Barry Bergman is knowledgeable killer. We’ve identified this from the start, however the tone of Barry and his placement as a conflicted protagonist has enabled us to sympathize with him regardless. For a lot of viewers, the world of violent crime, cops and robbers, is summary. It’s fantasy, simple to get pleasure from from a spot of emotional distance. However on this week’s episode of Barry, the titular murderer crosses over into extra acquainted and visceral types of intimidation and terror. “Limonade” is a startling reminder that, major character or not, Barry is a foul man.
The Sopranos pulled this trick about as soon as each season. Mafioso Tony Soprano usually finds himself up in opposition to extra vicious, much less sympathetic mobsters like Ralph Cifaretto or Phil Leotardo who permit him to seem honorable or merciful by comparability. Absent their distinction, nevertheless, it’s simpler to shake from the spell of Tony’s private conflicts and see him for the monster that he’s. For the primary two seasons of Barry, Monroe Fuches has served the same objective; he was the unhealthy surrogate father determine who refused to permit Barry to go away his violent life behind. It’s was been doable to deflect a few of the blame for Barry’s homicide of Det. Janice Moss, which could by no means have occurred if Fuches had allowed him to give up within the first place. Now, although, Fuches is out of the best way, leaving Barry the hands-down worst individual on the present, and it seems that the 2 of them aren’t so totally different in any case. Barry acts out of pure, cowardly self-preservation, inserting his have to really feel absolved of his crimes above the well-being of everybody round him.
To start with, Barry’s perception that he can win Gene Cousineau’s forgiveness by serving to him get his appearing profession again on monitor is completely delusional. Barry didn’t price Gene his appearing profession, Barry murdered somebody. Gene has instructed him, to his face, what he’d have to do to start to make that proper in his eyes (“Both flip [himself] in, or fucking die”), however Barry’s not keen to do this and is as a substitute hyperfocusing on a second, completely unrelated drawback that he believes he can resolve. When Gene guarantees (at gunpoint) to maintain Barry’s crime a secret, Barry received’t settle for it, much less as a result of he doesn’t imagine him and extra as a result of merely being forgiven is not going to fulfill his guilt. He must do one thing to earn that forgiveness, simply not something that can price him his freedom, his popularity, or his life.
As a substitute, he passes the price onto Sally, who because the producer and star of a tv collection is in place to present Gene a task and jump-start his profession restoration. Actually, Sally has already tried to get Gene an audition, which is greater than anybody else is keen to do contemplating his lengthy historical past of abusive on-set habits. When Barry arrives unannounced to the set of Sally’s present, Sally explains that Gene is persona non grata within the enterprise, which Barry is unwilling to just accept. If Gene is unforgivable, then Barry is, too. Barry’s response to listening to “no” is to shift into full psycho mode, screaming at her and backing her up in opposition to the wall of a convention room. It’s a painful scene to observe, as Barry reveals himself to be precisely the type of abusive companion that Sally has been attempting to flee since earlier than we even met her. Their relationship has by no means been what it seemed to be, constructed on a basis of Barry’s lies, however up till now she has at the least been in a position to really feel protected. Now, that’s gone, and she or he slides proper again right into a behavior that she warns about in her writing—staying in a relationship and placing in additional effort as a way to attempt to win an apology that’s by no means coming.
Whether or not or not Sally acknowledges her dilemma as one ripped proper from her collection, Sally’s younger co-star and mentee, Katie (Elsie Fisher) positively does. Katie needs to do one thing about it, however since Barry isn’t an worker of the present and the encounter wasn’t technically illegal, she has no speedy recourse. Sally isn’t the one sufferer right here, as Katie has idolized Sally for breaking freed from abuse and rising as a strong lady in Hollywood, and now she should query whether or not or not the life she needs is even doable.
Given all of those grim happenings, there’s not a lot room for comedy this week. Even Noho Hank, normally Barry’s dependable font of levity, experiences heartbreak in “limonada.” Cristobal is compelled to finish their secret affair as a way to defend Hank from his Bolivian crime household, which has simply been bolstered with a military of elite reinforcements. Cristobal’s boss, Fernando (Miguel Sandoval), additionally occurs to be his father-in-law, and seeks to assist take away their Chechnyan rivals in order that Cristobal can return to his spouse and children. Now, Cristobal is within the difficult place of attempting to maintain Hank and his three cronies protected whereas averting Fernando’s suspicions, which requires the very form of selfless private sacrifice of which Barry doesn’t appear succesful. There are glimpses of different wholesome relationships sprinkled all through the episode: the opening shot, wherein Barry watches a pair share a nice dialog, and even the breakup of the couple with too many canine demonstrates an honesty that Barry and Sally desperately want.
The episode closes with Gene having escaped captivity and returned residence to his son and grandson, solely to search out that Barry’s gotten there first, with the information that he’s secured them each visitor roles on a success authorized drama. Barry points a quiet however lethal critical menace to Gene: Indulge his fantasy of being a loving surrogate household, or his actual household will endure the implications. Gene has no selection however to acquiesce, and lifelessly repeats “I really like you, Barry” upon request. Barry doesn’t want Gene’s love or forgiveness to be actual, he solely wants it to really feel good. The lens of the present, now connected to Gene’s expertise moderately than Barry’s, depicts this because the true horror that it’s.
This season isn’t just about Barry scrambling for forgiveness from Gene, and even from himself. He’s acquired to earn it from us, too.