Ego keeps a lot of people afloat.
It informs their decisions and, to some extent, makes them predictable to anyone who cares to pay a little attention.
It must have come up in our Billions reviews that Mike Prince -- like any other billionaire -- suffers from the all-too-common condition among people of his stature. He suffers from inflated self-importance.
We will discuss everything that went down on Billions Season 7 Episode 6, so if you're yet to get caught up on it, beware of spoilers.
Mike prepared to confront the ruling sentiments from the electorate where he was concerned. It was a standard procedure in candidacy, but that gave the saboteurs in his midst the opportunity to try and trim him down and, if lucky, get him to quit.
To brave the tumultuous waters of politics is not an easy feat. It requires a person whose self-awareness and pride are above that of an average person. They need the spirit to keep going even in the face of soul-crushing challenges.
Wendy saw that as the in she needed to try and get him to quit because it would be a win all around if she could do it without starting a war.
This line began a volley between her and Bradford.
I think I've mentioned this before, but it is worth mentioning again. Wendy Rhoades wields a lot of power over the humans at MPC, Prince included.
He placed complete trust in her, which he must if he wanted to perform at his best, and she corrupted that.
She hoped that his getting a negative picture of himself from his employees would demotivate him from pursuing the presidential seat.
And look, just like any other relationship between employees and their employer, the employee must hold a certain level of respect for the employer to warrant waking up in the morning to make them money.
But deep inside, they also form opinions about their employer that they would never speak out loud. Or they would when the conditions are right.
And the conditions were right when they were asked for their feedback anonymously.
It was like a gut punch for Prince. He was ready to give up.
Billions Season 7 teased alliances, and they weren't kidding.
The hour saw Grigor return as his and Axe's circles crossed somewhere in Europe. It was comical to think about how Axe had Chuck run Grigor out of America, only for him to turn to Axe and run him out of America, too.
Axe: Threats? Really? What in my history makes you think I respond well to threats?
Grigor: What in my history makes you think it's merely a threat?
I can't say I was thrilled to see the character back because John Malkovich's Russian accent was the absolute worst. I was glad when his arc ended in the same episode.
Grigor and Axe's unholy alliance rippled to America as Axe tried to insulate himself from the consequences of his actions by asking for a favor from Chuck.
Ira: Why even would you consider getting the Russian oligarch back into the country?
Chuck: As a favor to Bobby Axelrod.
Ira: Those words just tumbled out of your mouth like a meth addict's teeth and just as fucked up.
Wasn't that the shock of the century? Even if it might be too early to remove them from our list of TV's best hate-driven relationships, asking and exchanging favors marked a shift in their relationship.
There wasn't that Axe-Chuck magic in their interaction because Axe had to lower himself to a high degree, but it was nice to see them work together.
Taking down Prince will take a village, which was coming together nicely.
Chuck promised to collect on the favor, and with his eye still trained on Prince, Axe won't have an option but to say yes.
Chuck: Took me some time to realize there was reason enough to help you from the start.
Axe: Old combatants' code...
Chuck: ...that's the other reason. Someday, and that day will definitely come, I will call upon you to repay this debt. And I know you won't come up short.
Chuck Senior came to his son with an ask (when doesn't he ever), and in a bid to play the dutiful son, Chuck Junior raced to help solve it, only to discover something deeper.
Opposing values are one thing that makes marriages and families fall apart, apart from infidelity. Before getting married and deciding to have a child, every couple should review every social or personal issue and see if they can reach a middle ground.
Religion is one such issue. While many couples from different denominations find a way to make the marriage work, a theist and an atheist might never make it work.
Chuck Junior decided to end the cycle of his father's dominance over his children, and he might have singlehandedly saved several generations from years of therapy and thousands of dollars.
He also orchestrated a plan that saw him kill two birds with one stone. He did Grigor his favor while keeping the peace with his donors and supporters.
It was just funny thinking how many characters in this episode would never be willing to talk to each other only a few years back, but now they were eating from the other person's palm.
The anti-Prince trio tried to plant a seed of doubt in more than one person, and Wags took a shot at Sacker.
The biggest pitfall in American politics is the two major political parties which suck up all the air in the room, leaving nothing for people who don't want to participate in that line of politicking.
Sacker contemplated leaving Prince's campaign to gain herself some goodwill with both parties but, on advice from her father, decided against it.
Overall, all the moves the anti-Prince trio had made ended up backfiring against them, with Prince more determined than ever to win that seat.
I'm Mike Prince. If you only follow the primaries, you don't know me. And that's by design, so the status quo can keep a hold of your futures. I bought this time, and it didn't come cheap because I'm my own man. And because we need to have a hard conversation about why both parties and our system are broken. This is about the inventory we all need to take in order to get where we're going, even if we don't always like what we see.Prince
His address was the kind of speech that rallies people from all walks of life, and if I were a voting man, I would have voted for him based on that speech alone.
Extra Thoughts from the Trading Floor
- Wags, Wendy, and Taylor are begging to get caught. How do you plot to take a man down in his own house? Even the least attentive people will notice the little meetings they keep having and the looks they keep sharing. Bradford clocked that several times.
- While Wags has a hold on his bullsh*t face, Wendys betrays all her feelings and emotions, and someone (Bradford) will soon see it.
- How did Todd Krakow manage to rise to the level he was? Everywhere he turned, everyone oppressed him. Was it because of the height?
"The Man in the Orange Drab T-Shirt" didn't do much to progress the story, at least not how we wanted it to, but it wasn't boring as it showed the potential outcomes the anti-Prince trio might run into while weaving Axel back into the picture.
What did you think?
Would you head for divorce if your spouse taught your child the wrong religion, or religion?
Chime in in the comments section.
Denis Kimathi is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. He has watched more dramas and comedies than he cares to remember. Catch him on social media obsessing over [excellent] past, current, and upcoming shows or going off about the politics of representation on TV. Follow him on Twitter.