Ray Donovan
The Bag Or The Bat

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: C | 38 USERS: A-
YOU GRADE IT
The Solution

Ashley: "He worked on a case for my ex-boyfriend. Stu Feldman."
Abby: "Did he happen to mention Marlborough?"

Ray offers to drive Ashley home, since Abby's got a drink in her hand, and after a stern talking-to about "stop stalking me" and "please don't infiltrate my marriage," she gives him road head. It is very classy, everybody's behavior is very healthy today.

THAT NIGHT

Ray goes to his LA apartment, because Abby has put two and two together and come up with five, but also she's right: This somehow was a trespass. He didn't ever get around to fucking her, and nothing had happened at the time Abby got pissed, but somehow between then and now he got a blowjob, so she's right by being wrong. A theme for old Abby, who's got a handle on Occam's Razor that puts the lie to a lot of Ray's plausible deniability stuff.

Which again starts out making her very annoying -- because he's the star of the show and we see how hard he is trying all the time -- but ends up making her a safe place for you, the viewer, because (as per Ezra) no lie lives forever: Having one character just constantly calling bullshit makes this bullshit-filled world a much safer place to explore. I think also for him; I think having one other Southie there that owes him nothing but her honesty makes LA a livable universe.

Ray: "Avi, please make sure somebody claims that girl's body from the hotel this morning. I don't want her just sitting there, alone."

Ashley: "I can't stop thinking about you..."
Ray: "Try."

It's interesting because her whole deal is that she has been an object for so long she doesn't understand how much power there is in it: She thinks she's just a doll, so that's what she is. Which is a shame but nothing new. And now this thing, this stalker-reversal where she's coming after his life, is really just the same as any old stalker that ever jerked off to her: A place to put her loneliness and her dad and her missing childhood and the fact that we are never, ever safe, but there's a man who promises you that you are safe and that you are in the solution. Not one of these things, I think, outweighed by any other.

When every man in the world is a monster that treats you like a sex doll, except this one guy will barely even let you suck his dick, that's attractive in a lot of very real, pretty respectable ways. The fact of him defending his marriage makes him more attractive, not less, because that stability is what she wants to osmose out of him. It's not a new story, but in a story about a town where everybody spends all their time and money and effort and talent turning everybody else into dolls and trying to keep that way, it's a fresh look for it. That you could get so caught in the trap that even just being able to breathe for a second becomes sexualized.

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Ray Donovan

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