Bobby has a serious ax to grind with a new rival in 'Billions'
This has been one of my favourite shows since the first season.
Aside from the powerful casting of Damian Lewis (Bobby ‘Axe’ Axelrod), Paul Giamatti (Chuck Rhoades), Maggie Siff (Wendy Rhoades), David Costabile (Mike ‘Wags’ Wagner), Asia Kate Dillon (Taylor Mason) and Condola Rashad (Kate Sacker), the script is superlative.
For the first four seasons, the storyline centred on the all-consuming war between hedge fund king Bobby and disgraced politician, Chuck.
These two went for the jugular and showed no mercy to each other. In this world, where the stakes are high as stocks are bought and sold, there is much sabotaging, blackmailing and quid pro quos going on.
That Chuck’s wife (now soon to be ex), Wendy, is in the employ of Bobby and wields much influence with him, infuriates him. It explains their on-again-off-again relationship throughout the series as the S&M- loving Wendy is no pushover.
Over the seasons, the writers got creative with the story arcs. They eventually experimented with Bobby and Chuck burying the hatchet while building loyal employee Taylor into a formidable foe. This season is a minefield of deception.
Chuck is once again vying to take Bobby down, with insider information provided by Taylor.
Taylor offers to help him by returning to work for Bobby. But, Taylor, is no one’s puppet. Her business savvy is offset by a genius mind.
In fact, Taylor is very much like her former mentor Bobby - she hates losing as wants to rule the roost, at any cost. The non-binary actor is one of my favorites. She plays an emotionless ball-buster, who values loyalty, with commendable finesse.
This brings us to the upsets this season, aside from several characters wanting to settle scores, that is.
There is a new rival in town - Mike Prince (Corey Stoll). Aside from initially misleading Bobby by artfully securing the Vanity Fair cover, which was earmarked for Bobby, he has shown his real intentions. And Bobby is not only up for the challenge - he wants to show Mike up in his own playground.
Battle lines are now drawn and Bobby, after that insightful cleansing ritual celebrating him reaching his $10 billion mark at the start of the season, has his eye firmly on the enemy's next move.
For plenty of scandalous dramas, wheeling and dealing, political subterfuge and steamy sexual encounters offset by sporadic moments of dysfunctional family relations, you definitely want to tune into "Billions" this season.
Billions 5 airs on M-Net (DStv channel 101) on Tuesday at 10pm.