Ray Donovan
The Bag Or The Bat

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

Ray: "I haven't even had my coffee yet?"
Bridget: "And why we don't go to church."

And perhaps why Mickey shot a priest in the face? If you're maybe guiltily drawing the lines between Southie, Irish, Catholics and molestation, have no fear: You are not overthinking this show.

Abby: "I noticed on your iPad you're doing a job for Stu Feldman*? He's on the board at Marlborough. It is basically all I'm going to talk about for the first two episodes of this show, so if you know what's good for you you'll make an effort."

They dance awkwardly to the neighbor's still-thumping rap music, in a way that less signifies how comfortable and affectionate they really are as a couple and how cute they are as a family, and is more like being hit over the head with a handmade posterboard sign that says "THIS IS THE PART WHERE THEY ARE CUTE AND THE KIDS ARE CUTE AND AREN'T THEY CUTE." The show is not subtle. Luckily, they got some great actors, everybody is wonderful to watch, so you don't really have to worry about if the show is good or not. The actors are good and the story gets good later, so the pilot-y nature of the pilot is less off-putting than it should be.

*(Stunningly awful, is Stu Feldman. The first sign that this show is operating on more levels than you think.)

THE CAVEAT

Giant Avi's vacuuming DNA off the bed when Ray calls him back; Lena's got a plant at TMZ that says so far they're good. They have a little ritual where he asks her to call Lee Drexler, and when she's got him she stays on the line. It makes more and more sense the more you get to know Lee Drexler, and how Ray and Lena operate: Drexler's going to bark out meaningless insults and instructions, and Lena's going to be dealing with half of them anyway.

What's more subtle is the notably chivalrous way Ray always speaks to Lena: It would be demeaning, if she weren't the most powerful and least femme-y person on the planet, but instead it's a sign of respect, of his need, for her competence; when he calls her "Doll" she's the only woman on earth where it doesn't mean anything beyond his affection.

Lee wants to know where they are with Tommy Wheeler, an action star who quote "has a $200M heterosexual movie coming out in a month, picks up a tranny on Sunset Boulevard." Lee's the kind of person that says "tranny" or this show is the kind of show that says "tranny," but it's one or the other. Ray promises to meet him at Lee's office when he can, but comes up with a plan that he -- and the show -- are quite tickled by.

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Ray Donovan

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