Warning: Spoiler Alert
What does the most powerful “Fixer In Hollywood,” do when he sees his life and career breaking down in front of him? That became the central question in the fourth episode of the Showtime Original Series “Ray Donovan,” as the title character found the walls of the life he built for he and his family on the West Coast start to rumble. Donovan’s been used to calling all the shots, but this season his life’s in turmoil due to Los Angeles FBI Bureau Chief James Cochrane making him dance like a circus monkey to avoid sharing a prison cell in Leavenworth with his father Micky.
Ray and Boston Globe reporter Kate McPherson were getting tanked in a Los Angeles bar as the previous episode concluded and as we joined them this week, they are having sex in a hotel room. Donovan wakes up early and steps outside the room, watching the sunrise and attempting to come up with a way to keep McPherson away from Micky, whom she wants to interview about his relationship with former Public Enemy Number One Patrick “Sully” Sullivan and the way he died. The reporter doesn’t believe the story released by the Bureau that Sully got shot and killed by a FBI Agent, as she’s discovered inconsistencies in their story.
As he re-enters the room Kate and he talk and she tells him that just because they had sex, it won’t stop her from pursuing her story. Ray asks if they can see each other again and Kate declines, saying she doesn’t think it would be a wise decision. He expresses his disappointment and leaves the room and when he gets into his car calls Deb Goldman to inform her to make a bid on the house in Truesdale that Abby’s crazy about.
We see a familiar figure in the next scene as Sully’s former henchman Tiny’s in a grocery store staring at a cold cuts display, when he grabs two packages and stuffs them in his pockets and starts to walk out of the store. Tiny may have made it out of the store with the luncheon meat, but he got greedy when he became transfixed by rotisserie chickens and attempts to stuff one in his jacket. As he turns around he stands face to face with a cop who asks Tiny what he’s hiding and the food falls to the floor. Tiny picks up the chicken and attempts to run out of the store, but the obese man makes it about 50-yards into the parking lot when he gives up.
Cochrane in the kitchen with his wife answers his cell phone and breaks into a swearing jag until his wife, acting more like his mother chastises him for his language. He apologizes to his wife then asks the person on the other end of the phone where Donovan’s at? Ray soon arrives at a diner, where he meets the agent he owns on the Bureau’s staff Frank Barnes, who accompanies Donovan to the table where the Bureau Director’s having breakfast. Cochrane’s a little man in a big man’s position and he brings all the pettiness and insecurities of a little man to his job and he’s relishing ordering Donovan; a man who could rip him in half with his bare hands, around like a lap-dog.
The Director tells Ray that Tiny got arrested and started talking to the cops about the night Sully got killed on the docks, Cochrane tells Donovan he’s got 24-hours to eliminate the problem and Ray responds he’ll take care of it. Then just to show Donovan, he can’t sneeze without him being aware, Cochrane asks him about the night before with Kate McPherson.
Ray drives home, but calls Micky’s parole officer Ronald Keith and tells him that he needs to get Mickey out of his apartment and away from McPherson. Just as the reporter introduces herself to Micky, Keith pulls him away for a urinalysis and sends the Globe reporter on her way. When Keith gets the elder Donovan in his car, he calls Ray and puts his father on the line. Ray tells Micky not to talk to McPherson, or he’ll end up in prison and the old man says he’ll stay away from her if he can go visit his sons at Terry’s gym.
Ray arrives home and Abby asks him where he’d been all night and he responds working, but tells her that they’ve made a bid on the house. He then goes to take a shower and she joins him in there, but he rebuffs her attempts at love-making, telling her he has to see Ezra. She doesn’t believe his excuse and remains in the shower crying as he gets dressed.
Donovan drives to go bail-out Tiny, when his phone rings and Deb tells him their offer’s been accepted by the owners of the house and he needs to give them a million dollar deposit the next day and Ray tells her he’ll get the money. He then calls Ezra, whose avoiding Donovan’s calls and gets the secretary who tells him the agent’s still tied up in meetings. He picks up Tiny and brings him to the same motel that he hid Sully, when Ray hired the mobster to kill Micky last season.
When they enter the room, Avi’s already inside and slugs Tiny in the gut, causing the big man to start pleading for his life. Through two seasons, we have watched Ray Donovan go through a myriads of moods, but not until this episode did the South-Boston native, just lose it and scream, every vein protruding from his neck and head and his eyes on fire. He sissy-slaps Tiny and reminds him the rule they all learned at the age of five on Dorchester St. in Southie’s never talk to the cops. The big man tells Donovan he panicked, he can’t go to prison or back to Southie as everyone believes he set Sully up. Donovan takes his picture with his cell phone and tells Avi to keep Tiny in the room, then he drives over to Lena’s gives her the picture of Tiny and tells her he needs, a passport, a one-way-ticket to the Maldives Islands and 15 grand in cash in two-hours.
Mickey heads over to Terry’s gym and sees Daryl and Terry, but neither are happy to see him. Terry’s watching a video of Ireland and tells Micky he’s moving there and the old man tells him if he wasn’t on parole he’d join him. Daryl’s finally seen through all the smoke and mirrors that his father has dazzled him with over the years and realizes the old man is beyond redemption. Micky starts talking with a young boxer at the gym, about possibly managing him, then asks the kid if he’d take a dive. Terry storms out of his office and tells Micky to leave and never return.
Ray’s fed up with Ezra’s avoiding him, storms into the office suite and then into Goldman’s office and shows his anger at the way the agent’s treated him. Ezra tells Ray that he’s still angry at him, for failing to collect $5 million from former Queen of the Silver Screen June Wilson, that she pledged to the Ruth Goldman Cancer Center, that Ezra’s building in memory of his late wife. Ray tells Goldman that he did fail him and he will get the money from Wilson, but he’s keeping 20% and Ezra starts to sputter and asks what Donovan’s doing. He replies that it’s a reminder to the agent that Ray does all his dirty-work for him and that Ezra relies on him more than he’d care to admit.
June Wilson’s not looking as glamorous as she did a few weeks ago when Ray interrupted her meal at a Beverly Hills bistro with her boy-toy Carlo, a few weeks ago. Perhaps it’s too early in the day, or she’s due for a Botox injection, but her dour mood makes her look more frowsy. She reminds Ray, that she told him at their last meeting, that Ezra Goldman always demands all debts paid in full. She then hands Donovan a manila envelope and asks him to look at the contents, there’s a picture inside that looks like a photograph from the sixties of a young red-headed girl with Downs-Syndrome. June tells him the girl’s her daughter and she’s kept her hidden all these years with Ezra’s assistance and she will not allow the information to surface now and destroy her legacy. She writes Ray the check, then informs him that this will be the last time they ever socialize, Ray walks out the door looking embarrassed and ashamed.
Micky’s back at his apartment and his neighbor Shorty invites him into his room to talk and Shorty’s smoking his medical-grade marijuana, when Micky asks for a hit since he had been drug-tested that morning. Shorty’s also has an oxygen tank and he’s discovered that if you inhale the oxygen, just before hitting the joint, you get higher, Micky tries it and gets wasted. He starts to hallucinate that the dolphin on Shorty’s Miami Dolphins cap’s talking to him, in the same female voice he heard from the dolphin he encountered in Mexico. The dolphin tells Micky she was mistaken about him, that he’s just a sailor and not a captain. Micky screams back to the dolphin that he’s a captain not a sailor and Shorty tells him he never said that. The elder Donovan, collects himself and walks back to his apartment across the hall and closes the door behind him.
He then does some push ups as he still tries to collect his wits and rummages through his pocket for Kate McPherson’s card. He calls the Globe reporter and tells her he’s willing to talk for a price, she shuts him down and says she never pays for stories. Micky counters with, how about if it meant an eyewitness account from the docks the night Sully got killed? McPherson tells him she maybe able to work something out and will get back to him.
Ray heads back to the motel and tells Tiny that he’s about to embark on his new life, complete with new identity and passport, plane-fare and a home in the beautiful Maldives Islands and 15 grand in cash as a parting gift. Only problem is Tiny wants nothing to do with the plan and stupidly tries to escape through the bathroom window, which his neck wouldn’t squeeze through. Avi patches the big man’s wounds, then they attempt to drive Tiny to the airport. Tiny begs them to send him back to Boston, or better yet, allow Tiny to work for Ray. Donovan keeps repeating to the guy that he has no choice but to go there and Tiny rips up the passport and plane-ticket. They bring him back up to the room, when Cochrane calls telling Ray to meet him immediately.
Donovan pulls his car alongside the Director’s car and Cochrane asks him what’s the story with Tiny and as Ray starts to respond he informs him that he’s well aware of what’s going on and Barnes will take care of Tiny. He then plays a recording of the phone-call between Micky and McPherson and infers Ray best make sure that meeting never takes place. He heads back to the motel carrying a chicken and a bottle of red wine and tells Avi to leave, he’ll handle the situation. Avi realizes something’s wrong and tells his boss to take care. Ray gives Tiny the chicken and wine and the big man devours the meal and Donovan tells him he’ll get him ice-cream for dessert and leaves the room. He and Barnes exchange eye-contact in the parking lot, then Ray drives away.
He immediately calls Kate and tells her that she’ll put herself in serious jeopardy if she tries to contact Micky again and she wants to know what Donovan means. He responds that he can’t talk over the phone, but texts her an address and tells her to meet him there. As they hang up, two plain-clothes law-enforcement officials burst into Micky’s room and cuff him, then spirit him away.
Barnes heads into the motel room with weapon drawn and Tiny comes out of the bathroom and Barnes shoots him once in the abdomen, but Tiny charges at him like a wounded rhino, knocks Barnes down and runs out of the room. Barnes gets up and unloads on Tiny at the top of a stair case and the obese man falls down the stairs and onto an innocent bystander, pinning him to the ground. The Agent realizes what he has to do and shoots the innocent bystander between the eyes.
It’s scrabble night at the Cochrane’s and a young couple arrive for dinner and their favorite board-game. The husband appears uneasy in front of Cochrane and possibly frightened. As his wife is putting dinner on the table, Cochrane answers his phone and he briefly raises his eyebrows, then says thank you Frank and hangs up. The other woman and he are alone in the kitchen and the Director squeezes one of the woman’s breasts, eliciting no reaction from the other woman, as the head to the table to enjoy their casserole.
The story will pick up again next Sunday night on Showtime.