[Header Image: Mae Whitman as Annie Marks, Christina Hendricks as Beth Boland, and Retta as Ruby Hill | NBC]
In the aftermath of last week’s episode, we see our three leading ladies primarily dealing with things on their own. It is also revealed that Beth has been sitting on the contents of the storage locker (fake money) for a few weeks before she actually tells Annie and Ruby about it. When she does, they all try to go their separate ways but each of them discovers that shops are aware of their rapid refunding and they can no longer clean the cash that way which makes sense, things had to change up eventually in order to keep it all interesting and new.
Now, while they do come together at times, they ultimately have their own things that need to be dealt with this week as they figure out how to move forward from last week’s events. With Ruby we see that things are still weighing on her mind after Boomer, we see her reading the bible and obsessively organising supplies for the homeless shelters, but she has a new focus when Stan reveals he got another loan. Doing what she’s good at, Ruby gets the money that they need to pay off the loan which leads to one of the best scenes in the entire show. Watching her hand out cash and be so loud and vocal about it was hilarious. Time and time again we’re seeing Ruby own her power and show off just how amazing she can be. She’s never been one to take things lying down so it’s great when we get to see big displays like this.
We also see that guilt sitting very big with Annie too. She spends most of the episode with Marion who claims that she relies on Boomer for everything. When she discovers that Marion might be evicted, Annie does everything she can to make sure that doesn’t happen. While Ruby had Stan to help her move past her guilt a little, Annie has the fact that Boomer was even a horrible person to his own nana. After discovering that he was stealing from Marion, Annie puts all of her focus into making sure that Marion is actually cared for and that being evicted will never be a possibility. Between that and her scenes with Gregg, I think this is one of Annie’s more mature moments. She’s often seen as (or even acts as) the impulsive one of the three women, she’s usually making poor decisions, but in this episode she really stepped up which was really great to see.
There was also that moment where the storage locker was shown and Annie doesn’t even try to hide her anger over Beth keeping it a secret. She’s quick to tell her sister how she feels but then, later in the episode, Annie and Beth quickly make up with the two of them sitting around and drinking while they talk about how useless Dean can be. Which can I just say, is one of my favourite moments of the season. It was so good to see the two sisters getting along and just being together but it was also great that despite how quickly Annie got angry earlier in the episode, she listens to Beth this time and is a lot more mellow with the news that Beth gave a lot of the money to Dean who once again wasted it.
Then there’s Beth and a lot happens with her. While the guilt of Boomer doesn’t really show with her in the same way, you can tell that what happened does weigh on her a little. When she tells Dean that she has more than earned the money Rio left her, it’s clear that the thought of what they did does haunt her like it does with Annie and Ruby. However, there are other things that she has to deal with in this episode. Dean once again messes up the business and she’s forced to try and use the fake money when she originally didn’t want to. She was all but willing to give up the keys to Kingdom but again, it’s not so easy to runaway from her new life. She tries her best though. She trusts Dean to use some of the fake money, and she even tries to become more involved in the Boland Motors business (and she absolutely kills it might I add!) but it’s all blown when Beth eventually realises that Dean doesn’t respect her and can never see her as his equal.
This leads to quite a big turn of events when, after realising that Dean doesn’t really know her or believe in her, she turns to Rio. While out for dinner with Dean, they go to a bar where we see that Rio is as well. When Beth excuses herself to the bathroom, he follows on behind her and the two proceed to have sex. There are a few things I loved about this, 1) Beth was clearly the one in control and the entire scene was all about her (especially when you look at the fact that we only ever see her reaction when they’re actually having sex), 2) this is going to open the floodgates and allow for more interactions between her and Rio that will ultimately adapt and deepen their relationship, and 3) the way it was filmed and how it originally looked like it was going to be skipped over only for us to get flashes of it while Beth is driving home with Dean. There has been so much chemistry between Beth and Rio since really early on in the show and they’re both stubborn characters so for something so bold to happen between them now makes a lot of sense and I’m really intrigued to see how things develop considering a lot of promo trailers show more soft touches and (almost) kisses between them
However, that’s not the end of it all. While at the dealership, Beth and Dean are surprised when Rio makes his presence known. He’s taken back the rest of the fake money and wants to strike up a business deal, he’ll provide everything while Dean cleans the cash using the dealership, but he’s not really asking. When it seems like Dean isn’t going to accept, Rio starts smashing the cars up until eventually Beth tells him that he can have anything he wants. We’re now at this point where she and Rio are once again working together and in this episode (as well as in a later one if you watch the promos) he refers to him and Beth as business partners. This is all going to be a whole lot different to what we’ve seen so far when it comes to their business relationships and no doubt their casual one night stand is going to have an impact too.
This also isn’t the only thing that Beth (and Ruby and Annie) are going to have to deal with because we did get a chance to touch in with Mary Pat. She hadn’t sold the women out when going to Agent Turner but simply wanted to make it plausible that Boomer would just simply disappear, the only problem is that one of her children gets her into trouble by declaring that she put their daddy in the freezer. From the promo for next week we see that she’s going to have no choice but to open up to Turner about everything and that is going to create a blip in events that will only make things more complicated for Beth, Ruby, and Annie. Whenever things seem to be going right for them, something ultimately goes wrong so I’m curious to see how this turn events is handled.