episode has had so much going for it until now with this new episode firing on almost every cylinder, ending with an epic confrontation.
This episode started with C.C. doing his best tough guy routine before boarding an airplane with Lori to LA to attend AFFA Erotica Awards with Harvey and Candy. Learning the realities of air travel for the first time caused C.C. to prevent Lori from going but she was eventually allowed to go once she convinced C.C. how much it meant to her. Once she arrived in LA, Lori soaked it all in. During the awards ceremony, Lori met a talent scout who thought that she should move to LA. This was right before she won an award. Wasserman also won an award. In LA, Candy did some networking with producer in hopes of making her movie. Producers seemed more interested in using her than helping her. When she got home, we learned that Candy may be getting her son back. C.C. was resentful of Lori and he took it out on her once she returned from LA.
Larry and Darlene learned the truth about the adult industry in that there was not as much of a demand for African-American actors.
The police tuned out Goldman’s latest presentation about his proposed Times Square restoration project. Alston also learned about the mayor’s plan to remove cash businesses from the area. He also wasn’t interested in the potential new position which it may involve.
Paul and his boyfriend Kenneth (Michael Stahl-David) approached Vincent about a loan to open their dream nightclub with the one caveat that it would be separate from the mob. This was a contentious issue but Rudy was fine with it. Frankie being Frankie stole from the emporium once again to use for a poker game that he actually didn’t lose and also won a new apartment. This was the last straw for Rudy who delivered a warning for Vincent to deliver to Paul before telling Vincent that he wanted Frankie gone. Frankie was looking to buy a dry-cleaning with his winnings.
Rudy went to investigate the other parlors, including one that may be using underage girls. He met with his other mob counterparts to discuss business but things did not get very far. In retaliation, a rival parlor was set on fire.
Abby and Ashley talked about the prostitute outreach program. Abby offered to join them in their van. The prostitutes that they were helping were troubled. Ashley had been in California to avoid C.C. but the episode ended with a tense confrontation between the two. C.C. visited the Hi-Hat to ask Abby for advice about Lori who wanted none of him and Ashley just happened to be there. Ashley was scared, however, she stood up to him in what was a powerful moment, revealing that her real name was Dorothy.
Overall, this was an excellent episode that excelled with just about every subplot with the exception of Vincent and Frankie which is just getting repetitive at this point and with Paul though the subplot about the nightclub has just started. The distance is growing between Lori and C.C. so it will be interesting to see how long their relationship will last. Same goes for the city seeming to care about cleaning up Times Square. However, one of the most powerful moments in the entire series was the confrontation between Ashley (Darlene) and C.C.. If the series decides to stay on that level, than it may be on the right track after all.