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September 2, 2014

Big Love: Kingdom Come

by Jen Creer, posted Jul 31st 2007 2:22AM
Roman Grant(S02E08) [Spoiler Warning!] Please don't read the extended version of this review if you have not yet watched this episode. What a great episode. There were so many threads in this episode, it was great to see how fast and furious old and new facts were being hurled out through the dialogue. Oh, poor Benny. How humiliating. I think it's bad enough for any teenager to have his parents find out that he's having sex-- but it has to be especially bad when those parents think not only is he too young, but what he is doing is also a pretty serious sin.

I love looking at episode titles, and of course, obviously this title comes from The Lord's Prayer (which is pretty funny, because Joseph Smith instructs his followers to pray in a different way, and not to use this prayer), indicating that the Lord's will will be done. And that probably means not Bill's will.

It's a testament to Bill's strength as a businessman and to his charisma that he manages to alienate his entire family in this episode and then to slowly start to win them back. We didn't see him make up with Margene, but she doesn't seem the type to stay mad at him for long. If Margene is the naughty girl and Nicki is the good girl, what does that make Barb? Is Barb the mom? I think there is a lot of truth to Margene's accusation that Bill views her as the toy, the sexual one. And that newness is a large part of their sexual attraction: She is right to worry about what may happen when there is a fourth wife. And perhaps Nicki's fears are founded as well: she obviously has hangups in the bedroom that Margene doesn't have, but I think Bill does get something he needs from each of his wives. This overtly clear in this episode.

We also learned something important about the future of the family: Barb does not have room for anymore wives. I thought the wives were being pretty ridiculous about Bill's need to have one night off per week to himself. I think that is a pretty normal need-- but Barb was right to tell Bill that he needs to spend more time with his children, too.

What Barb did to Brynn was a stroke of genius. Okay, if Benny wants to play the marriage card, and just get married so he can have sex, then fine. Tell his "fiancee" what is really in store for her, and let her run. I wonder if Barb would have married Bill in the first place if she had known what was coming?

I felt bad for Lois in this episode. She is one of my favorite characters. She is scrappy, and she is a survivor. And now Frank (and Bill and Eddie) have completely stripped her of her independence and her dreams. She doesn't have much left, and I think she is pretty desperate. She also has a shotgun, a pistol, and a daughter-in-law who likes to poison people. I wonder if Frank has much time left on this earth. Wanda may try to kill people-- but I think Lois is capable of actually doing it. Either that, or maybe she will leave the compound for good.

It was a very smart move on Bill's part to give Ben the priesthood: The first thing that flew out of my mouth when Bill told Ben he wanted to confer the priesthood upon him was, "He's not worthy." Because Benny has been having sex, until he has gone through a repentance process, he shouldn't receive the priesthood. But that is the main problem Benny has had confiding in Bill-- the feeling that Bill is judging him, that he feels Ben is not worthy. So, the most profound way Bill can convey to Benny that he does think his son is worthy is to make him a priesthood holder.

I was honestly scared when a bloodied Hollis Greene called Bill and told him that the jig was up. I really thought Bill was going to be hurt or killed in the crossfire between the Grants and the Greenes. I thought Roman was going to figure out that Bill was playing him. I loved the ATF agent from Boston who told Bill the cold, hard truth: You might see little distinctions between yourself, Roman, and the Greenes. But outside of Utah, you're all the same. It's like chiropractors, massage therapists and osteopaths all insisting that they are really very different kind of care providers. Yeah, riiiiight.

It was great to see Bill through her eyes, and to take a step back from him a bit. There we go again with Bill being "normal" and living a "normal" life: Eddie wants to be just like Bill. But the ATF agent gave a very powerful reminder that if any of them leave Utah, they're going to jail. And that includes Benny, if he decides he wants to live the Principle. Barb clearly doesn't want that for Benny. What about her daughters? And how is she going to keep that from happening while she is living it? To what extent will she go to protect her children from her own fate?

And then, my very favorite part of the episode. Nice homage to The Godfather I and II, to have Roman Grant gunned down by two of Greene's followers while he was out going to his car, surrounded by bodyguards (Godfather I), interspersed with Bill laying his hands on his son and praying (Godfather II). Too bad Roman wasn't buying oranges when he died, but maybe he had orange on his butterscotch sundae. Hmm, butterscotch is sort of an orange color...

You do think Roman is dead, don't you? It is going to be sad to see Harry Dean Stanton go, but I high-fived my husband. I hope they make Bill the next prophet. Wouldn't that be a hoot?

Do you think Roman is dead?
yes149 (35.1%)
no275 (64.9%)

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jamie

this was the best episode of the show by far. i always knew it was good...but could never pinpoint why, nor could i get completely invested in each episode to the point where i would think about it after it was over. this completely opened my eyes to why i love the show. while watching it, i completely understood every aspect of why this family works. i'm just blown away by how much this turned the show from one i thought was really good to one i know was really good.

August 03 2007 at 12:13 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ScreenwriterGuy

Roman is not dead. I almost felt cheated that they showed him receiving such survivable injuries. The bullets hit his arm, shoulder, and stomach. Plus, ATF put the Greene cult away for a long time. No Roman would mean Bill is without an antagonist, and I'd be shocked if the show did that.

This week's episode did a marvelous job of exploring the dynamics of Bill's three relationships. Never have I so clearly seen the characters of the three women. I thought the final sex scene with Nikki was marvelous. They made her moral objections plain, but the reason that she gave Bill seemed quite genuine and spoke of her desire for intimacy on a different level.

Ben took Barb's intervention into his relationship with Bryn as if it was meddling, but the scene seemed to me quite revelationary for Barb. Sure, her goal was to get Bryn to run away, but it was also Barb expressing her true sentiments about polygamy as clearly as she ever has.

Very well written episode.

http://www.screenwriterguy.com

August 02 2007 at 4:47 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gordy

You know, each episode Bill becomes more and more like Roman. Did you see the creepy look Ben had when Bill told him to keep the business deal between them? I hope this character doesn't become dark like Alfie, I kinda enjoy his innocence.

Now that the the creepy 'Noon-O'Clock' guy is in the picture, I guess Roman seems tame in comparison. He can go...I'm over him. If The Sopranos is any indication, a shot to the gut is arduous, but he'll live.

Barb...what can I say...this chick is leaving. Every scene seemed to be building to that end, but the episode wrapped up with Roman's shooting. I loved how she killed Ben's engagement, but she kinda came off like Nicki's mom when she did it. Very creepy with the smiling while she told Ben's girl her ordeal. Very compound-y in her execution.

It's funny...there's a saying that goes 'you can take a boy out the country, but you can never take the country out the boy'. Bill seems to be living up to that. His whole 'I need to take care of my family' thing just reeks of the compound...and Roman, specifically.

Welcome Back Jen :)

August 01 2007 at 9:16 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Sam

With all of the references to The Godfather, does everyone remember that Harry Dean Stanton was in The Godfather Part II? He was one of the FBI agents guarding Frankie Pentangeli.

August 01 2007 at 8:47 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Borat

WOW this show is good. They weren't kidding when they said the show will be provocative in many ways this season...keeps hitting new heights.

The Bill-Margene sex scene was pretty unusual for this series...first time we have seen so much skin.

July 31 2007 at 10:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
madill

I'm not so sure Roman's dead. In some sort of special on Big Love I saw a Harry Dean Stanton walking around in a white bathrobe. Then, I think, I saw him in a bed. Haven't seen THAT episode YET. Stanton is such a great asset to the cast I can't imagine the show without him.

I expect to see Barb and the older daughter cut and leave the family before the season is over. Barb has just about had her fill.

July 31 2007 at 8:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jeff N.

This is one of the best shows on TV right now. I think it's easily as good as the last years of the Sopranos,... if not better.

July 31 2007 at 6:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jimmy Jazz

In addition to the Godfather references in Roman's shooting scene, bear in mind that Harry Dean Stanton was in "Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid", the theme song of which was....."Knockin' on Heaven's Door".

July 31 2007 at 4:24 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
iamhoff

Fantastic episode! As Jen said, so many threads going on. The interplay between the wives was great, especially Nikki's protest against oral sex. "You seem too far away!" Classic! And Barb's interaction with Brynn was great, and a sure fire way to put an end to things. I also agree that Lois is certainly capable of putting an end to Frank. I don't see her leaving the compound, but I can see her definitely unloading a gun into Frank.

The Weber Gaming/Roman/Greene story just keeps getting better and better. I was fully expecting Bill to get caught in some sort of crossfire, either figuratively or literally, and in a way he did with the ATF agent (who IMO seemed a little too fake and contrived). It was surprising to see Roman out in public so much, and I definitely wasn't expecting to see him get gunned down. I cannot wait for next week!

July 31 2007 at 12:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Gig

#6 Do a little research on the Morman based cults. It is not hard to understand where the Husband in this situation would be pretty ME based.

July 31 2007 at 12:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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