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Animal Kigdom - Wolves - Review + Poll: "A Job Well Done"



You guys, we finally got a real job again! And yeah, other things happened this week, too, but that job! It was so good. Also exciting? How quickly I'm getting the review out this time! I'll be hosting a "Pat me on the back" party in a couple of days, and I expect you all to attend and congratulate me for finally being on the ball. Until then, I'll just continue to pat myself! But, enough about how amazing I am. Let's talk about this amazing show, aka, the only reason we're all really here.

Keys to the Kingdom
Craig came back from Mexico and tried to scrounge up some money to move in with Renn, only to discover she wasn't looking to share a place with him.

Deran set Adrian up with money to follow his surfing dreams, spent some time dealing with his brother, and was given a stern talking to about being a part of the family.

J dealt with Smurf's financial woes while scoping out a job for her and getting closer to Mia. Really close. They had sex.

Pope struggled with his newfound role as a father, and at his worst was still better at it than Baz. He also went with J to scope out a job and vouched for it with Craig and Deran.

Smurf continued to be Smurf, even behind bars. She found out about a job with a decent score and got the girl who told her about it sent to isolation so Smurf wouldn't have to share any of the money.


This Week's Prey
Our first scene this week gives us J and Nicky having some of the least enthusiastic sex I've seen on TV in a long time. As J rolls off of her when he's done, Nicky looks pretty sad about the whole thing and she takes a walk around the house. When she sees Mia asleep on the couch, stares at her with eyes that are very clearly saying "I know/suspect what you're doing with my boyfriend". There also may have been a touch of "I want to sleep with you" eyes in there somewhere as well, but I think I see that in characters all the time. I was sure I was right about it later in the episode, but we'll get to that later.

Smurf and her defense attorney begin their morning having a meeting with the prosecutor. The meeting mostly consists of Smurf yelling questions at the prosecutor while she ignores her lawyer hinting that she shouldn't do that. Smurf is convinced they are only keeping her in jail so they can attempt to find something else on her, a claim she backs up with the fact that Pearce is sitting in on this meeting. After the meeting, her lawyer asks if there's anything Pearce will find, assuming he really is looking for something else. We get a classic Smurf lie with her saying "no" and her lawyer takes his leave.

On the way back from a supermarket trip, J and Nicky have a short talk about Mia as J keeps an eye on the tail he noticed is following him. Nicky flat-out asks what the deal is, and J tells her she's who he has to pay to keep Smurf safe in jail, but she can't tell the guys about it. I'm positive she'll tell the guys about it at some point, because Nicky is so bad at secrets. I don't know how we aren't realizing this. Nicky then points out that the guys are going to think he's sleeping with her, no doubt hoping for a denial. She does not get one. When the guys have breakfast later, Mia comes out and, after some quick suspicion, mostly come to the conclusion that he's sleeping with her. They don't like her in the house though, especially when they're about to pull a job. Also during this breakfast, Deran constantly barks orders at Nicky for different things he wants her to bring. It's pretty rude, but she doesn't say anything. Nicky comes back out with Deran's order while they begin discussing the plan and the sight of her prompts Pope to have them discuss the plan in the garage, once again isolating Nicky which is no way to ensure she keeps all the secrets she knows about the family. Deran makes it clear that he's not a fan of this job, but he's going along with it for the family.

The boys head out for their job and it's really one of the best jobs they've pulled, in my opinion. They're able to take all the attention off of the store they're hitting by calling in a fake bank robbery, and Deran gets the attention of the security guard by smashing into an old man's car. The distractions work perfectly, and they even manage to get J's tail mistaken by the cops as a bank robber, which was really fun. When the boys start their infiltration of the shop by locking the two men in their front room, the two men call their boys to come do something about the robbery. The security guard is busy with the car accident, and when the backup arrives they are deterred by all the cops that are there to respond to the bank robbery. The boys get the safe into their garbage truck and ride off into the sunset. Pope gets Deran to admit it was a solid job as J takes out the money and gives the boys their cut. Their very low cuts. J swears the rest of the money is needed to pay Smurf's bills, but the boys are still pretty upset with the small cuts they've gotten. Pearce shows up later at the bank scene to figure out how J and Deran were at the scene of a fake bank robbery and nothing was stolen, when he stumbles upon the pill mill and figures out what happens. He also knows there's no solid way to prove the crime since the pill mill isn't going to report anything and he congratulates the boys on a job well done.

While are out for their job, Nicky goes on an adventure of her own: tailing Mia. She's pretty bad at it though. About as good as J's tail as Nicky is spotted in her car siting outside of Mia's job. Mia comes up and tells her she can ask anything she feels the need to ask and tells her she's getting off of work in a few minutes. The ladies go to a bar where they discuss the ins and outs of their lives, including how J and Nicky met and how Mia sometimes does side work for her cousin. So, maybe the older Trujillo isn't actually her father as I've been assuming, but her cousin instead? More on this confusion later. As they get further into the night, Nicky continues to get more drunk than she needs to be. The girls get closer to each other a few times, and every time I said, "This is it!" and was sure something was going to happen, but I was quite wrong. At least for this week. Nicky explains the she's not with her father because she's got so much going on here with the family she definitely says/thinks she's a part of, but we know differently, even if she doesn't. Nicky closes up for a second when Mia asks for specifics, but after Mia spits out the snitch mantra of "Do I look like a snitch?", Nicky opens the floodgates and says the boys don't do anything for less than $100k, and even brags about their yacht heist. Oh, Nicky. Mia tries to push Nicky into the arms of a marine, but Nicky puts up a small fight at first. Then, Nicky asks what's up between Mia and J, and when she responds with "What do you think?", Nicky hops right up and eventually onto the Marine.

As Nicky has her fun, Mia calls back whoever has been calling her all night to tell them that she's learned a bit about the Cody clan. Oh, Nicky. Later, Mia quietly walks through the back door of a house that she apparently used to live in to steal a gun and an important-looking piece of paper. On the way out, she is confronted by an older woman who wants to know what Mia is here to still this time. I guess it's been an issue. She then asks Mia, "When are you going to see him?" Who is this him? Great question. If the older Trujillo is actually her cousin, perhaps this is referring to her father. If not her father, perhaps an ex-boyfriend, or maybe an ex/current husband. The woman asks Mia what she plans to do when he eventually gets out, and she responds with, "Tell him I'm dead." Whoever it is, she's certainly not a fan.

When the boys finally return home, they find a car parked outside with a special visitor ready to meet them. He's here specifically to see Deran and says his name is Billy. Pope immediately knows who the man is, though. We've just met Deran's daddy and his girlfriend. Pope is less than thrilled the entire time is around Billy, and Deran leaves after they all have a short chat by the pool. His dad chases him down to attempt one more shot at a connection, which ends quickly when Deran drives away. Deran heads back to his bar and is told a man has been waiting for him for a long time. I was excited at first when I thought it was Adrian, but it turned out to be one of his boys asking to Deran when they're going to pull another job. Deran yells at him and tells him he'll get a call when there's job, then storms back to the bar. Shortly after, our infamous ER nurse shows up, resulting in a pretty continuous scream from me throughout the scene. Luckily, this was internal screaming, so I could still hear what was happening, but I wasn't happy about it. He has brought another signed hat to replace the one Craig told him had been ruined a while ago and gets ready to leave when he senses Deran's stand-offish mood. Before he can leave, Deran apologizes and begins opening up to this stranger about his father, and the two get drunk together. We haven't currently seen the aftermath of that, but I'm cringing for it.

At the house, Craig, J, and Pope have a pow wow about Billy and Pope reveals that Billy was always awful and he clearly remembers Smurf kicking him. Pope tasks Craig with getting rid of him and heads home for the evening. The next morning, Pope drops a sad Lena off at school, promising a whole bunch of things that she responds to with "k". This poor girl doesn't believe anything adults say to her anymore, and she continues to break my heart. When Nicky and J get up, they have perhaps the most adult interaction I've ever seen from the two of them. Nicky actually admits that she slept with another man last night, and J doesn't lose his mind on her in a hypocritical rage. This was honestly the most shocking thing to me the entire episode. Even more adult, J says he has to go and then sits in his car to throw a quick tantrum as he (hopefully) realizes he's been a neglectful boyfriend and is losing the one person who knew him before his mother died. He then goes to brag to Smurf about how well the job went. It's a pretty jovial visit, until J brings up Billy. Smurf's demeanor immediately changes, and the rest of the scene is her being extremely adamant that Billy needs to get out of that house and never be there again. Pope, meanwhile, shows up at the house to find that Billy is, in fact, still at the house sleeping by the pool. After yelling at Craig (who we find out took a whole bag of pills during their job), Pope returns to find the pair no longer by the pool. He searches for them and runs into Billy's girlfriend in the nude getting ready to shower. He stands there shocked while she turns to give him a full view before stepping into the shower, and then is brought back to Earth when Billy emerges and pats him on the shoulder as he walks by. This doesn't look good.

Animal Instincts
Every second of the heist had me on my toes. I love that we never are told the full plan and get to watch every second of it unfold and wonder if it will work. When the two men in the shop called for backup, I was worried for our boys, completely forgetting that they wouldn't do anything because of all the attention the cops had on the area. It was hilarious to see J's tail being surrounded by the cops because of the boys and J pretending to be mad with two cups of coffee in his hand was a good time as well.

I cheered for Nicky's infidelity this week. She might not be my favorite character, but she's been put through the ringer so far this year, and it was nice to see her doing something for herself. Granted, directly beforehand she was letting herself get manipulated by Mia into revealing secrets and I wanted to go through the screen and slap her, but at least she had a moment. And I was beyond proud of her for confessing to J completely unprovoked, and fully suspecting he's cheating on her anyways. It was very big of her. Maybe it will also get J to stop sleeping with the enemy and appreciating what he has, but this family doesn't have a great track record with learning lessons.

The coming weeks have me very excited. Billy certainly won't be handled by the end of next week. He's going to be an ongoing issue, and I have no doubt that it will escalate to some fun places. I also can't wait to see if I need to angry at Deran for sleeping with this nurse, or proud of him for not sleeping with the nurse. My money's on angry, but I'm really hoping for proud. I'll settle for something down the middle where he wakes up, realizes what happened because he was too drunk, and hates himself for it for a long, long time. I'd survive with that. And I hope we get to see Lena happier soon. She's been through too much for a little girl.

Favorite Sights
Lena, again
Pope calling to check on Lena's homework
Pearce realizing what happened and knowing he can't do anything about it
The job!!!
Billy!!!

How much did you love that job? What are you most looking forward to next week? What do you think the deal is with Mia? Sound off in the comments below!


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