The Regime Episode 2: The first episode of HBO’s “The Regime” on Max introduced us to Chancellor Elena Vernahm of a fictional European regime. Shortly after appointing soldier Herbert Zubak to her team, Elena grew fond of him. It reached a point where he heavily influenced her opinions on geo-political matters with grave consequences. She also rejected a Cobalt deal with the USA to portray their non-dependability on this Western land.

Now, “The Regime” episode 2 shows Nicholas conspiring against Zubak, whose growing influence concerns him. Meanwhile, US Senator Judith Holt arrives at the palace to negotiate an agreement between their two countries.

Spoilers Ahead 

The Regime Episode 2 “The Foundling” Recap:

Previously, on “The Regime,” we witnessed Zubak’s (Matthias Schoenaerts) increasing influence over Chancellor Elena Vernham’s (Kate Winslet) mind. He saved her from an attack on her life. While she was worried about her sickness and allergies, he made sure to share things that seemed like their perfect antidotes. About three weeks later, we see her being at the mercy of his techniques to cure her illness. He illustrates the importance of the potato stream for its healing qualities. She accepts it as if that is god’s honest truth.

Elena considers these ‘country medicines’ to be better than the modern ones, thus furthering her point to reject Western influence. She preaches their importance to instill this agenda into the populace. The doctors, who have learned proven science and medicine, detest this change. But it doesn’t matter to Elena, who promotes Zubak as her Chief of Palace and Safety. Agnes (Andrea Riseborough) appreciates how Zubak has stopped Elena from obsessing over the mold. Still, she is concerned about Zubak’s growing stature.

What happens to Elena’s cobalt deal?

Since Elena opposed their dependence on the US, the cobalt deal between the two countries stalled for the time being. To resolve this issue, United States senator & the chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Judith Holt (Matha Plimpton) plans to meet Elena, seeking to protect American interests in her country’s cobalt resources. Nicholas (Guillaume Gallienne) worries about how their stalled deal would affect their relationship with global businesses.

Unlike them, Elena isn’t concerned even if the stalled deal affects their market. Minister Schiff (David Bamber) and Minister Singer (Henry Goodman) expect billionaire Emil Bartos (Stanley Townsend) to take matters into his hands because the botched cobalt deal would affect his cobalt mines. Emil tries to convince Elena to make a compromise with the US. He emphasizes the deal’s importance to the economy of a country as small as theirs.

How does Zubak influence Elena’s mind?

Zubak keeps using his peculiar methods to make Elena dependent on him. It begins to get on Nicholas’ nerves, who finds it highly alarming – more so to their marriage. Still, Elena lets Zubak decide what is good for her son’s health. He becomes her confidant by helping her get rid of the ‘poison’ from her body. Worried about this, Nicholas plans to distance Zubak from her. He tries to convince her that Zubak is a bad influence. However, due to Elena’s lack of concern, he meets Schiff, Singer, and Laskin (Danny Webb) to help malign Zubak’s image in Elena’s eyes.

What do the ministers figure out about Zubak’s past?

The Regime Episode 2 "The Foundling" Ending Explained
A still from “The Regime” Episode 2 “The Foundling”

Laskin tells Nicky about his research into Zubak’s violent and particularly controversial past. Before shooting down the protestants, Zubak had a history of hurting people around him – including his mother. The ministers worry that Corporal Zubak’s prominent position can affect their futures. Unlike them, Nicky does not think childhood history is enough to prove Zubak’s untrustworthiness. Meanwhile, Zubak starts having strangely sadistic dreams, including him with Elena. So, he hurts himself. Agnes notices his wounds and helps him clean them. He requests her not to let Elena know anything about it.

The Regime Episode 2 “The Foundling” Ending Explained:

What happens during Judith Holt’s visit to the palace?

Judith Holt arrives at Elena’s palace, hoping to resolve the issues between their two countries and to fast-track the cobalt deal. She marvels at the Vernhams’ display of enormous wealth. Still, she decides to speak rather frankly about the deal. She talks about their shared values about some global affairs and believes minor disagreements should not cause any issues.

Elena points out how the US has used them over the years, and Judith retorts by pointing out the share of investments in exchange. Their back-and-forth reaches a point where it gets on Elena’s nerves. Judith offers a ‘reset,’ which would allow Elena’s country to have access to multiple benefits from the US—including a full NATO member status. Slowly and steadily, Judith takes the upper hand in their discussion. It makes Elena uncomfortable.

So, she glances at Zubak in a way that he would get a hint to proceed with his methods. The very next moment, he walks pretty close to Judith to intimidate her. It affects her speech and makes her fumble. Elena sees this as a success of her strategy. She then walks Judith to another part of the palace, saying their room is stuffy. Soon after, Zubak locks Judith in a room with him. He makes her sense what it feels like to have no control. Scared by this, Judith immediately leaves the palace and the country.

What happens to Emil Bartos?

After Judith Light departs from their country, Elena announces a press conference to publically humiliate billionaire Emil Bartos. She uses Bartos’ past remarks and uses them against him while proving herself as the one who cares about people. Meanwhile, the ministers find videos showing Zubak torturing himself. They think it will help make Elena lose her trust in him. But Nicholas realizes that it isn’t nearly enough. He thinks they should accelerate Zubak’s rise to make him fall in her eyes. So, the ministers find a story that can help in this matter.

The ministers convince Elena that Zubak shares a chromosomal link to the Foundling – one of Central European settlers. So, she decides to use their impressive shared genetic heritage to reclaim their destiny in Europe.

<< Previous Episode

The Regime Episode 2 Links: IMDbRotten TomatoesWikipedia
The Regime Episode 2 Cast: Kate Winslet, Andrea Riseborough, Matthias Schoenaerts, Hugh Grant, Martha Plimpton, Guillaume Gallienne
Where to watch The Regime

Similar Posts