Monday, June 26, 2017

As Craig Said, "Karma" Is a Bitch (Animal Kingdom; Season 2, Episode 2)

Nicky snorts a line and Craig asks her, "You really wanna do coke before you go to school?" Surprisingly, he doesn't do any himself: "I wanna sleep sometime in the next 100 years." Craig plans on taking downers to sleep until Nicky gets home later.

Nicky straddles his lap and plucks the joint from between his lips. Craig takes it back from her; mixing drugs is an art she hasn't learned yet. "Who needs school when I've got you, Professor Cody?" she purrs. They start kissing. Nicky stands up and pulls Craig toward the bedroom. Unbeknownst to them, the joint is still smoldering on the couch.

Lucy comes into Baz's kitchen, glad she didn't wake him up. He offers her coffee. Lucy would cook breakfast, "but all you have is protein powder." Baz likes Lucy being around. How about they go to dinner later? Lucy gives him a look. "What?" he says, "It's dinner."

It seems Lucy is like Baz's last hook-up; eating together automatically means they're in a relationship. "Maybe I just like watching you eat." says Baz. Lucy seductively bites into a breakfast sandwich she brought over. Baz puts it on the counter and picks her up. "You can eat it later," he winks. Lucy laughs and they start making out.

The bar owner is none too pleased with Deran for not having the $50,000; he promises he will by Monday. She reminds him she has other offers. Deran bets he's the only one willing to pay upfront in cash. "You can offer me a goddamn polar bear if you never plan on giving it to me," she says.

Deran will throw in an extra $1,000 for the wait. The bar owner is going to Hawaii next week to dump her husband's ashes in a volcano and needs the money before she leaves. Deran says she can keep the deposit if he doesn't come through, which is more than fair. "Don't mess with me," she warns.

Pope creepily sits on the edge of Lena's bed, watching her sleep. "Where's Grandma?" she asks when she wakes up. Pope whispers, "She's sleeping, so we have to be quiet." "Where's Daddy?" Supposedly, Baz asked Pope to drive Lena to school. He sends Lena to get dressed, looking under the bed for her shoes.

"Trying to kidnap my granddaughter?" asks Smurf. She'd prefer Baz take Lena to school; Lena hasn't seen him in four days. She glances at her eldest son. "What's she supposed to do with two left shoes?" Smurf tells him how important consistency is for children (says the woman whose kids all have different fathers that eventually abandoned them). She adds, "She barely knows you; you've been in prison half her life."

Pope doesn't take the opportunity to rant about how that was Baz's fault. Smurf gets Lena's backpack ready. The kid comes out of the bathroom, dressed for school. Pope has her shoes, Smurf her coat and backpack.

Nicky practices what I'm guessing are supposed to be "sexy" faces in Craig's mirror, arranging her hair different ways. She hears crackling in the living room. Surprise, surprise, Craig's couch his on fire! She tries to beat the flames out with a throw pillow.

When that doesn't work, she goes to the bedroom and shakes his shoulder. "Craig, there's a fire," her voice is barely audible.

"Morning," J says cheerfully. He has scrambled eggs and toast plated up for him and Smurf. She answers her phone. Nicky frantically tells her about the fire. Smurf asks where her middle child is. "He's passed out. I can't wake him up," says Nicky.

While she's talking, she fills a bowl with water from the sink and throws it on the couch. This does absolutely nothing to the flames, which have now spread to the blinds. Nicky hasn't called 911 "'cause I'm pretty high."

Smurf turns to J, telling him to call 911 and say there's a fire at Craig's address. Smurf asks Nicky if Craig is breathing. "Yeah, he's just sleeping. He hasn't slept in a couple days 'cause we've been...kinda partying." Nicky's still talking a mile a minute.

Smurf instructs Nicky to flush any drugs down the toilet. "It's getting bigger," Nicky sounds worried as she passes the living room. Smurf tells her to take Craig's gun out of his nightstand; when they leave, she needs to remember which bush she hides it in.

Smurf decides it's finally time to worry about Craig himself. She tells Nicky to throw cold water on his face. If that doesn't work, hit him in the face as hard as possible. Nicky's slaps barely make contact, meaning Craig doesn't notice them. She grabs his arm and tries to drag him out of bed; he faceplants into the carpet.

Pope and Lena are at Baz's house. Lena spilled juice on herself and wants to put on a new shirt before school. Pope asks what time Lena has to be at school. "I don't know," the kid shrugs, "Grandma Smurf just says, 'Time for school.'" In all seriousness, Pope says, "You need a watch." (Too bad there aren't any left over from last season's jewelry store heist).

Pope hears distinctly female laughter elsewhere in the house. He sees a bra and a pair of panties in the hallway. "Lena, let's go!" he calls. Lena has also heard the laughter and joyfully cries, "Mommy! Mommy!" She stops dead in her tracks, realizing Lucy isn't Cath. Baz comes out of the bedroom.
(Image credit)
"Lena, this is Daddy's friend Lucy," Baz introduces. He picks his daughter up and carries her outside. Pope fixes Lucy with a dead-eyed glare.

Firefighters walk through Craig's apartment, checking for hot spots. A paramedic tends to Craig. Nicky stands on the sidewalk, a police blanket wrapped around her for modesty since she wasn't wearing pants. Smurf starts chewing Craig out then and there, guessing there was enough cocaine in the apartment to earn him a lengthy prison sentence; he's lucky Nicky was there to save his sorry ass.

Craig gripes that he has a headache: "Why'd you have to get her to hit me so hard?" Nicky's pathetic little slaps didn't cause that; it was more likely clonking his head on the floor that did it. Smurf wishes Nicky had hit him hard, then asks, "Why is this shit still going on? Is that girl on birth control?" "Are you done?" Craig wants to know.

Smurf certainly is not. She tells him he's paying to have the apartment redone. Is she supposed to tell her insurance agent "that my idiot son and the teenager he's banging left a lit joint on the couch?" Craig rather insincerely apologizes. Smurf warns him not ask to move back in. Craig rides off on his motorcycle.

After dropping Lena at school, Baz lays into Pope about not sending a warning text.

J, Deran, and Craig cruise down the street in the Scout. "You smell like a bonfire," Deran observes, "All that smoke inhalation can't be good for you. It kills your brain cells. You don't have too many left to spare." He echoes Smurf's thoughts that it's good Nicky was around. They can talk in front of J because he's aware of what Nicky and Craig are doing. To his credit, Craig says, "I don't wanna be a dick about it."

J says he doesn't care. "You don't care that your girlfriend left you for this genius?" asks Deran. J reminds his uncle who broke up with who. Deran takes the opportunity to rib his brother about getting J's "sloppy seconds."

On a more serious note, Deran asks if J has enough money to move out of Smurf's house. Staying gives Smurf the chance to make J feel like he owes her. The kid shouldn't give Pope and Baz a reason not to trust him. "You stay there, you'll never leave," he advises, "Ask Craig." Craig jabs back: "Hey, asshole, you breast-fed 'til you were, like, 7." He starts trying to grab Deran's nipples through his shirt while he's driving.

Smurf conversationally asks how long Nicky has been living with Craig. According to Nicky, only a few days. Smurf shakes her head: "He sure left in a hurry. He could've given you a pair of pants." Craig told Nicky he was fixing a church's air conditioner with Deran. Nicky didn't know the Codys were religious.

Smurf offers to let Nicky live at the compound. "If it's not an imposition," the teen says with fake shyness. Smurf knows it would make Craig happy. Nicky chuckles to herself.

"You're not staying with me, by the way," Deran informs Craig, "You're filthy and I don't need the DEA banging down my door." "Did I ask to stay with you?" says Craig. Well, not in so many words.

Deran pulls into the parking lot at the megachurch. J gets out first. Craig takes off his necklace and puts on a white polo shirt that reads SANTIAGO VALLEY PEAK H.V.A.C. Deran, already wearing one, ties his hair back into a ponytail. He thinks Craig should have some gum to cover his bad breath. They grab bags of tools and clipboard, doing their best to look official.

Craig and Deran stop at the front desk in New Canticle's opulent lobby. They claim someone called their dispatch center about a funny smell coming from the air conditioner. The secretary doesn't see anything on the schedule. Deran lies that they have to fix some A/C in San Diego later and the rest of the week is booked; they wouldn't be able to come back until at least next Friday.

J heads downstairs. Pope and Baz park outside. The secretary shows Deran and Craig to the rooftop unit. Pope slips into the sanctuary (sidebar: I've been in smaller concert halls) and watches the worship band do a soundcheck.

On the roof, Craig muses, "Churches have all these programs to help people: homeless shelters, giving soup to people who are hungry." Deran asks if he's still worried about karma. Again, pretty sure that ship left port years ago. "If you can tell me that I'm not gonna end up, like, a cockroach, then fine," says Craig.

"Ripping off a church is gonna bring serious karmic vengeance." They should've gone with Deran's yacht wedding idea. Deran would've preferred that too, but Baz is stubborn and he needs money ASAP.

"Maybe that's why your apartment burned down; God knew you were thinking about robbing a church," says Deran. He adds, "Either that, or the lit joint you left burnin' on your couch." Deran is so sassy and I adore him.

Pope notices a pretty blonde woman helping with the sound check. He shyly averts his eyes when she glances his way.

The littlest Cody investigates the vents in the men's room. Baz goes to the church's security trailer, claiming he lost his wallet during Sunday service, giving his name as David Pratt. (Any relation to Chris)? The guard leaves to get the lost-and-found box. Baz takes note of the bank of closed-circuit TV monitors and texts "Go. Now" to J.

J goes down the hall with his hoodie pulled over his head and picks the lock on a door marked EMPLOYEES ONLY. J takes pictures of the inside of the room, which is lined with shelves and boxes. There's a safe behind the whiteboard and one cemented into the floor under a rug.

Baz keeps one eye on the monitors and sees what J's up to. "Sorry, no David Pratt," the security guard apologizes. He suggests Baz check the front office and gives him directions.

Someone who works for the church passes by just as J exits the EMPLOYEES ONLY room. J pretends he got lost on his way to an N.A. meeting (if you ask me, Craig should've posed as the addict). The guy tells J where to go and that the meeting isn't until noon.

Pope goes to the lobby and stands before a table of flyers and brochures. They advertise biweekly Bible study, a mission drive, and volunteer opportunities. "I don't actually have any musical ability. I just love hearing them play," says the blonde woman from the sound check. She introduces herself as Amy; Pope gives his birth name: Andrew.

Pope tells Amy he's looking for a new church. Amy asks where he went before. Pope clicks his teeth and says, "Sort of a non-denominational thing." That's also what New Canticle looks like to me; most denominational ones aren't that big or elaborate (at least not here in Kentucky).

Amy would be happy to answer any questions. In addition to being a part-time church employee, she voluntarily teaches Bible study. She'd love for him to come. Pope asks how many parishoners there are. Amy ballparks it around 1,500 for the mid-morning Sunday service.

Next month, New Canticle is having Mission Weekend. The church hosts parties and raffles to raise money for foreign missionary work. Last year, donations reached $300,000. "I'd love to be a part of somethin' like that," says Pope. Amy doesn't notice his odd, almost singsong tone.

Smurf calls her alarm company to get all the passwords and entry codes changed.

The boys map out the church. J shows his uncles pictures of the safe set in concrete. Craig would rather rob a bank now that the church has so many cameras...because that makes perfect sense. Besides, "people we know go to that church. I thought we didn't shit where we eat."

Baz tells him not to think of it as a church: "They're printing money. They got DVDs and T-shirts and merchandise." Craig wants to put it to a vote. Baz flatly refuses to rob another bank. Pope pipes up with, "If we wait three weeks, we can make 300K. Lady at the church says they do a mission fundraising drive." There are car washes, raffles, and "a fair with rides and shit." Last year's proceeds went to a hospital in Angola.

Craig is now even more worried about karma. Deran can't wait three weeks. Baz doesn't want to take the same risk for less reward. "If this is how this is gonna work, I'm done," says Deran. He can pull jobs on his own. "Go ahead. Go rob a liquor store," Baz challenges, sounding a lot like Smurf.

Deran storms out and Craig follows him. Baz sends J home; he and Pope can take over planning from here. Baz tells Pope they need to present a united front when the other guys are around. J can scout, but he isn't ready for a big-time heist. Whether they rob the church now or in three weeks, they need four people.

Outside, Pope asks Craig why Deran needs money so badly. Craig promised not to tell. Pope wants to know how much. Would Deran do something stupid to get what he needs? "He might," shrugs Craig.

Smurf goes to her storage unit, where she pulls a few bricks of cash and a huge diamond ring out of a safe.

Lucy comes home from shopping and packs to go back to Tijuana. She's been in California for several days and Baz never mentioned Lena is living with him. "Sometimes she stays here," says Baz. Lucy asks, "What's that even mean?" What happened to Catherine? Baz doesn't know; she just left. Lucy questions him in Spanish about why he isn't being honest.

Baz pounds the table. He can't deal with Lucy right now; he's trying to plan a job without Smurf and "the boys are ready to kill each other." Lucy thinks this is classic Baz, changing the subject and getting pissed off. "I had to look that kid in the face this morning and say, 'Sorry, I'm not your mother.'"

Baz is sure Lena doesn't even remember that. (I wouldn't count on it). Lucy says that's not the point. They're no good together and need to stay friends with benefits.

Deran leaves his apartment and throws a black duffel bag in the Scout. "When's the last time you scouted Union Bank?" asks Pope. They have at least three tellers now, plus digital security cameras. If Deran uses a gun, he'll do at least 6 years in prison. "Look, I need money. I'm gonna go get some. Isn't that what we do?" says Deran. Big brother Pope has a better plan and Craig's already agreed to help. Does Deran have a ski mask?

Later, Craig and Deran are sitting in a stolen SUV in a beach parking lot. Craig checks out a food truck's menu with a pair of binoculars, wondering aloud, "What kind of an asshole pays 18 bucks for a sandwich?" "Pope says they also sell molly out of the back of the truck," adds Deran. Don't tell him that; he'll just go for the drugs and not the cash.

Smurf goes to a Persian rug store and meets upstairs with a woman named Gia. She seems to be Smurf's fence. Smurf wants to sell the ring, which she stole a few years ago. She tells Gia about the "restructuring" because the "boys are gettin' very careless." Smurf trusts Gia to make the asking price whatever she thinks is fair and adds 5% to her commission.

Baz might be coming to the store soon. Smurf wouldn't dream of telling Gia who to do business with, but caution should be exercised.

The Farm to Curb food truck workers lock it up and drive it away. The boys follow it.

Baz has hired Joe, a PI, to look for Cath. The detective has found nothing in the last two months. Cath was still close to a couple of her former foster mothers, but they haven't seen her in years. No bank account, cell phone, email, or credit card activity. "If somebody wants to, they can get pretty good and lost."

Baz can't believe this: "3 grand gets me 'She hasn't checked her email'?" The PI suggests Cath could've changed her name and left the country. Joe needs another $5,000 to keep looking. Baz asks if Cath is dead. Joe replies, "I have no reason to believe that she is, but I have no reason to believe that she isn't."

Deran and Craig cut off the food truck, which rear-ends them. They jump out in ski masks, guns at the ready. They didn't count on the food truck workers being armed themselves; after all, they have to protect their drug supply somehow. They make a hasty retreat back to the car. Here's hoping Craig doesn't get shot again.

Pope rear-ends the food truck with a stolen tow truck. The food truck's tires pop and it tips over. The workers shoot at them again. "Hey!" Pope screams at his brothers, "Don't kill anybody!" "Tell them that!" Craig retorts. Pope tosses a flash-bang grenade into the truck and steals the money.

Nicky ambles into Smurf's kitchen, wearing a baggy T-shirt and sweatpants. J, doing his homework at the counter, recognizes the pants as his. "You don't mind?" Nicky's tone makes it plain she doesn't care how he feels about it, "I mean, you don't really wear these?"

They chitchat about the fire, how it was scary for Nicky but totally not Craig's fault. (That's actually true). J hasn't seen her at school lately. "I go sometimes, enough to graduate," she says, then asks, "Where is everybody?" J says his uncles aren't around much since they all had a fight with Smurf.

At a picnic table, Deran, Craig, and Pope toast to a job well done. "We never had any trouble when we did simple shit," says Deran, reminding Pope, "You went to prison 'cause of Baz." "No, I went to prison because a guard wasn't where he was supposed to be," says Pope. Deran knows Pope sees the way Baz treats him and Craig.

Pope knows them turning on each other is exactly what Mommy Dearest wants; he won't take her bait. Craig gives everyone their share from the lockbox. Pope immediately hands his to baby brother; he'll kick in whatever else he has to to make it $16,000 and Deran can pay him back after the church job.

Craig also gives Deran his share: "You don't gotta pay me back, man, but I need a place to crash."

Powerpuff Girls is blasting from Baz's TV. Baz asks his daughter to turn it down. Pope comes in and tells him Deran is back in for New Canticle. Baz mumbles, "I've been alone with her for three hours. I'm ready to kill myself." Lucy went back to Mexico.

They resume talking strategy for New Canticle. Lena ups the volume again. Baz loses his shit, smashing the remote and yelling at her. Pope tells Lena to get her shoes so she can go for a walk with him. "I've been asking her to turn it down for an hour!" Baz complains. Pope says, "She's 7. You put her in front of the TV all day. Maybe she's trying to get your attention."

Baz wants to know if Pope has any other parenting advice. Pope knows kids don't like being screamed at. He throws in, "Her mother left. You're banging some woman that she's never seen before in her mother's bedroom. It's not Lena's fault that your girlfriend doesn't like your kid, Baz."

"You don't know shit and you never will," says Baz, adding nastily, "No woman is ever gonna have a kid with you. Ever." Cue the Pope Stare.

Smurf sighs and looks morosely out into the rainy night. She flashes back to when her boys were little, playing basketball together in the pool.

Pope brings Lena to New Canticle and introduces her to Amy. The Bible study teacher shows the girl to the church playroom. "She's beautiful. Has your smile," Amy compliments Pope. He explains that Lena is his niece; he's been helping his brother out since his sister-in-law left him unexpectedly. Amy invites Pope and Lena out for ice cream after Bible study. That sounds good to Pope.

The bar owner tells Deran to turn the fridge way down when the health inspector comes. He shouldn't put off getting a tax ID number "or it'll take forever to get the liquor guy in here." This is gonna be harder than Deran thinks. The woman wishes she'd sold it sooner, but her husband loved the place. Some weeks, he worked 80 hours.

"Sid had a passion for big-titted mermaids," she muses. That is obvious. She shakes Deran's hand and gives him the keys.

Craig has a beer in his burned-out living room, surveying the damage.

Baz goes to Tijuana and knocks on Lucy's door. He wants to apologize for not telling her about Cath and Lena. "I don't need to know everything," she shrugs. Baz figures Cath left because she found out about Lucy and he refused to stop seeing her. Lucy seems to accept that and invites Baz to bed.

"I probably should've asked you before I told Nicky she could stay," Smurf says to J. Ya think?! "This is your house too. I want you to be comfortable." Are his uncles pressuring him to move out? J wants to stay and I don't blame him. A roof over his head, nice clothes, a pool, not having to worry about where his next meal is coming from? In his short life, J's never had it so good.

The phone rings. Smurf asks J to answer it. When J hangs up, he tells his grandmother, "That was some guy called Jake. He said that Manny died. The wake's on Thursday. Who's Manny?" Smurf replies cryptically, "He's an old friend." She asks if J wants to come with her on a road trip to the desert. He agrees. End of episode.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Rule #1: "Eat What You Kill" (Animal Kingdom; Season 2, Episode 1)

Last season: Joshua "J" Cody moved in with his grandmother Janine AKA "Smurf" after his mother died of a heroin overdose. He quickly learns his uncles are a robbery crew, headed up by Smurf. J and his uncles robbed Camp Pendleton military base. Craig started having sex with J's 17-year-old ex-girlfriend Nicky. Acting on Mom's orders, Uncle Andrew AKA "Pope" smothered his adopted brother Baz's baby-mama Cath with a pillow. He made it look like Cath left Baz, abandoning their young daughter Lena in the process.

We see Smurf wake up and grope around on her nightstand for last night's leftover vodka cranberry with a twist of lime. Elsewhere, Deran and Craig roar under an overpass on their ATVs (or four-wheelers, as they call them in my neck of the woods). Pope climbs up a nearby roof and cuts the padlock on the access hatch. Baz seems to be following a tour group around; the doors on the freight elevator read ANGEL CITY BREWERY. J is in the truck parked outside.

Watching Smurf put on her makeup, I can't help but think of one of my favorite Disney songs "Perfect Isn't Easy" from Oliver & Company. In her silk robe, Ellen Barkin perfectly channels the poodle who sings the song in the movie. But I digress.

Pope sneaks into the brewery and cuts off the security cameras. Baz and the tour group are off to do a beer tasting. He waits until they all move on, then meets up with Pope, who'd been crouched on the stairs. They go to a makeshift office and strap a safe onto a dolly.

Craig and Deran park their ATVs, the former shimmying up a ladder to open a grate. He passes Baz a black duffel bag full of tools. J sees a delivery truck pull up to one of the brewery's service entrances. He immediately texts his uncles to sound the alarm, then opens the console, where he's stashed his gun. To create a less lethal diversion, J drops two lit road flares into nearby dumpsters.

The delivery driver spots the flames and activates the fire alarm. We hear sirens racing toward the scene. J coolly drives away in the truck. Pope and Baz lower the safe through the manhole on a winch. Craig and Deran load the safe onto a trailer hooked up to one of the ATVs.

At home, Smurf is still primping in front of the mirror.

J puts dummy plates on the truck, along with magnetic signs from the LA Division of Water and Power. He drives through a fence to rendezvous with the others. A homeless man appears in the tunnel with his shopping cart. When Deran swerves to avoid a deadly collision, the ATV tips over. The trailer and safe also thud to the ground. Craig and Baz hastily right the ATV.

The four head for the truck, Pope riding tandem with Deran and Baz sitting behind Craig. They load the safe into the truck bed and toss a blanket over it. Deran and Craig ride away on their ATVs; Pope and Baz stay in the truck with J.

While Pope cracks the safe, Craig chugs some tequila, laughing to himself. Deran grabs the bottle and pissily asks what's so funny. "You remember when you and Pope duct taped this to that shopping cart when we were kids with the Roman candles on the side? Sent it down Quarry Hill?" asks Craig, "I still have a scar on my ass from when I bounced out of it." "You got off easy, man. I went off the cliff in that thing," says Deran, "I hit the lake like cement."

Pope tugs on the safe's handle. The fruits of the boys' labor look more like the inside of Al Capone's vault.

(Photo credit)
 "Oh, you gotta be shitting me," says Baz, looking at two small piles of money. Pope grips his head; he can't believe it either. In a fit of temper, Deran smashes the tequila bottle.

When the boys get home, Smurf is dishing out the traditional post-heist snack of apple pie. Baz drops their tiny haul on the counter. Deran, sporting a wicked scrape on his cheek, cracks a beer.

The Codys assemble in the living room to debrief Smurf. Deran slumps on the couch, holding an ice pack on his face. Pope deliberately sits with his back to Smurf. No one saw them at the brewery, which, according to Baz is "the only thing about the job that went right." Smurf praises J for his quick thinking in starting the fire.

"We're all okay, by the way," grumbles Pope. Deran thought there was supposed to be more money "north of 90 grand." Smurf flares her nostrils and breathes hard, staring them down. When she finally speaks, she says, "Let's go eat that pie." Pope is quietly incredulous: "We risked our lives for $500 and all she can talk about is pie." Deran gripes that $500 would've at least been an even split.

Pope wants Smurf to explain herself; they all pitched her other ideas for jobs and she shot them down. "One job goes wrong and you're all whining like a bunch of spoiled brats!" says Smurf. (It could be argued that they're all overgrown brats, but anyway..) "What about the jobs that raised you all your lives?"

The boys are still living off their respective cuts of Pendleton. Craig argues Baz is the one who planned that job. Pope says acidly, "Why don't you have another drink, Smurf? I wonder how many cocktails she had when she had the brilliant idea for us to hit a brewery." Smurf looks like she wants to slap him.

Instead, Smurf says, "Maybe it was your fault." They're the ones who thought no one used the northeast gate. Pope says no one did during their weeks of scouting. Do they even know they took the right safe? Yes, and it only had $3,000 in it.

Deran (correctly) accuses Smurf of trying to pit them all against each other. She steps in front of her youngest and starts shouting at him. Baz tries to get her to calm down (yeah, good luck). Smurf rounds on him: "I have to go pick up your kid at school...unless it was something you were planning on doing." Baz doesn't try to stop her, even though she's obviously drunk.

With Mom gone, the boys have a powwow out by the pool. "Why are we still letting her run shit?" Deran demands, "We should just kick her to the curb, man. We're not 12 anymore." Baz thinks Deran is making empty threats; last time he was that pissed, he disappeared to Belize for a few weeks and came right back home.

Pope says, "She doesn't give a shit about any of us. We know it; that's the most pathetic part." She just uses them. He's right, of course, but J gives Smurf the benefit of the doubt. Baz understands they're all pissed, but suggests they talk to her "calmly and with respect" about changing how they operate.

Pope has had enough of their mom's bullshit and will pull solo jobs if he has to. The others agree to talk to Smurf. Craig will go "surf it off" with Deran until Mom gets home.

At a seedy bar, Deran locks eyes with a topless wooden mermaid. A black woman sits next to him. Deran slaps a rubber-banded pack of cash onto the bar, $34,000 in all. He asks for more time; he can get the rest. "I wanna help you, kid, but it's gotta be the full 50 or else...there's nothing I can do," she says.

On her way home, Smurf visits Teddy, her inside man on the Angel City job. She wants to know what went wrong: "You said the brewery paid their illegals with cash." That's correct, but payday is the first Thursday of the month and today is Tuesday.

(Image credit)
Smurf dazedly wanders back to the truck.

Pope sits alone in the desert, flashing back to the night he buried Cath. He sifts sand through his fingers, looking mournful.

Back at home, Craig is watching a skateboard competition on TV while J does physics homework. Craig sighs when his phone buzzes: "Not again. How many times do I have to say the flu?" We see the conversation he's having. Nicky texted, 'Puking too?' Craig replies, 'Yeah, the whole deal.' 

Deran arrives and asks where Pope is. "If he shows, he shows. We don't need him," says Baz. Smurf comes in with Lena. The little girl asks if they can go to the park like Baz promised. Baz tells her to go in the other room and watch cartoons.

Smurf pours herself another vodka cranberry and sits at the table with them. Baz tells her Pope is out "buying a lamp or something" for his new place. He apologizes for the way they all acted earlier: "Who's to blame shouldn't be the point here."

Baz politely tells Smurf they want more say in choosing jobs, pointing out the obvious: "We're not kids anymore; we're grown men here." "Oh, I'm the boss, all right," she counters. Have they all been conspiring against her while she was out? If Smurf wasn't the boss, the three older men would "be in prison right now, or worse."

Smurf recites a litany of terrible things that could've happened had she not intervened: When Baz was younger, Smurf had to bribe a cop to get him out of a jam involving an ATM robbery. Deran got involved with the Hells Angels, shit went wrong, and the bikers "thought [you'd] do better without a tongue." She reminds middle child Craig of last season's naked chair-pissing incident.

Smurf angrily pounds on the table. Baz plays diplomat; they're being honest with her out of respect. They're the ones who take all the risks, so they should get a say in the jobs they pull. It's also unfair that Smurf decides the split.

Smurf lays even more guilt on her adopted son: "When you first showed up at my house, you hadn't eaten a meal in a week! It took me three months to get that lice out of your hair!" Baz yells back, "And not a day goes by you don't throw that in my face! How long exactly do I have to keep kissing your ass for?" "For the rest of your goddamn life," growls Smurf.

Baz adds that "Pope's not even here 'cause he can't stand the sight of you." He's also the person who tries to convince Smurf's biological children "that you're not the cold-hearted bitch you seem to be." Baz leaves the kitchen, followed by Deran with Craig on his heels. Throughout the argument, J has stayed in place and not said a word.

Smurf tells them to go ahead. She'll see how long they last without her. J watches as his grandmother's eyes fill with tears.

Craig snorts a line while Deran drives along in his Scout. The youngest Cody will never forget the look on their mom's face when they walked out on her. Craig thumps the dashboard with his fist and laughs, "No more sucking Mommy's dick!" Closeted Deran lets that pass without comment.

Deran tells Craig not to get his hopes up about everyone getting equal shares; Baz and Pope will be just as bad as Smurf. "We're just grunts to them." They need to come up with their own ideas, like a yacht job Deran's been contemplating.

"We also need to get J involved," says Deran, "Say what you want, the kid's got balls." J has to be confused after watching the fight; it'd be easy to get in his head. Craig asks how they can pull that off. Deran has the novel idea of being nice to J.

Baz tells Pope he should've come to the family meeting. Pope doesn't think that would've changed anything; in fact, it would've gone worse. "Unless you were gonna stab her in the face, it's hard to imagine," says Baz. Oh, don't tempt him.

They sit down at a bar and order beers. Baz has an idea for their next job: New Canticle, a local megachurch. They'll have J help "if he's willing to piss off Grandma." However it goes down, they have to give Smurf a cut. "She's got her building; she's not gonna starve," says Pope, adding, "I wouldn't give a shit if she did starve." He flat out refuses to pay her. Pope goes so far as to wish Smurf had "dropped me and Julia off at a firehouse door the day she had us."

At a gas station, Craig leans against Deran's truck, texting away. Deran comes out of the convenience store and puts something in the cooler. "The kid broke up with her. Why can't you?" he asks his older brother. Craig wants to keep her close because her dad helped them rip off Camp Pendleton.

Deran asks if Craig filled the gas tank. Nope, Craig's credit card got declined. Deran says, "So you've just been standing here not pumping gas?" Uh, pretty much. Deran tries his card, wondering if Craig forgot to pay the bill. Craig says that's Smurf's job. Deran's card works and he wants to pull a job before it doesn't anymore.

"Don't you have to get Lena?" Pope asks when Baz orders another round of beer. Baz shrugs, "It's not even late." Besides, babysitting is a good distraction for Smurf. Baz has still been seeing Lucy, his Tijuana mistress. Lucy doesn't know Cath left because "she'd be up here with a U-Haul in two minutes."

Baz is lonely and horny. He wants to try picking up the blond woman who's been eyeing him; Pope could flirt with her dark-haired friend. Pope declines and leaves the bar. Next thing we know, Baz is at the blond's house; she's rather enthusiastically having sex with him.

Smurf pulls up to the garage in her sports car. She lets Lena out of the backseat and tells her to go inside and get their movie ready. A man in his twenties or thirties is standing behind Smurf: "Manny said you'd still look good. You recognize me? I'm all grown." The guy, Javi, has left her 10 messages.

Javi wants to take Smurf to see Manny (whoever he is). Smurf invites Javi into the garage for a beer. When she opens the refrigerator, we see a pearl-handled revolver taped to the back of the milk carton. Smurf makes it plain Manny isn't getting more money from her; their deal is $5,000 a month like always.

"He's dying," Javi informs her. He's parked up the block. Smurf tells Javi he has another thing coming: "You don't hop my fence and tell me to get in a car." Javi more or less orders her to say goodbye to Manny. She will, but on her own terms.

When it seems a kidnapping might be impending, Smurf opens the fridge and reaches for the milk. Javi asks if Smurf sings Lena to sleep the way she used to with him. He walks away, adding, "You won't need that gun."

Deran parks the Scout by the bar he visited earlier. Craig asks if they're robbing it for termites. Deran scoffs that they aren't casing the joint. The bar's owner just died and the widow doesn't want the place. Deran needs cash to buy it. Craig immediately spots a problem with the place: "You can't even see the 'open' sign."

J leaves his bike outside, entering the house through the sliding glass door. Smurf is drinking again. "Can I still live here?" J asks. Smurf replies warmly, "Of course, baby." J is sure his uncles didn't mean half of what they said earlier. Smurf doesn't have a problem if he wants to do jobs with them, "but you can't be a spy if you want them to trust you. Or at least, you can't have them think you're one."

Smurf has a present for her favorite grandson: a credit card with no limit. "I trust you'll be responsible," she smiles. J doesn't know what to say other than thanks. When he moved in with Smurf, all he had was a backpack full of worn-out clothes, an old bike, and sneakers with holes in them.

Baz lies flat on his back in the woman's bed, alone. He pulls on his jeans and walks toward the sound of the running shower. When the blond realizes he's there, she clamps her arms over her bare breasts. Baz is hungry and suggests they go out to eat together. The woman rudely declines and tells him to let her shower in peace. Baz goes back to sit on her bed, clearly depressed.

Nicky power-walks toward Craig's place and starts banging on the door. Annoyed, he comes out of his room, pulling a shirt over his head. When he answers, Nicky pushes her way in, talking a mile a minute. She just had "an epic fight" with her parents because "Guam is really happening." She's been texting him about it.

Craig lies that he's been sleeping. Nicky's dad has accepted a new job running the sewage-treatment plant at a Navy base in Guam and wants the whole family to go with him. Craig gives her some advice: "Tell your dad to eat a bag of dicks and Guam can kiss your ass."

Nicky starts looking through the cabinets: "Do you have any tequila or coke? I'll take any altered state I can get right now." Craig keeps up his I-have-the-flu story; the doctor said he's still contagious. Nicky offers to heat up some of the soup she brought over. "I don't wanna get you sick," says Craig. Nicky asks him to text when he feels better and gives him a kiss.

When Nicky's gone, Craig takes the container of soup into his room and flops onto the bed. "Who was that?" asks the naked woman next to him. Craig says, "My nephew's girlfriend. You want soup?"

In her room, Smurf is wearing pajamas and smoking a joint while she plays checkers with Lena. Enter Baz. "I told you your daddy would come back...eventually," says Smurf. Baz apologizes for not telling her he'd be gone all night. Smurf sends Lena to pack up her overnight bag.

Baz lets his adoptive mom know she'll still get a 10% cut of their jobs. Smurf scoffs she hasn't needed anyone to take care of her since she was 11. Baz thinks it's the right thing to do "'cause you always took care of me." "You bet I did," says Smurf.

Before she can reiterate how much Baz owes her, Lena comes in, looking for her stuffed animal. Smurf thinks Tigey is by the pool; she'll help her look.

J rides his bike out of the garage, eating a cereal bar. When the gate opens, Deran is waiting for him. He tells the kid they're all going to Baz's to plan some things. J can't; it's a school day. Deran doesn't think it'll hurt to miss a day. Doesn't J want to be part of the robbery crew? He and Craig think he should be.

J relents. Deran puts his bike in the bed of the truck, saying, "I never went to school." "I can tell, man," J sasses.

In Baz's kitchen, Deran lays out his plan for robbing a wedding on a yacht. They'll wait until it's out at sea, "shake down the guests, kill the engine." Baz doesn't see how they can case it. Pope worries more about making a clean getaway in the middle of the ocean.

Baz wants to move ahead with New Canticle, like they were going to two years prior. Pope jabs at Deran, "Unless one camera and a fat guy is too much security for you." Craig breezes in through the sliding door, asking what he missed.

"These guys wanna hit a church. New Canticle," Deran tells them. Craig doesn't like the idea; it's too close to home. Besides, "ripping off a church? What kinda shit karma is that gonna be?" If Craig Cody thinks your plan is immoral, you really need to check yourself. Baz thinks it's a little late for any of them to worry about karma.

Lena interrupts, bringing Baz a picture she drew. Baz tells her to draw another. Lena asks if they can go to the beach, a reasonable request considering it's just across the street. Baz tells her no.

Deran wants to take a vote, megachurch vs. yacht: "J can be the swing." Everyone vehemently disagrees with that. Craig thought equal votes and shares was the new plan. Well, it's kinda hard to have equal votes when there's an odd number of people on your robbery crew.

Deran points at Baz and Pope: "Are you guys gonna be the tiebreaker?" Are they gonna change the rules on even splits too? In a word, yes. Pope feels if someone does more planning or takes more of the risk, they should get a bigger share. They argue about the finer points, like who gets to decide or what if not everyone is involved in the job.

"Daddy?" says Lena. Baz screams, "What?! Lena, how many times do I have to tell you? No beach today, not happening." Lena doesn't cry, but it's obvious she's stunned and hurt. Uncle Pope steps in; he'll take her if Baz says it's okay. Baz agrees; he clearly just wants the kid out of his hair.

Baz dismisses everyone but J. Baz knows everyone thinks it was smart of J to start a fire, "but I think bringing cops to the scene really screwed us." I don't know how things work in Los Angeles, but here in the South, PD doesn't roll with FD without a reason. Being lookout just means observing. J says, "Next time you're about to get caught, I'll just stay in the truck, right?"

Pope stands on the outskirts of the beach playground, watching the kids on the swings. One of the moms approaches Pope: "Your daughter's an expert. It's been, what, like an hour?" Pope asks if another kid on the swings is the woman's son: "He's--he's really good at that."

Playground Mom defies all parenting logic by asking this perfect stranger, "Could you watch him for a second? I just have to change the baby. I left the wipes in the car." Pope can do that, sure.

Still in her PJs, Smurf wraps up five slices of untouched pie. She sighs, holding back tears. Smurf opens the fridge and takes out several big packages of meat.

Lucy meets up with Baz at a bar, impressed that they're being so public: "What if Cath walks in with the guy she's cheating on you with?" Baz doesn't think she's coming back and he wouldn't take her back even if she did. How about they go back to his place? "Am I supposed to just jump at the chance?" asks Lucy, raising her eyebrows, "Is Cath's stuff still at your house?" She'll think about coming over once it's gone. Baz sighs again as his phone vibrates.

Deran goes to Craig's house and finds his brother snorting lines. "You're not doing that shit," he says firmly, "Stop it!" "Are you kidding me?" Craig yells when Deran knocks his mirror over. Deran thought Craig was taking a shower so they could talk more about the yacht. "I was gonna!" Craig insists.

"Showing up to Baz's all coked's not a good look," says Deran. I agree. Smurf and the others treat them like kids because Craig makes it easy. "Get your shit together, man! I'm sick of this! Responsibility!" Deran shouts. Not a word the Codys know a lot about, but Craig is pretty out of control.

At the same time, they get texts from Smurf, announcing meat loaf at 7:00. Craig snarks, "Well, better make sure she takes the first bite." (And also that they don't try to steal Pope's portion). This is a very shrewd move on her part. Smurf knows none of them can cook and the way to her sons' hearts is through their stomachs.

Nicky walks in without knocking, declaring, "I told my dad to eat shit. I'm not going anywhere." She plops down on the couch like she belongs there. Deran gives Craig an I-thought-you-two-broke-up look.

The older Cody boys arrive at the compound roughly the same time, even Pope. Baz is surprised he came. "I sorta had to. I've got Lena," says Pope, opening his car's back door. Baz, who clearly forgot about his own kid, mumbles, "Right." "Uncle Pope bought me ice cream," Lena chirps. Baz sends her in to say hi to Smurf.

Later, Lena plays inside while the adults finish dinner. Smurf is glad everyone still likes meatloaf. "I think we all had a pretty tough day yesterday. Now this is a family and that's never gonna change," she says, then calls for a toast, "May we all get what we want..." "...And never what we deserve," the boys chorus.

Smurf eagerly asks about their next plan, but no one answers. She understands the silence and offers help if they need it. Dutiful grandson J will help her serve dessert.

Elsewhere, a home health nurse changes an IV bag. She tells Javi, "He started screaming again. I upped the morphine on his drip." She steps out for a smoke. The bedside table is littered with prescription bottles. There's also a tape recorder and a small collection of tapes.

Pope stays outside at the table while the others help Smurf wrap up the leftovers. I'm surprised there are any with that crew. Baz comes out to take Lena home and thanks Pope for watching her. J goes to collect the rest of the dishes. Pope whispers in his ear, "Just be careful, man, okay?" J watches for a long minute as Smurf opens a fresh bottle of vodka. End of episode.