Lucky Hank (Season 1), Episode 6 Recap & Ending Explained: The last week’s dinner episode of ‘Lucky Hank’ explored the cracks in Hank and Lily’s relationship. After only alluding to Hank’s neglect of Lily’s career in the episodes before, it finally brings this theme to the table (no pun intended!) The reason was her job offer at the Arlyle School in New York. He, however, was adamant about not moving to the city. So, it creates tension between them throughout the day. Finally, the simmering tension explodes in the end when he suddenly breaks down in tears. It is clear that this emotional eruption is due to his childhood traumas that result in his fear of abandonment.
After making it clear, the latest episode deals with Hank’s relationship with his work or ‘work’ in general. Hank joins Tony for an academic conference while his father has planned to come to Railton on the same day. Lily is left with mending the relationship conflicts between Julie and Russell.
Lucky Hank (Season 1), Episode 6 Recap
Episode 6: The Arrival
Earlier, we saw Hank (Bob Odenkirk) receiving the news about his father’s plan to move to Railton. Hank was absolutely against this move. Besides, he learns that his mother – Laurel kept him in the dark about her communication with his father for years. Hank felt betrayed and, thus, sent an angry voice message to Henry Sr. not to come to his town. He thought it would be enough to make Henry Sr. stay away.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t work out. Hank goes outside Laurel’s house to see his father arrive at her place. He looks at his father from his car parked in some distance, trying to muster the courage to confront him in person. Hank wants to ask why he did not bother to come to his wedding, never met his only granddaughter, or why he left right after his son tried to strangle himself to death. Alas, Hank drives away without saying a single word.
Later at home, Hank goes to take a shower to realize that Julie (Olivia Scott Welch) is at home. Lily (Mireille Enos) says that Julie came late at night but did not tell her why. Hank jokes about how he should have turned Julie’s room into a gym so she would have never thought of returning. Lily stops her research for a New York residence to entertain him.
That’s when Laurel comes to their house. She asks Hank why he sent that angry message because it caused his father to refuse to stay in town any longer. Laurel asks Hank to join them for the weekend, but Lily chips in with her support to Hank. She says he is planning to attend an academic conference during the weekend. Laurel calls it insignificant and believes that Hank should prioritize meeting his father over it. But Hank does not budge. Therefore, she leaves.
Turns out, Hank made up an excuse for that conference to bail on meeting Henry Sr. However, it does not leave the intimidating presence of his father in his mind. So, to snap out of this rabbit hole of wallowing in self-pity, Hank calls Tony (Diedrich Bader) and offers to join him for his talk at the conference.
Tony is looking forward to his lecture at this event, while Hank looks at it just as a way to get away from a dreadful encounter with his father. He does not care about any of the people who have come there to talk or discuss and finds them utterly mediocre. He notices Gracie (Suzanne Cryer) as one of the attendees and feels even more embarrassed to join the conference. Gracie, meanwhile, enjoys her fame for getting her poem published in The Atlantic.
Later, Hank sees a woman about his age and follows her. From his expression, it seems like he knows her from somewhere before. Tony notices that and follows him. He stops Hank from walking on that slippery slope – thinking that he is trying to woo this woman due to his marital issues. Anyways, Hank does not interact with her. He sits at a distance and sees what topic she is supposed to give a lecture on.
Hank goes back to his room and laments about how hotel rooms once fascinated him. Now the youth has faded, and he can only think of all the losers who must have seen such rooms as cozy luxury. As a viewer, you can’t help but see Hank seeing his naïve young version as one of these losers where hope was still present – where even small joys like this excited him. Now he is dejected from reality and cares for almost nothing.
Later that day, he goes to the spa and assumes an old man is his father. Hank asks him why he abandoned his family. Henry Sr. starts to gaslight him, i.e., makes Hank feel that it is his fault to complain. Right after, Hank realizes it is just a random old man and cringes at the man being awfully relaxed. And so, he leaves.
At night, Hank cannot sleep due to some outside noises. So, he calls Tony to join him for a drink. He had no idea that Tony’s lecture was supposed to be the next morning. Still, as a buddy courtesy, he joins Hank for a glass of soda and vodka. Hank overhears professors living in their bubbles, proud of their small accomplishments. He jokes to himself how they will never rise above it. He pulls off a prank by telling them that a virus has spread in all the computers from the hotel through wifi, and the ones who use certain software are its victims. They better have prints, or they are fucked.
Hank gets amused by himself and goes back to his room. But still, he can’t fall asleep. He goes to the bar to find the same woman that he followed before. Only this time, he goes to speak with her. At first, she thinks that another middle-aged professor is hitting on her. Hank mentions Henry Sr’s name, which instantly puts a smile on her face. She assumes Hank is also his pupil and praises Henry Sr’s enlightening guidance to her. Hank can’t help but reveal that he is Henry’s son.
Apparently, this woman had an affair with Hank’s father, and Hank wanted to speak to her because of it. He asks whether Henry Sr cared for anything apart from himself. She tells Hank to ask that himself. Hank leaves the cafeteria and walks up to the room where Gracie is speaking with a few other poets. Attendees were only a handful, and thus, Hank pities her. He believes that she is oblivious to her irrelevance, unlike him, who is aware of it and is better just by that knowledge. Who reads poems these days? Do poets get limelight-filled coverage? He knows the answers and, thus, considers himself to be a realist.
Back in the cafeteria, Hank meets Tony, who laments his failure of a seminar. He shared old research on the topic he was supposed to lecture on and made a fool of himself. He also became a victim of the hoax that Hank spread among the professors. Hank laughs about why he cares so much about it now when he didn’t before. He believes Tony did not spend his years studying his subject of expertise but rather was fooling around with women.
Tony feels awfully betrayed by Hank’s remarks. Is that all Hank thinks of him? He wonders. He calls out Hank’s dejectedness – how Hank has stopped caring about everything, be it his family, his writing, or his job. Hank thinks he and Tony always joked about people who cared about irrelevant things or the ones who cared, period. Tony makes him see how it is just his projection.
Hank makes a detour in the game room and spends some time playing with a kid, enjoying being a father in this scenario. In the next few shots, the kid is absent, but Hank keeps playing on the pinball machine all by himself in the room. He wants to win it so badly. Did he forget to care about little joys? Did his hurt make him incapable of having any emotion that isn’t laced with irony? So many thoughts and zero direct exposition. The writing keeps excelling at this.
Meanwhile, back at his home, Julie starts packing her stuff and putting it in her car. Lily assumes that she is moving out for good. Julie rather took Lily’s offer seriously and is looking forward to living with her in New York. She is angry at Hank for offering Russel the Bartender’s job. Since it often keeps him away, Julie thinks he is cheating on her. Lily points out the absurdity of her impulsive decision – to leave her marriage over nothing. Julie, however, looks forward to the comforts of living with her mother.
The next day, Lily decides to have a conversation about it. She is against Julie wanting to move to New York just to be away from Russell. ‘Aren’t you doing the same with Dad’ Julie asks. Lily gets flustered and says that their argument was over small things and that her New York plan has nothing to do with her wanting to separate. Since Julie keeps inciting her, Lily drives her to have a conversation with Russell. Again, Julie brings back Hank’s topic, and Russell agrees with her concern.
Lily ends up revealing that Hank acted up because of his childhood trauma of neglect and says how his emotional breakdown had nothing to do with their marriage. It makes Julie and Russell want to lecture her further on emotional maturity. Lily gets mad at the naïve souls speaking about this topic and reveals all that Julie complained to her about Russell. It ends up in a hilarious, chaotic back-and-forth between the three of them, which leads to nowhere. The subtle yet striking ironies are hard to miss.
On the other hand, before leaving, Gracie finds Hank and thanks him for not heckling her during her discussion. Instead of insulting her, he shows genuine concern about the lack of crowd for her show. He realizes that she knows its irrelevance and keeps doing the work irrespective of it. When did he lose this drive? Did he have any, to begin with? So much to process. Anyhow, Tony drives him back to his house and leaves without saying a single word.
While having a meal with him, Lily blabbers on and on about Julie and her marriage which leads to nowhere. Or maybe it does – about how she does not want to make a big deal out of small things as Julie does. Julie also said how she does not want to end up like Lily, regretting her life choices when it’s too late. It stings Lily, and Hank has understood that about his wife for years. Rather, he registers it openly now that he has become open to caring about others. He says he is in on the New York plan and leaves a bright smile on Lily’s face. She starts eagerly showing him the shortlisted apartments. He stops her and says that he needs to see his father before he leaves. Despite Lily’s concern, Hank is certain that he wants to meet Henry Sr.
Lucky Hank (Season 1), Episode 6 Ending Explained
Hank gets into his mother’s house and sits next to his father. We see Henry Sr for the first time. But he does not seem intimidating, but rather tired due to his old age. Hank asks his mother to leave him alone with his father for a bit. She reluctantly leaves. Then, Hank starts expressing all his bottled-up anger toward his father. Hank also questions why he abandoned his family. Henry Sr explains how his new job was better for his career, and Hank cannot digest his absolute apathy. How does that justify leaving his son and his wife?
Henry Sr, however, keeps mentioning himself and Hank in the third person. He also says that his son, Hank was a very stubborn boy and demanding. Hank senses something strange in his father’s behavior. He starts asking about general details about what day of the week it is or who the president is. He quickly registers that his father has started losing his memories. Hank notices his mother, almost noting through her gaze – ‘This is why I wanted you to meet him.’
Hank, however, remains frozen during his interaction. In his stilted face, you notice the signs of his realization – ‘It’s too late now. The moment has gone when you could have confronted him and asked for answers. At least you could have made him see his wrongs and made a case for yourself. Now it is too late, and you can’t even have that satisfaction.’ Then, there’s another side of me who looks at Hank’s devastation as his epiphany about how he wasted his life over caring about this man’s opinion of him only not to get any closure.