Ray Donovan: Season 1, Episode 5; The Golem

Liev Schreiber as Ray Donovan and Elliott Gould as Ezra Goldman.
Liev Schreiber as Ray Donovan and Elliott Gould as Ezra Goldman.

This episode of Ray Donovan feels kind of like a filler one. There is some great acting from Liev Schreiber and some really funny moments. But otherwise it just serves to slowly progress the story. It’s necessary, but as a result it isn’t a stand out episode.
Since the beginning of the series we have seen Ezra struggling with his sanity. It seemed lie Alzheimer’s at first, but this episode it revealed to actually be a brain tumor. This isn’t a big shock or loss to the audience, Ezra hasn’t had very many scenes. But this revelation is huge for Ray. Ezra is probably the most important figure in Ray’s life. Ezra is Ray’s true father figure, not Mickey. Mickey has only brought Ray down while Ezra supports Ray and has helped become a success in Hollywood.
So Ray is devastated by this news. And his reaction to the news is really interesting. Ray is a quiet, withdrawn man who rarely shows emotion. Immediately after hearing the news Ray gets shit faced. Then he goes and fucks Ashley. Bat shit crazy Ashley. Of all the girls he picks the one who handcuffs herself to his towel rack. Oh well, I guess she was immediately available. Anyways, Ray has to be in a bad way if he chooses to fuck her. The way they screw is also kind of interesting, it’s from behind and very aggressive, seemingly all about Ray. After this Ray drunkenly staggers into his apartment. As he stares at Marvin Gaye’s blood splattered adoption papers he breaks down, sobbing relentlessly. The Abby, the bitch from hell, appears asking, “Who the fuck are ya Ray?” It’s the question that plagues Ray throughout the series.
• Terry and Frances are sleeping together now. Also Terry is a “sex god.”
• Bunchy cashes in his $1.4 million cheque from the Catholic Church. All he wants is $50 and a bike. Mickey wants enough money to get some hookers.
Mickey-ism #1: “Last time I was in a bank I had a stocking on my face.”

• Ashley shows up at Ray’s apartment, telling him, “I’m not leaving here until you fuck me.” She then handcuffs herself to the towel rack in his bathroom and flushes the key down the toilet. Ray’s just like fuck, let her be crazy, I got shit to do and leaves.
• Abby has a little chat with a fellow yoga goer who is concerned because Abby is always crying in class. Yoga Girl observes that “Men are naturally really secretive animals” (has she met Ray???) Abby ends up telling her, “You’re a nosy cunt.”
• The Hollywood divorce that Ray and Lee are helping reach a settlement is pretty funny. I imagine that’s actually how it goes down in real life. One barely used penis pump and all.
• Prisoner Ashley is bored so she tries shaving her legs only to cut herself. She is so bored she tries to write her name in blood on the mirror, but gives up. Ashley proceeds to put on Ray’s deodorant. Craaaaazy.
• Abby’s talk with yoga girl has got her thinking…. She goes and checks out Ray’s ‘cave’ i.e. his office and his apartment.
• Mickey is the Golem of the episode’s title. I’m not sure what Golem means exactly, but judging by how Ezra freaks out it’s not good.
• Mickey and Ezra talk about how Ezra and Ray sent Mickey to jail. It’s a surprisingly decent, calm conversation. Mickey tells Ezra, “My son, he’s my son, he did what he thought he had to do. But you, you’re a piece of shit.”

• Marvin’s (remember him? The neighbor?) mom never sent in the signed adoption papers. Ray investigates and finds that she’s been shot, but she did manage to sign the papers.
• Sex God (Terry) is being brushed off by Frances. But why? Oh, it’s only because SHE’S MARRIED AND HAS A SON. Poor Terry.
• Bunchy decides to buy a house. A shitty one. In the middle of the night. Because he is a functioning, independent adult, goddammit!
• Avi and Ray track down Van’s (FBI Guy) address. They sneak in and find that he’s extremely fond of action figures and has Ray’s picture on the wall, along with Ezra’s, Lee’s and Mickey’s. Nothing creepy there at all.

Kerris Dorsey as Bridget Donovan and Octavius J. Johnson as Marvin Gaye Washington.
Kerris Dorsey as Bridget Donovan and Octavius J. Johnson as Marvin Gaye Washington.

• Since Ray and Abby are too busy with their own shit, their kids decide to have a little party with Marvin. Marvin and Bridget make out and Conner pukes all over Ray’s watches. Fun times.
• Lena is given the task of getting rid of Ashley before Abby shows up at Ray’s apartment (having handcuffed girls in your apartment would be a no no). When Ashley sees Lena she says, “You’re hot.” Damn right she is!

• Ashley: “You can’t hit me, I have epilepsy.” Lena punches her anyways.

Episode MVP is Liev Schreiber he does some incredible work here, especially at the end.

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