TV Show Review

TV Review: RAY DONOVAN: Season 3, Episode 12: Exsuscito [Showtime]

Liev Schreiber Ray Donovan Exsuscito

Showtime’s Ray Donovan Exsuscito TV Show Review. Ray Donovan: Season 3, Episode 13: Exsuscito‘s best moment belonged to Ray Donovan (Liev Schreiber). Where Ray ended up during that moment was a surprise. He had avoided that place since childhood and for good reason. This was Liev Schieber’s best acting of the season, creating a powerful scene, one that held a previously undisclosed secret. Seeing Ray admit his secret elevated this episode and what the viewer thought of Liev as an actor. It was Liev’s (Gyp Rosetti, Church, Boardwalk Empire) moment. It killed Ray to admit what he admitted because it was true, he had to admit it to himself that it was true.

As a viewer, I was shocked. I never for a second believed Ray had cared for his abuser. Ray’s abuser knew exactly how to manipulate a small boy in search of parental affection.

The death, rebirth, and on the road to change motifs were not as strong as what had proceeded them. They were symbolic. The substance, the meat on the bone, was the heartfelt confession.

The therapist last season said Ray couldn’t change unless he faced his abuse. He did that in this episode. The questions is, what is the next step for Ray? Therapy? Would he go? Will he bottle back up again?

The fallout from body dumpster explosion at the end of Poker was what one could expect from a society obsessed with celebrity scandal. With Andrew Finney (Ian McShane) going to prison, that does not make his business contract with Ray Donovan null and void. He still owns Ray’s business and services. People in prison can own businesses, property, hold bank accounts, etc.

My guess is that even-though this is the case and Ray’s business is still legally owned by Andrew Finney, Ray Donovan‘s writers (next season) will say Ray no longer works for any Finney.

Regarding Paige Finney (Katie Holmes), when Paige asked Ray to stay and he left without saying a word, that was the end of any possible emotional relationship between the two of them. Paige knew it. That was why she kept staring at Ray’s closed apartment door in disbelief after Ray closed it behind himself. Paige was beautiful, vulnerable, in need of comfort, and a shoulder to cry on, and Ray was having none of it. Cold-blooded. Bravo.

The two shootouts in Exsuscito were transformative, ending storylines and beginning new ones. Killing all of the Armenians in the restaurant does not end the Armenian threat. Those Armenians were the spokespeople (the front-line) for a far larger organization stretching all the way back to Armenia “and the de facto independent Nagorno-Karabakh Republic.” When they find out that their people were killed, they will want to know why and by whom. They will send someone (most-likely a group of people) to investigate and/or take over their business interests in Los Angeles that are now vacant.

In the real world, the Armenian situation would not be over. That is why they have earned the reputation that they have. In the Ray Donovan universe, it is most-likely over with no Armenian resurgence, investigation, or retribution next season. That is too bad. It would have been wonderful if this carried over into next season and there was alley warfare between Ray and Armenians in Los Angeles, especially since the Armenian mob goes after the families of their targets as well. Seeing Ray handle that kind of threat (a danger and scope of death he had never faced before) would have been enjoyable to watch and highly entertaining. It will probably not happen i.e. new characters and new dangers next season, something fresh, shiny, and unexpected.

Terry Donovan (Eddie Marsan) ending up in the hospital was tragic but Mickey Donovan (Jon Voight)’s lack of guilt in the hospital waiting area was laughable. He felt absolutely no guilt for what happened, like a sociopath, even-though the whole situation was his fault. How Mickey is able to compartmentalize his feelings may be a result of his time in prison. Then again, from what his children have said about their childhoods with Mickey, he was always selfish, always thinking of himself, and his own interests first and foremost. The hospital moment was just another example of that.

Mickey’s exodus was long overdue. With Armenian blood on his shirt, he drove into exile. It was a poignant moment in Exsuscito and for Mickey. What Mickey will find in his new home is the question. He brought near-death to his son and his grandson through his criminal machinations. Perhaps in his new home he will find peace. I am surprised he didn’t head back to Mexico. He was having a ball there previously. Like Mexico, like his new home, Mickey Donovan will not be there long. Los Angeles and Ray Donovan‘s writers will soon come calling.

The resolution to the Greg Donellen (Aaron Staton) / Bridget Donovan (Kerris Dorsey) situation was pathetic. The often repeated phrase “already guilty” was supposed to mitigate everyone’s actions during Bridget / Greg scenes, including (eventually) Ray Donovan’s. It didn’t. Nearly committing a reprehensible act because everyone will assume that you did it anyway (regardless of your objections and proof) was idiotic. Seeing someone dig themselves into a hole they could have easily dug themselves out of was nails on a chalkboard. I don’t know where I thought this ‘ship was going but I didn’t think it would have an ignominious ending like the one in Exsuscito. I was hoping for a meaningful conclusion (which does not mean sex), something satisfying. Bridget was basically courting Greg, continuously ‘pressing her suit,’ using emotion and chemistry to persuade him to see her way of things. Bridget cared for Greg but not about Greg. If she cared about him, she would have never let him throw away the one meaning thing in his life that he had left – his teaching career. Bridget is a teenage girl, immature, and her actions can be explained away in that way i.e. she didn’t care about the ramifications to his professional life. She only cared about his personal life.

This was why they shouldn’t have been together (along with all the other reasons). Greg needed someone that cared about both aspects of him and his life, not just one.

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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.

  • Moh Kal

    Well this episode left me with lots pf questions. Well, actually lots of religious questions. Do we actually need religion in our lives? Can we go on without regret? And how do we gp about and fill that void in our hearts? Is there any kind of remedy other than religion? Or is that what the show is telling us; no matter how far you have gone astray, you cam always come back?

    That’s what was going on in my mind after watching this episode and really thanks for the awesome review!

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