Tag Archives: John Getz

Homeland: Realizing You’re Fighting Your Own Side

Photo Courtesy Of Showtime
Photo Courtesy Of Showtime

Warning: Spoiler Alert

The Seventies were a “learning decade” for the American people, as a President and Vice President resigned their posts, in a year’s time. We also found out about clandestine missions undertaken by the FBI and the CIA and that these missions occurred with very little oversight. New laws and bills got passed, making United States Intelligence Agencies, more accountable, limiting their abilities to do things our citizens would disapprove of. However after 9/11, many of the restraints got lifted and some say the Agency operates as it did in the Sixties.

How must it feel, for an idealistic CIA Agent in the field, risking their lives fighting corrupt governments around the globe, to find out that your Agency’s run through back-door deals, that undo all the good that you accomplished? In the fourth season finale of the Showtime Original Series “Homeland,” former Islamabad CIA Station Chief Carrie Mathison, dealt with that realization in the episode’s closing minutes. Even the one man she trusted, now seems to have feet of clay.

There was very little action or excitement in the season finale, but this season’s had plenty of both in previous episodes. This was an episode, that gave it’s audience some deep background information about the characters, revealing things about the Mathison family, that had never even been hinted at. We also watched as Carrie blew what might have turned out as her “Happy Ending,” by her indecision and fear of commitment.

Carrie’s back in the States and in the first scene we see her looking at a man’s belongings, his shoes, his ties, an extensive matchbook collection, souvenirs of trips throughout his lifetime. Suddenly Carrie’s sister Maggie walks into the room holding an old razor, their dad’s who just passed away and we realize they’re sorting through his belongings. Suddenly the doorbell rings, she looks out the window and sees a Government staff car and a chauffeur in her driveway, she tells Maggie she’ll handle it.

She answers the front door, to find Agency official Dar Adal waiting for her, he tells her he’s sorry about her dad and asks if she’s going to invite him into her home. She tells him that Frannie’s asleep, and they sit down on some furniture on her front porch. Adal, dispenses with social graces and gets right to the point of his visit, he asks Mathison where Peter Quinn’s at. Carrie tells him she’s not sure if he’s returned from Islamabad, he’s on a mission to kill Taliban leader Haissam Haqqani, Dar tells her Haqqani’s back in the tribal areas and out of Quinn’s reach. He leaves, but asks her to contact him if she hears from Peter.

Saul Berenson’s sitting on his bed watching ISI leader and ally of Haqqani, Nasneem speaking to the press about the United States cutting off diplomatic relations with Pakistan. She insults the USA, says that her country’s been under the United States thumb for too long and says if they want to leave, let them. Saul’s wife Mira shuts off the set with the remote control and tells her husband he’s got to get his mind off Pakistan. He got terminated by the contractor he worked for, he wants to return to the Agency, but she tells him he realizes that’s not possible. He says he has to get dressed for his meeting.

Carrie takes Frannie to the park in her stroller and an older gentleman walks up to them and asks if that’s Frannie, he’s a friend of Carries father and has yet to hear of his passing. He tells her that Frank loved her daughter so much, then asks if she’s Carrie. Mathison’s taken aback, but the man tells her that Frank bragged about her all the time, that she had problems adjusting to motherhood, but she’d be back to raise the baby. He said Carrie’s made of tough stuff. She thanks the man for telling her that and heads home.

Carrie and daughter return from the park and she notices a strange car in the driveway with Missouri plates. After she hands off Frannie to the nanny, she walks into the kitchen, shocked at whose with Maggie. It’s the girl’s mother Ellen, a character never mentioned during the series until this point. Turns out Ellen went out to get some milk 15-years earlier and never came home. Carrie’s enraged to see her, asking if she thinks she can pull off the grieving wife routine after all this time?

Carrie tells her to leave the house, when Maggie reminds her that the house belongs to her and she wants Ellen to stay. Mathison says then she and the baby will go elsewhere, which prompts Ellen to leave the house, Maggie hesitates a minute than runs after her but Ellen’s driven away.

Saul meets with a top Government official Joe Crocker, about the possibilities of regaining his position as CIA Chief, with Lockhart’s resignation pending. Crocker tells him there’s nobody he’d rather run the Agency, but once Haqqani releases the tape of Saul as a prisoner, his nomination would go down in flames. Saul then asked about getting a bureau or even become Chief of Station, but Crocker tells Saul it’s not in the cards.

Carrie and Maggie are sitting on the front door step, as Carrie somewhat apologizes for the way she treated their mother. She says to Maggie that she thought she hated Ellen and Maggie responded, she thought so too until she showed up. She says that now she’ll be out of contact for another 15-years, but Carrie tells her she got the tag numbers and can find out where she lives in an hour.

The funeral’s the following morning and Carrie gives the eulogy for her dad. She mentions the things he cherished, like the Baltimore Orioles and he’d yell at the TV for his team to stop stinking up the diamond. She then says he had his demons, but he learned how to control them, then he taught her how to control hers when she developed the same illness. She thanks him for taking care of Frannie, but tells him she’s ready to take over now.

Outside the church mourners come to embrace her and wish her condolences, when she sees Quinn standing 50-yards away, she excuses herself, runs over and embraces him telling him she’d been worried sick. He drives her back to the house in his truck and he got out of Pakistan due to his friends in German Intelligence. Carrie then tells her she had Haqqani in her sights, ready to shoot, when Aasar Khan stopped her, she omitted that Dar Adal was in the vehicle with Haqqani.

Maggie asks Carrie who Peter is and she tells her he’s a friend from work, Maggie says that he’s getting along famously with Frannie. Mathison seeks out Saul and asks Mira if she can steal him for a bit and she smiles and says of course. She asks what he learned in his meeting with Crocker and Saul says not a whole lot. Carrie asks what his explanation of Adal being with Haqqani and Berenson says he left names out of the conversation. He says that right now that information stays with them and don’t share it with Quinn and she wholeheartedly agrees.

Peter comes over right at that moment and asks if he’s interrupting  and they tell him not in the least. the three sit down at a table that looks like it’s in a screened in porch. Peter asks if Carrie’s dad liked Irish Whiskey and she says sure, as Quinn pulls three glasses. After they’ve talked for a while Lockhart, arrives to pay his respects and apologizes for being so late but he got tied up with his lawyers. Peter pours him a glass and they toast.

Quinn stays to help clean up and then Carrie walks him to his truck, Maggie smiles when they leave, showing that she thinks he and Carrie belong together. The couple make small-talk ass they walk back to the truck and Peter has that look on his face like he wants to kiss her but he’s afraid, she looks back looking very frightened. But suddenly they pull together and fall into a deep and passionate kiss.

As soon as they stop, Mathison says she’s going to screw this up and Peter says she’s silly. He tells her he’s seen her at her worst and she says he should’ve run for the hills. Quinn then tells her he wants out of the Agency, but he can’t do it alone, he needs her by his side making the move with him. He asks her to consider it and drives home.

She can’t sleep, so she  gets out of bed and heads into her dad’s room, sits down at his desk and goes through the drawers. She finds a bunch of pictures of her parents when they first got married and sees how happy they looked. The first thing in the morning she’s loaded her suitcase and tells Maggie they’re going on a road-trip to see her mother. Maggie convinces Carrie to leave Frannie with her and Carrie drives to Missouri.

Later that day an old friend and fellow operative Dale shows up at Peter’s apartment and tells him they’re going on a mission to Syria, but Quinn says he’s not going and he’s quitting the Agency. Dale thinks he’s joking at first, but Peter makes it clear he’s serious. Dale pulls out all the stops, but fails to convince his friend, so he hands Quinn the possible last letters from the agents heading over.

Carrie drives straight through the night and arrives at Ellen’s home in the morning. She rings the bell and a teenage boy, answers it and asks if he can help her. She asks if Ellen’s home and he tells her she went to work, Carrie asks teaching and the boy confirms it and says Jefferson. He asks who she is and she replies just a friend and then just stands there. The boy tells her he’s going to school, Carrie apologizes and gets in her car. We watch the boy ride off on his bike and Mathison drives to Ellen’s school.

Ellen’s surprised to see her and Carrie tells her she drove all night. Carrie asks whom the boy is and Ellen tells her it’s her brother, Tim. Carrie blurts out that’s why you left to have more children and apologizes, but Ellen says she deserves it. She can’t talk now, but asks her daughter to come to her home at 3:30 that afternoon.

Berenson and Adal meet in a restaurant booth for a breakfast meeting. Dar asks Saul how his meeting went with Crocker and Berenson says he’s out of the running for CIA Director. Adal asks him, what he’d say if Dar could guarantee to get him back on the very short list to become Director and Berenson, replies he’d tell Adal he’s having a major senior moment.

Adal puts a tiny plastic container on the table and Saul asks what’s that, Dar replies it’s the tape from Haqqani, it’s supposedly the only copy, but Haqqani promised he’d never release it publicly. Saul asks what Dar gave in return and the longtime Agency employee, told Saul he took him off the kill list and gave him free rein in Pakistan in return for keeping terrorists out of Afghanistan. Saul replies Haqqani’s the terrorist and though Adal agrees, he says Haqqani will take over Kabul in the next few months.

Adal then explains the world according to him, which brought no great revelations for viewers. We met Dar Adal in season two of the series and we’ve witnessed him conveniently switch sides, according to the situation. Adal originally pushed for Berenson to become the permanent Director of the Agency last season, but quickly sidled up to former Senator Andrew Lockhart, when he got the position.

Saul tells Adal that he’s uncomfortable with the situation and making deals with enemies, Dar reminds Berenson, that there’s plenty of precedent in the global community. Then he says to Saul to come back to his home and lead them, the Agency awaits him with open arms.

Carrie’s in her hotel room, when Peter calls and says there’s a rumor she’s in Missouri and she tells him she drove there to talk to her mother. Peter asks if she’s given any thought to his proposal and she basically tells him she’s too wrapped up with her mother, to give it any thought. Quinn says that if the answers, a no, that’s okay.

Carrie assures him she’s not saying no, but she just found out she’s got a teenage brother. Then she says, she’s off making crazy trips, just like her dad did, how will things work out between them and Quinn says, so this is the no. She once again assures him, that it’s just the opposite, she just can’t handle pressure right now. She says she’ll call him when she gets home, he says sure, then throws his phone to the floor.

Mathison heads to Ellen’s house and she asks her mother if there’s any chance she’ll confront Tim’s father and her mother tells her the father took off before she gave birth. Carrie asks her why didn’t she just say she got pregnant and come home. Ellen replies she couldn’t bring herself to admit it, she had hurt too many people. She then admits to Carrie she had numerous affairs and Frank always forgave her and took her back, but she crossed the line in her own mind this time.

Carrie says that Frank always said she just couldn’t live with him being bi-polar, but she said her father was loyal. Carrie says she always thought she couldn’t have a long-term relationship because of her condition. Ellen says that’s not the case and Carrie leaves. Mathison heads back to her motel room and packs her bags, then calls Quinn, but his number’s disconnected as is his e-mail account. She gets Adal’s voice mail and asks where’s Quinn then drives home.

The four-man unit that’s heading for Syria makes it’s final preparations, when Quinn arrives asking who’s the new guy, he steps up and Peter says he’s taking his spot. The rookie’s unhappy, but Dale’s extremely pleased that Peter decided to join the mission.

Mathison drives to Adal’s house and rings the bell until he gets to the door, she thanks him for returning her message and he replies she’d supposed to contact him when she saw Peter. She asks where he is and he tells her to get in the house. He tells her that he’s most likely in Syria at this moment, she says she needs to speak to him and he replies they went dark an hour before. He says it’s an open-ended mission, and they’ll most likely head home from Iraq. She says she needs to talk to him and Adal says she can’t.

She then looks him dead in the eye and tells him she saw him with Haqqani in Islamabad. He asks her what game she’s playing and she says getting what I want. She says if she doesn’t get her to speak to Peter, she’s heading to the Washington Post and telling them what she saw. He says she’s crazy and perhaps she’d like to talk to Saul first, she replies she knows what Berenson will say. Adal says, well ask him yourself, opens the door to his patio and she sees Saul sitting there. Her face shows her shock and disillusionment, she silently leaves, gets into her car and drives away, ending the season.

Halt And Catch Fire: The 214s

Photo by Tina Rowden/AMC
Photo by Tina Rowden/AMC

Warning: Spoiler Alert

Perhaps the best analogy for the eighth episode of AMC summer sensation “Halt And Catch Fire,” would be the juggler who keeps multiple plates spinning on sticks, forcing him to constantly move, ensuring that none of the plates ever hit the ground. There were so many individual brush fires burning within Cardiff Electric and in the lives of some characters, that one false move could have led to an inferno. Each of the show’s main characters were severely tested during the episode and the team behind the Cardiff Electric personal computer, dubbed the “Giant” almost led each member running to a different destination.

The episode opened on a productive morning at the Cardiff office-complex, as Sales Manager John Bosworth, programmer Cameron Howe, software engineer Gordon Clark and Senior Product Manager Joe MacMillan, planned out their itinerary for the company’s appearance at Comdex to introduce their revolutionary machine. Clark and MacMillan talk to Bosworth about all the money that the company will need to payout to make the right impression and they finish arrangements on getting a booth in prime retail space on the trade-show’s floor.

The camaraderie among the team disappears quickly when Gordon finds out that only MacMillan will represent the company at Comdex, as he naturally assumed that he was in on the trip and presentation. He ridicules Joe, telling him that although he’s great in sales, he knows nothing about the computer and he’ll be stuck if the machine glitches. MacMillan hits Clark below the belt, reminding the engineer of the disaster he and his wife Donna went through two-years earlier when they tried introducing their own personal computer the Symphonic.

Gordon goes back to his office and freaks out that he’s being left home after envisioning himself rubbing elbows, with industry visionaries like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates. He tries listening to a stress-relieving cassette on his Walkman but seconds later chucks the machine against his office wall.

Donna’s back at their house, watering the back lawn, repaired from Gordon’s excavation mission in search of a Giant in the previous episode, when she realizes someone’s on her property. She heads out front to find her boss at Texas Instruments, Hunt about to get back into his car. She stops him and asks why he’s there and he becomes flustered and asks her to forget he was there. He seems interested in pursuing a romantic relationship with Donna, one she initiated in the previous episode by misreading his intentions and kissing him. She tells him that he can’t just show up at her house, he tells her she’s a fantastic woman and drives away.

She enters the house to find a very solemn Gordon and we can see that she believes that her husband’s aware of her indiscretion. However, she sighs with relief when he tells her that he broke their rule about consulting each other about purchases over fifty dollars, by spend 450 dollars for a hotel room for Comdex. She smiles blankly and tells him that’s fine.

Next morning Bosworth’s about to enter his office with a coffee cup in hand when his secretary tries to intercept him, but he brushes her off, walks into his office and sees a very angry Nathan Cardiff standing in front of his desk. John tries using his “Good Ol Boy Charm” on the owner of the company, but it fails miserably. Nathan brings up an earlier conversation between them, when Bosworth approached him to pony up the money that the personal computer division needed, but the owner denied the request and told his employee that when the division ran out of funds to shut it down.

John starts to exhibit his discomfort with the conversation, just as we realize that something’s amiss. How could the team make this giant presentation without any funds left in the budget? Bosworth tries to say that he was able to cut some unnecessary expenses and divert it to the division, but we can see by the look in Nathan’s eyes that he’s aware that his Sales Manager has done far more manipulation than what he stated.

We move to the outer office to see a group of FBI agents entering the building and we soon learn they are there for two purposes, to arrest Bosworth for hacking into the company’s bank account and diverting funds into the computer division and to shut Cardiff down and to seize all the computers on the premises. Clark walks into the office minutes after the agents arrived and heads straight to the “Kill Room” and proceeds to disassemble the Giant prototype. By the time the agents enter the room the prototype is now in pieces and arousing no suspicion from the agents, who take a computer from the office but leave all the components of the Giant behind.

Nobody can spot a scam quicker than a scam-artist, a role MacMillan has found himself in several times over the years and he grabs Cameron and pull her into an office, closing the door behind him. Joe realizes that Bosworth doesn’t have the skill-set to have hacked into the bank’s computer system and it’s unlikely anyone in his circle of friends have that knowledge either. He asks Cameron if she’s involved and the programmer tells him that she and John would have replenished the diverted funds with sales from the Giant. He leaves the office and runs into Gordon in the hallway and they make plans to meet back at the Clark’s house.

Cameron, Joe and Gordon sit down in the Clark’s garage and Gordon mistakenly believes that there’s no truth to the accusations, but MacMillan quickly makes him aware that’s incorrect. He tells Clark that Howe’s involved and the three start throwing barbs and accusations at each other and all three head their separate ways. Gordon calls Donna at her office and starts to unload all his problems, but she can’t handle it and tells him she has to attend a meeting. She brings some reports to Hunt’s office, but his secretary tells her he’s not in the office, then asks if Donna would like to sign the going-away card for Hunt, who handed in his resignation unexpectedly. Donna’s rocked by the news that he’s leaving and tries unsuccessfully to get further details from the secretary.

Gordon grabs a pair of bolt-cutters from his garage and heads into his car. We next see him in the Cardiff offices and he gathers up all the components for the Giant and carries them into his car and takes off quickly. Donna has no idea where he could be and goes to bed, but wakes up at 1:50 am and sees her husband has yet to come to bed. She finds him in the garage finishing reassembling the Giant and she screams at him that he’s tampering with evidence in a criminal case, but he corrects her as by leaving it behind during the raid, the FBI did not consider it evidence.

He tells his wife he’s crazy and she once was too, but she felt she had to mature and take on the role of the grown-up in the relationship. Gordon begs for her to remember who she was and believe in him and Donna tells him she supports him fully. He tells her that he’s driving to Austin as that’s where Cameron reportedly is, kisses his wife and takes off into the night. She heads into the house, calls her mother and tells her that she and her two daughters need to stay with them for a while. She asks her mother to pick up the girls in the morning and she plans to talk to Joe the next evening.

Howe’s playing video games at an arcade as Clark walks over to her and says he’s got next and the shock registers in her eyes. She develops a new-found respect for the engineer when he reveals he broke into Cardiff and stole the Giant, which now’s in his garage. He starts talking to her about her heading to Comdex along with him and Joe, but she’s against the idea at first, but Gordon shows some salesmanship by getting her to agree to join them.

MacMillan’s working his own angles, calling a potential customer about placing an order for some of the Cardiff computers before Comdex, but the man says he’s going to buy the IBM model. Joe counters that IBM doesn’t produce a personal computer, but the man informs him that word on the street says that “Big Blue” will have a model in production the following year. Joe decides to get the information straight from the horse’s mouth and catches a flight to New York to hear it from his estranged father. John Getz who’s cast as MacMillan Senior’s an actor that I remember as a very young man from the seventies. The characters that he played did not have the angst of either of the MacMillan men, but he’s done a great job in the role now making two appearances.

Father asks son why he’s in his office and the son responds to find out whether IBM is going into the personal computer market. MacMillan Senior replies they are and Joe takes it as an overt act by his father to crush him. The father tells his son that he has delusions of grandeur, that even if Joe Senior, wanted to accomplish that IBM would never allow it. He then says that if it’s any consolation the machine won’t start production for at least a year.

The son getting the information he came for, gets ready to depart and fly back to Dallas, but his father convinces him to have a drink and clear the air between them. We quickly get to the source of the problem between them and what led to his meltdown at IBM. Joe’ father told him, that his mother was dead for 23-years, only to find out shortly before his scary performance at IBM that she got committed to an institution for all those years and his dad told him the truth when his mother actually passed.

We learned a few episodes back Mrs. MacMillan had some severe mental problems and was abusing drugs when Joe was in grade school. One night she took him up to their roof to look at the stars and without paying attention, let go of his hand and the boy immediately lost his balance and impaled throughout his torso as he landed on a metal fence with each post topped with a point.  Joe asked if his father hates him because he reminds him of his late wife and MacMillan Senior replies he loves his son and he loved his wife. He then asks his son to return to IBM and Joe replies he will if he’s in charge of the personal computer division, his father says he’ll make it happen and it looks like MacMillan is going to leave his teammates floating down the river on their own.

Donna’s waiting for her soon-to-be estranged husband at the house and she walks into the garage and heads over to the Giant and boots it up. At first we can tell she’s impressed, soon she starts to enjoy and then a broad smile covers her face as she realizes Gordon encoded an encryption that they are the only two people that can read it She sees their original computer broken on the garage floor and attempts to fix it, but as she heads into the drawer she stumbles across a red ring box, smiles and then starts to cry, moments before she’s scared that he was losing his mind, those fears vanish upon discovering the box.

Back from Austin the pair head  to Joe’s and he doesn’t answer the door, however Cameron has a key and lets them both in. Not  as ostentatious as Gordon imagined. After the pair get some beer and a pizza, and while are eating and drinking on MacMillan’s floor the two open enough to each other to talk about their histories. Now we get the information that so effected Donna. He tells Howe, that he and Donna met while was in college and he really wanted this kit to build your own computer, but he was deep in debt and couldn’t get everything he wanted. As she knocks on his door he is frantically searching the ring.  After watching his effort in futility, she told him to stop looking for the ring, she found it and pawned it, and she got him the Computer Kit telling him that when he sells his first computer, she then would gladly take the ring back.  He told Cameron that the original guy who designed their first ring duplicated it completely and he has it hidden in the garage.

Joe finds Gordon and Cameron at his apartment and questions why they are there, Gordon tells him the three of them are going to Comdex and MacMillan once again ridicules his statement. However Clark then tells Joe that he has the Giant in his garage and the three of them can go there, take orders from customers and with the sad financial strength of Cardiff Electric, Nathan’s not going to refuse to get the added revenue. They have just one problem, they need funds so Cameron convinces Joe to sell his Porsche and although totally bummed, they now have the money to show off the Giant at Comdex. They head back to Clark’s house and Donna tells her husband she’s joining him for trip to Comdex and it appears that the marriage’s back on steady ground.

The story will pick up again next Sunday night on “AMC

Halt And Catch Fire: Adventure In The Silicon Prairie

Photo Credit: Blake Tyers/AMC
Photo Credit: Blake Tyers/AMC


Episode five of AMC series “Halt And Catch Fire,” opened with a study in contrasts as we watch Joe MacMillan and Cameron Howe, wake up and prepare for their work-day at Cardiff Electric. MacMillan wakens still feeling pain in his torso, from the beat-down he got from some Texas police officers in the previous episode, although the bruises on his face have mostly healed. Cameron wakes up in a hotel bed and she is in far better spirits than she was waking up in her basement work-station at Cardiff. She takes a shower, washes her hair, gets dressed and then calls a taxi to take her to work.

Joe however, is grimacing with every move he makes, even having difficulty buttoning his shirt and putting on his tie. After he finishes getting dressed, he grabs his baseball bat and tries to attempt to swing it, but the pain he experiences in his first two attempts, prevents him from completing the task. Finally in his third attempt, MacMillan is able to swing through the pain and repeats the process a few more times.

Gordon Clark arrives home from Cardiff just as his wife Donna is cooking breakfast. He tells her he is just home long enough to change and grab a cup of coffee and we see the disappointment in Donna’s face. It is her father’s birthday and both her mother and dad are at the house, Donna had thought that her husband had come home to wish his father-in-law a happy birthday. At that point both of Donna’s parents walk into the kitchen and engage Gordon in conversation. Clark and his father-in-law walk into the dining room where Gordon’s two daughters are sitting at the table, entranced with the electronic gadget they are playing with. Clark assumes they have a calculator, but in fact it is a TV set the size of a wrist watch, his father-in-law Gary, tells him it is the latest hot item from Japan and he will be selling it in his next catalog.

We head to Cardiff Electric and see Sales Manager John Bosworth, holding a presentation for a bunch of prospective buyers for their upcoming personal computer, while Joe stands in the back of the room with his back against the glass and remaining silent. Bosworth is playing his “Good Ol’ Boy,” persona for all it’s worth, telling the various company executives, that because their new computer will be so light and portable, they can take their secretaries for some “Afternoon Delight,” and tote the computer with them, so they’ll never miss a memo.

The group laugh heartily at Bosworth’s joke, but then start asking him technical questions that he is not knowledgeable enough to answer. He looks to MacMillan at the back of the room and Joe tells his boss that he’s just some carpetbagger from New York and the group would have no interest in what he has to say. Bosworth realizing he’s trapped, tells his potential clients that they can look up the answers to their questions in the packages in front of them. After getting his fill of John squirming, he started talking to the group and soon had their undivided attention.

Joe MacMillan maybe a man without any redeeming qualities, however he is a superb orator and even better at sizing up a situation, to say exactly the right thing at the most opportune time. That is what makes him an extraordinary salesman, a natural shark always looking for his next kill. MacMillan could steal your watch off of your wrist and then sell it back to you, making you feel that he gave you a bargain. First he provided the answer for the new computer’s speed that had stumped Bosworth, but then he proceeded to reel his audience in. Joe told the men that Cardiff’s new machine’s designed for their “third-shelf,” with IBM occupying the first shelf and already established manufacturers taking the space on the second one.

Joe then told him that the personal computer that Cardiff would put on the market would become the new industry standard; that once the public got the chance to see the new machines, they would embrace them. Instead of concerns about something being IBM-Compatible, consumers will want Cardiff Electric-Compatible products and if they convince the CEO of each of their companies to buy the new machine, in a year each of the men in the room would be their company’s new CEO. He stopped talking and each excited executive in the room had questions to ask him.

Cameron  traveled to Cincinnati at the request of MacMillan, for an apparent company project and when she arrives at Cardiff she’s overwhelmed with the changes that went on in her absence. The company hired a slew of new young programmers as well as a new software director named Steve, that Cameron takes an instant dislike to. We can sense from their first meeting, that Steve will attempt to break Cameron’s spirit and show her whose the boss.

Cameron walks into Joe’s office interrogating him on why he hired Steve instead of putting her in charge. He responds that her lack of people skills, management experience as well as her demeanor, would make her a liability in that position. He then tells her that “the thing” they have going on, doesn’t provide her more privilege at Cardiff. She then reaches into his front pants pocket, taking the key to his apartment to take all her stuff out of there.

Cameron does become friendly with two of the new programmers, a guy named Lev with horn-rimmed glasses (in an era, that they were not close to being stylish in) and a heavy-set long-haired guy, whose nickname is Yo-Yo as he always has one in his hand. Howe tells the guys that she is going to download a computer game onto the main-frame, so that everyone in the office will be able to access it from their terminal.

Gordon and his team are ready to test the chip with the new BIOS that Cameron designed and are debating names for the BIOS, when she walks into the “Kill-Room.” She announces to the group that she designed the BIOS and will name it as well and her choice is Lovelace, which make the crew giggle like a gang of high school kids. She then tells them, it’s not for porn-star Linda Lovelace but instead for a woman instrumental in the first computer, Ada Lovelace. All the men agree that it’s a fitting name for the program.

With the name decided, they test the chip and it turns on the machine. Although the crew’s excited at their accomplishment, MacMillan comes in to rain on their parade. He tells the group that what they have designed is still far too bulky to fit his concept. As he walks out Gordon thinks he has found a solution to their problem, a LCD screen which the Japanese have used to great success. One of the group say it will be far too costly, but Gordon counters that with a “connection” it might be affordable.

Joe heads back to his office and his secretary tells him that his father called, he has a layover in Dallas and wants to see his son. Joe tells his secretary to set up a 1:00 pm meeting with his father at the hotel’s bar. We have yet to meet MacMillan’s father, but we realize that the kindest way to describe their relationship is “It’s Complicated.” We are well aware that Joe’s issues with his father were most likely a factor in his leaving IBM.

He drives to the hotel and instead of walking into the bar, he looks into the establishment through the window. He sees his father sitting there waiting in a chair for his arrival. However, for what ever reason Joe heads back to his car and drives away.

The scene shifts to a golf-course and we soon see that Gordon and his father-in-law Gary are in the midst of a game. Gordon’s not a regular golfer, but Gary tells him this is the perfect time for them to play as the course is empty so they can play at a leisurely pace. Clark thanks his father-in-law for the gift for his daughters and that prompts Gary to boast about his relationship with the Japanese. That was exactly what Gordon was hoping for, as it gave him a way to discuss what’s on his mind, Gary setting up a meeting with his friends in the Far East so Gordon and Joe can talk with them about them building LCD screens for the new Cardiff Electric computer. Gary’s opposed to the idea at first but eventually gives in and will set up the meeting.

We head to Texas Instruments and it appears that Donna is once again in trouble with her former high school classmate, now her boss Hunt as he can’t find the report he assigned her to complete. Donna looks through the folders he’s holding and gives him the one he wanted. Instead of apologizing he tells her to make sure the most important folder is on top from that point forward.

Things aren’t going smoothly for Gordon at Cardiff either, as MacMillan is at first non-receptive to the meeting Clark has arranged with the Japanese manufacturers. Gordon then blows up at Joe, telling him that he has asked for the moon and now that Clark has provided a way to access it, MacMillan wants to turn it down. Gordon’s logic overcomes Joe’s stubbornness, but MacMillan tells him to change the dinner meeting to a steakhouse to appeal to their visitors. He then congratulates Gordon on setting up the connection.

Cameron heads to Joe’s apartment and gets startled when she finds his father (John Getz) inside and she has no idea who he is. He introduces himself as Joe MacMillan, but Howe tells him that she knows Joe. He responds that he’s indeed Joe senior, the father of the man she knows and asks her if she knows where his son is. She tells him she doesn’t then asks him how he got into the apartment. He replied that he showed the superintendent his license and then tells Cameron that if “you say something with the right authority, you generally get what you want.”

Cameron gathers her stuff and is about to leave the apartment when the senior MacMillan says goodbye to her he asks her what her name is and she responds Cameron. At that point his eyes get large and he asks her if she is Cameron Howe and she confirms that. He tells her that his people at IBM came back to New York praising her to the heavens, which of course makes her far more comfortable. He chastises her for not taking the offer that Big Blue extended to her and she replies, that she could be a central figure at Cardiff Electric, but just another nameless employee at IBM. He then apologizes for his misplaced anger and tells her it is his son he is angry at.

Joe and Gordon meet the two Japanese manufacturers and Joe thanks them for agreeing to the meeting and one of the men tell him they would do anything for Gary’s son-in-law. Clark then tells the men that he is the son-in-law and both men bow in his direction. As the dinner goes on Gordon proceeds to get blotto as he attempts to match the visitors drink-for-drink. They discuss the design of the screen they would need and Gordon suggests improving the image quality by adding another layer to the display. The manufacturer responds that would be more costly, when Joe proposes a deal that would have the Japanese company get less money up-front, but would get a share of the profits, which could work out as a far more favorable deal for the manufacturers. The manufacturers agree to the deal.

Back at Cardiff a bunch of the young programmers are still at their desks addicted to the computer game “Adventure” that Cameron had downloaded onto the mainframe. Bosworth comes out of his office and walks over to Yo-Yo’s cubicle and tells him to come with him, when the programmer questions why John needs him, the Sales Manager asks all the programmers into his office. When they get there, Bosworth asks them how to escape from the cave he’s trapped in as he’s also playing the game.

Gordon’s drunkenness jeopardizes the deal when he insults his father-in-law to one of the manufacturers in the rest room. He tells the man that Gary’s catalog’s filled with schlock and disgusts the man from the Far East for the lack of respect Clark has displays for his father-in-law. We move to the parking lot and Joe is screaming at Gordon that he ruined the deal by insulting Gary, to men from a culture that have great respect for their elders. He then tells Clark that he will save the deal in the morning, before the men return to Japan.

The conversation continues at Joe’s apartment between his father and Cameron. She tells the elder MacMillan that she thinks his son is wrong about his father and he seems like a good guy, but in reality she is bating him to start insulting his son. He falls for her ruse and starts verbally tearing his son apart of what he believes is an empathetic audience. She soon however tells him that he is just as bad if not worse than his son and leaves the apartment.

Gordon calls Donna from a phone-booth to confess how he ruined the deal and says that Gary will hate him forever. Donna tells her husband to come home and they will talk, she is in the middle of baking some peach pies and hangs up the receiver. Seconds later it rings again and Donna assumes its Gordon however it’s Hunt, who says he called to compliment her on her work on the project and then apologizes for snapping at her in the previous episode. He asks if he has called at a bad time and she responds that she is just baking peach pies. Hunt tells her that he loves peach pie and says if there’s any leftover he’d gladly accept it.

We head to Gary’s house as Donna’s mother Susan is talking to her son-in-law whose standing on the front door step and begs to speak to Gary. She gets her husband and stage whispers that their son-in-law’s intoxicated. He looks at Clark and asks what’s wrong and the scene ends as Gordon attempts to collect his thoughts and beg for Gary’s forgiveness and help.

The next morning as the two Japanese manufacturers are ready to leave from their hotel, Joe pulls up and apologizes for Gordon as well as himself for the lack of etiquette displayed by Clark. He then tells the men that Gordon was too ashamed to come to the hotel, but he wanted Joe to convey his sorrow as well as the respect he has for Gary. Joe then starts praising his own father as the man that turned him into the success he has attained, that his father is his biggest supporter and how much MacMillan treasures him in return.

About 300-yards away, MacMillan senior is sitting in the lobby of the same hotel, reading about his son in Wall Street Quarterly. When he walks to the front of the hotel, the two Japanese men are still there but his son has already left, missing each other by seconds.

Back at Cardiff the crew in the “Kill-Room” are toasting Gordon for the deal with the Japanese when Joe enters the room. He asks Clark if he got his message and Gordon affirmed that he had. MacMillan then asked if he deserved a thank-you from Clark and Gordon told him he didn’t. Joe morphed into his “Bully Mode” and started to insult Gordon in front of the crew and boasting he saved the deal. Gordon stopped him dead in his tracks when he tells Joe the reason the deal is back in effect, was Clark groveled and begged Gary to salvage the deal, MacMillan’s  conversation that morning was not a factor.

Joe and Cameron meet in the office and she asks him if he is going to the company function that evening. He responds that he was not planning to and asks if she intends to go. She tells him that she may as some of the new programmers are heading there. Joe tells her that he noticed she removed her belongings from his apartment, but he wants back the copy of the Wall Street Quarterly he thinks she took. Howe tells him that his father was in his apartment when she arrived and he must have taken it.

The Cardiff Electric employees are having fun at what looks like a County Fair. There is a car that anyone can hit with a sledgehammer if they pay to swing the tool. Bosworth gives the attendant some money and takes a couple of swings. MacMillan shows up at that point and gives the attendant a one hundred-dollar bill and the episode concludes as Joe is trying to work off all his anger and frustration by beating that car.

The story will pick up again next Sunday night on “AMC