With three episodes remaining, Billions truly needs to satiate the viewers’ expectations. And while one might argue that the expectation is of Axe finally facing off against Prince, it’s more Axe’s interactions with his peers at his old stomping grounds. There is something weirdly soothing about Damian Lewis’s chomping of scenery that makes you root for him. It is the lesser evil to bet itself on, and while there is a sneaking suspicion that once the show ends, it will move back to the original status quo of the first season. But considering how this episode stretched Axe’s return to the actual battlefield, it looks like the writers still have some gas left in their tank.

Billions (Season 7) Episode 10 Recap:

Episode 10 – Enemies List

So what my fear had been in the last episode has already come true because the episode opens with Axe being met by President-contender Mike Prince at Haddon Hall. He has flown across the pond and very eloquently threatened his “avowed enemy” not to cross him because if he does, the consequences would be faced by the people he cares about, in this case, Wendy. It’s hilarious that when Chuck calls Axe for the “big favor” that he had teased two weeks ago, that was immediately in the middle of their confrontation. With Axe choosing to cut the phone, stating, “Now is not the right time,” it becomes a technique by the storytellers to keep him on the sidelines for a while longer. But then again, Axe realizing that Chuck calling means that the proverbial fan is hit, awakens a sleeping dragon. Threaten Wendy Rhoades at your peril, and Axe is now well and truly incentivized. But he is in a bind.

Because for once, it seems Prince has truly caught Wendy in a binder, something no one can extricate her out of. At the moment, being the CEO of Mental has given Wendy access to the books of the organization, and their financials look shady. Calling in favor of Rian once more, Rian looks through and realizes that the mental health betterment app is a scam as the number of patients shown in the statistics are all cooked numbers. This means it is a highly proportional scam to the tune of medical fraud, which could land Wendy in jail. And yes, it will be Wendy in jail even though the events occurred before her appointment, as there is a fine print in the clause that states that the CEO would be liable if the company is found guilty of any wrongdoings. But again, when Wendy had signed the contract, she hadn’t read the fine print, like most normal individuals, and this is exactly what Prince had been banking on when he “blessed” her appointment to this company.

Back at the Anti-Prince Front at the Rhoades office, which now includes Ira Schirmer, Rhoades Sr. is trying his hardest to listen to their plans and offer up his opinions (honeytrap, for one). What is hilarious is how much both Wags and Rhoades Sr. get along, but it isn’t long before they realize why Axe is hesitating to take his first move. On the London side of the equation, Taylor has arrived at Haddon Hall, having left their $650 million to help Axe find a loophole to extricate Wendy from this situation. But again, with every methodology and backdoor they try to enter, Prince and Taylor are unable to hack it. It’s a good storytelling tactic to raise the stakes so that when the catharsis occurs, it’s all the sweeter. But at the cost of raising Axe to the pedestal, it makes characters like Chuck and Ira completely helpless, especially when Wendy tries to plead with them to find a loophole, and they are unable to—except point out that she would be imprisoned for 35 years.

So an encrypted Facetime to Axe by Wendy, and while Billions never blatantly submits to fanservice, asking for Lewis’s Axelrod to effectively save America’s democracy is a little bit laughable. The guy is a hedge-fund mastermind who has been driven out of his country by a bigger opponent. But his buildup is almost reminiscent of the Justice League waiting for their Superman to emerge. But while Axe is taking Taylor’s advice to heart, stewing in his rage and listening to Wendy talk about the current misdeeds Prince had committed, the one about Prince letting a climber he had been trying to rescue get taken by the Chinese suddenly sparks a light. Now he has an opening and he calls Chuck; as he outlines his plan, even Chuck is skeptical but agrees.

Billions (Season 7) Episode 10 Recap1
A still from Billions (Season 7) Episode 10

Thus, we have Chuck coming to the MPC, essentially raising a white flag and revealing that he has documentation to release Kai Huang Liu (the NFT scammer from Episode 4) back to Taiwan, and Chuck is ready to take all the heat from this end, such that Prince is insulated. Prince believes that Chuck did it to secure his job once the new president is elected. Chuck doesn’t argue, knowing that the “big night” is about to drop a bombshell.

Elsewhere, as a subplot, we see Rian realizing that she is not cut out for the game that is being played here, the Darwinian mode of survival, until her conversation with Victor, where she is convinced by him that the only way to work is to keep on working irrespective of your morality at play. A similar form of conversation occurs between Sacker and Amanda Torre at the “Women Criminal Law” breakfast, where Sacker is subtly positioning Torre to take her place once she begins her congressional campaign. While the Rian storyline of the existential dilemma has been developing throughout the season, this relationship between Sacker and De Torre seems to have come out of nowhere.

Billions (Season 7) Episode 10 Ending Explained:

Finally, the big night at the Lincoln Centre, where U2 is holding a concert specially for Prince’s electoral campaign. As the Prince camp, decked out, walks in, they are suddenly stopped by a Slayer-jacket-wearing Bobby Axelrod. And Bobby Axelrod is not ready to go down. He reveals that he has brought a friend, Derek—the same Derek who had been left by Prince in Chinese custody. Axelrod had managed to extradite Derek to the USA on trading with Huang Liu, the NFT scammer who had been wanted by the Chinese government as well.

With that last masterstroke, Axelrod stops Prince’s monologue about putting Wendy behind bars by reminding her that Derek is more than happy to be called into interviews to reveal every salacious detail about the open marriage of Andy and Michael Prince. Prince would shrug it off, except according to Bobby, voters don’t vote for a cuckold of a president. (That might not be historically accurate, but from an optics standpoint, it’s literally a low blow.) Thus, Axe presents the deal, destroying any evidence linking Wendy to Mental’s financials and removing Wend from his crosshairs. And if Prince wants Derek to be taken off the board permanently, it would be useless, as Axe already has his video testimony.

As Bobby Axelrod enters the Rhoades household after that confrontation, with Chuck almost cheesily proclaiming, “Thank God you are here,” things are now set for a battle between good (maybe?) and evil. Prince now has an opponent who can match toe to toe with him, and thus, Prince wants to “shift to cash” or clear out their entire portfolio. They are at war, and they need to prepare for a siege. It’s still hard to buy Axe as the one person who can save them all, the super savior of America—the same guy who, mind you, bet against the stock and helped reap the benefits after 9/11 occurred. But hey, with Lewis playing it and with only two episodes, let’s enjoy it as much as we can.

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Billions (Season 7), Episode 10 Links: IMDb
Billions (Season 7), Episode 10 Cast: Paul Giamatti, Damian Lewis, Maggie Siff
Where to watch Billions

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