My father is out for blood . . . However he goes about it, I assure you it will affect the Republic.
This episode does some great flashbacks to the Grant governership and I really liked how it continued to deepen Mellie as a character. Bellamy Young has always been great in the part, but this season in particular the show has really given her a chance to shine by getting deeper and deeper with the character. I liked the running gag of the coffee; it’s about time they let Guillermo Diaz do more comedy – as grim and powerful as he is in his tragic moments, I still remember that episode where he went on a date way back at the beginning of season two. It all builds to Olivia’s gut-bustingly funny line. Oh, yes, a word for Gregg Henry for his cameo here as Hollis Doyle; he’s always a pleasure to watch. But in many ways, this episode kind of feels like filler. Most everyone is just kind of marking time; Cyrus was looking for Publius last episode and he finds him next episode; Rowan was plotting last episode and he’s still just plotting here; Jake and Olivia were having a rough patch and their relationship doesn’t change at all until the episode after this one; David and James were scared and unsure last episode and nothing changes in that dynamic until next episode. Anyway, this one’s still fine, but it’s not as great as the show has been. 2 ½ stars.
tl;dr – episode has some small pleasures, specifically in the Mellie plotline, but it’s mostly just marking time until the show can really kick into gear in the rush to the finale. 2 ½ stars.