TV Show Review

TV Review: RAY DONOVAN: Season 2, Episode 10: Volcheck [Showtime]

Liev Schreiber Ray Donovan Volcheck

Showtime’s Ray Donovan Volcheck TV Show Review. Ray Donovan: Season 2, Episode 8: Volcheck was an episode whose centerpiece moment was about FBI Agent-in-Charge Tony Volcheck (Kip Pardue).

The Volcheck focus had three key moments: 1.) the past. 2.) the present, and 3.) the future. The Past – Much like his rant in Irish Spring, FBI Special Agent Ed Cochran (Hank Azaria)’s vitriol spewing moment was humorous but in Volcheck it was illuminating as well. ASAC Volcheck learned that his wife and Cochran had been having an affair long before Scrabble Night. Making Volcheck FBI Agent-in-Charge had given Cochran the opportunity to bring that relationship out into the open (so to speak). The Present – Volcheck got what he wanted and was promoted into the position that he wanted, just not where he wanted. He was effectively banished. The Future – Cochran was accurate and Volcheck knew it: Megan Volcheck (Andrea Bogart) would leave or would eventually leave Tony if she was forced to exit Los Angeles for the middle of nowhere. All three of these key moments were ASAC Volcheck’s tipping point.

Volcheck’s suicide was a surprise and the writers of Ray Donovan placed into it an emotional variable that made it better than it normally would have been otherwise. When Volcheck looked at Cohran’s wife (Sherilyn Fenn) and he saw her emotional state, the pleading in her eyes (that he would be hurting someone innocent by taking Cochran’s life), he made another decision. I don’t know if Volcheck walked into the restaurant planning on killing himself but that was how it played out.

One thing is for certain: Cohran will never be confirmed as the head of the FBI for the United States. The vetting processors will immediately want to know: 1) why Volcheck pointed a gun at Cohran’s head, 2.) what happened between them to cause such animosity, 3.) Why he killed himself in front of Cohran, and 4.) what led Volcheck to want to commit suicide? Where did that hopelessness and anger come from, the vetters will wonder. They will look at Cohran’s decision to transfer Volcheck to the middle of nowhere and ask why that transfer order was placed for the man he had made his second-in-command? Why transfer Volcheck down there (where he has no family and no connections) when Cohran was leaving and could have made Volcheck his pick for that spot? All of these questions will make the situation between Volcehck and Cohran very suspicious to investigators and vetters.

In the end, Volcheck may have proved himself smarter than Cohran had ever imagined.

The sexual and emotional leverage Abby Donovan (Paula Malcomson) employed to get her way with Los Angeles Police Detective Jim should not have been effective. He just met her (they have been seeing each other for less than a month) and already she is asking him to murder for her. The Merovingian (The Matrix Revolution) said that madness and love have many of the same characteristics, chief among them being a loss of logically reasoning. This is exemplified by Detective Jim’s eventual decision. He was “rewarded” for his decision though, like a high school quarterback would be in the front sit of his car after winning the big game.

Abby asking Jim to kill for her instead of Ray bespoke of how far Abby and Ray’s relationship had degenerated and where Abby’s heart currently resided. She didn’t believe that the same ploy (if you don’t do this for me, we’re through) would work on Ray (because of everything that had happened between them recently), which is why she didn’t try. Detective Jim, however, was a different story.

Kate McPherson (Vinessa Shaw) questioning Ray Donovan (Liev Schreiber) about his molestation while in the midst of coitus was the strangest and most inappropriate question (and timing for a question) the viewer may have ever heard one person ask another person. How does that question ameliorate what was transpiring i.e. he was between her legs, inside of her, condomless. A disturbing question like the one Kate McPherson (Vinessa Shaw) posed would usually repulse the person that it was directed at. Ray had a different reaction and it was the closest Kate had probably ever come to being raped (though she reacted as if she had been).

This conclusion provided the viewer with another certainty in the Ray Donovan world: Kate McPherson is going to go back to the safety of Boston as quickly as possible, get the retraction published, and publish the article that Ray and Cochran have been dreading.

That article will be the nail in Cochran’s FBI-career-coffin and the story of Ray, his family, their past, and his father will be exposed to the world. Ray never would have reacted to the molestation question the way he did if it weren’t true. Kate will know that. The question is: will she use those past events in the tapestry of her story?

“The Job” Mickey Donovan (Jon Voight) has dreamed up will end badly. There are too many variables at play. The “cracksman” on the team has not busted a safe in years and has breathing problems. The rent-a-cop at the robbery site is armed. Terry Donovan (Eddie Marsan) has never been involved in a serious crime for all of his life. He is a rookie when it comes to the criminal world and it will most-likely show in unexpected ways.

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About the author

Rollo Tomasi

A Political Science and MBA grad who started FilmBook during an eCommerce B-School course in 2008. Cinema and TV addict. Former writer at Empire Movies, Blogcritics, and Alternative Film Guide. In addition to writing for FilmBook, he also edits the copy published on the website, manages its writing staff, manages the back-end operations, site finances, its social network accounts, and works with publicists, actors, and companies on press coverage and promotions. He has also created ProMovieBlogger.com and Trending Awards.com.

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