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Mayans MC - Serpiente/Chikchan - Review: 'The Brothers Reyes'

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The penultimate episode of Mayans lived up to everything that a penultimate should be. Secrets were revealed, new alliances were formed and the Reyes family bond is tested.

What About Me?

Family dynamics are complicated and Angel Reyes learns that the most sacred place in his life was a lie. We pick up from the last episode with Angel and EZ in lock up after being pulled over with Celia's body in the trunk. The brothers are backed into a corner but ADA Potter is there to throw a lifeline. Potter reveals that EZ has been informing for the DEA to Angel and that the brothers are free to go if Angel joins in and helps to bring down their newest target, the rebels of Los Olividados. Potter believes there is a bigger cancer than Galindo and it is the rebels and with the brothers assisting him, it should help his case. Angel obviously is just hearing noise because the last thing that resonates is that his little brother wasn't the forlorn man that just wanted a new life and purpose in his MC, rather he was playing a long game and using him to accomplish his goal. Angel and EZ are released on the grounds that they need to decide their plans quickly and just in case they refuse, Celia was literally chilling in the fridge and charges would be filed. Potter does throw EZ a bone when he informs Angel that EZ insisted on a clause that Angel and the Mayans would come away clean from any information he provided to the DEA.

Angel Reyes is at a crossroads at this point. He has gone behind his club's back but his bedrock has been his blood family in EZ and Felipe. Now, he has learned that they were dealing behind his back and no matter the reason or justification, he was culpable just by having the Reyes name. Angel drives his baby bro into the desert and orders EZ out of the car and serves a big brother beating to which EZ does not protest. He laments that he was used and realizes that his own father knew about it all along. His world is shattered, but when a rattle snake almost strikes his battered brother, he doesn't hesitate to kill the serpent before it can hurt EZ. That action speaks volumes about Angel's intentions. The snake is great symbolism, but still, Angel cannot and will not let his little brother be threatened. This moment has been nine episodes in the making and the hurt and anguish Angel was experiencing was felt through every punch. Clayton Cardenas captivated me as he processed and relayed the feelings of Angel, he has played the man with a long game, a comic relief and finally a brother and son betrayed flawlessly. I have to admit that I have not been privy to his previous work, but if the way he plays Angel is any indication, I may have to go back and find some previous work just to experience his full brilliance. Back to the task at hand, Angel wasn't done, he still had Felipe to confront and left EZ to contemplate his next move.

Angel and Felipe Reyes' relationship has been a bit of an enigma during this first season of Mayans. Sure, we saw Angel check in on his pop earlier and Felipe has revealed that knowing Angel was on the way was the catalyst to pulling him out of his old life, but what this father and son are to each other has remained a mystery. After the revelation about EZ, Angel drives to his Pops' and Felipe is surprised to find his son in his living room keeping company with EZ's trophies and shrine. Angel waxes poetic about what EZ was and is to Felipe, but what about him? Felipe tries to tell Angel that he knew EZ was stuck and cop killers don't really exit prison gracefully. He thought that he could control the situation and keep EZ whole. Again, Angel questions his father, what about him? Felipe seems to admit he didn't think that far, he just knew he was him and knew that he had chosen that life for himself. This is a very complex situation, Felipe has two polar opposite sons, but at the core, he loves them both immensely. Whilst he may have been more concerned with EZ's deal at the time, it doesn't mean that he wasn't thinking of Angel. For Angel, the shadow of EZ has obviously loomed large for him but he still has a deep love and obligation when it comes to his little brother. The family is very broken at the moment, but their loyalty and devotion to one another is evident. Once Felipe mentions issues at the border and rebels, it snaps Angel out of his crisis and he is instantly worried about Adelita and Los Olividados and abruptly leaves his father's house with no explanation.

The Curious Case Of Miguel Galindo
The past two episodes of Mayans have been rough for Miguel. First he was framed while trying to retrieve his son and then he and his kin were held by the feds hoping to sniff out a deal. Miguel is at a crossroads, does he take the deal with the feds to be a cog in their wheel to take down the rebels across the border? Or does he go with Adelita and join forces with said rebels? With the Galindo homestead licking their wounds and putting things back together, Miguel and Emily have conferred and decided that Adelita and the rebels are the best choice. Devante scoffs at this and says the feds are the way to go and he once again tries to play on Miguel's blindspot with his father and what he would have done. Miguel seems to consider what Devante is saying until he realizes a truth about his brother.

Miguel cooly and calmly navigates this episode and I can't believe I am rooting for the man that I was sure that I was firmly against when this show started. The beauty of this show is that it plays in the grey and the characters are all trying to survive to see another day. What we think is bad may not be and what we think we know is not the case. That, to me, is great writing and planning. The reason I bring this up is that, Miguel and Emily call a meeting of the minds on behalf of Galindo at the casino and reveal to the Mayans that a new deal is in place and it involves Los Olividados..... The same group that took their son to get their attention. They are sticking to devil they think they know and it is them against the world. The Mayans will no longer be cut rate couriers but rather important pieces to how Miguel and Los Olvidados run. This move in turn almost erases the fact that Team Rouge (Angel, Gilly, Coco and EZ) were working with Adelita er Luisa in the first place or at least one can hope. Devante is incensed, but Miguel has a plan for him.

Once the successful meeting is adjourned, Miguel rides with Devante and reveals that he knows that he lied to him about his brother being kidnapped all those years ago because he found the X-Rays confirming that Cristobal succumbed to pneumonia. Devante tries to sell Miguel that he was doing it for the greater good, but it is no use.... Miguel is done. We learn that Devante was the foot soldier who followed the priest's intel about Luisa's (Adelita) family's whereabouts and slaughtered them. Miguel shows a sign of good faith and hands Devante over to Luisa to meet the same fate. His hands are now washed of the last remnants of his father's regime. Devante accepts his fate but implores Miguel not to blame his mother Dita for the story she spun at his request. Miguel leaves and joins Emily and El Padrino of the Mayans on their way towards a new reality.

Alls Well? Right?
This episode could have served as a finale but it is not and there is Potter shaped shadow on EZ and Angel. EZ plays good prospect during the meeting and goes to meet Angel afterwards. He comes upon Team Rouge celebrating with ladies and a tattoo artist and it is not what he is expecting. Angel plays like nothing is wrong and informs his brother that they are getting tattoos to commemorate what they had done and that tattoo is a snake. Jeez, Angel.... That isn't subtle at all! He and EZ have a moment on the deck where Angel tells him that no matter what he is his brother and that means he can't let something happen to him. But, he wants him gone so whatever excuse he can muster for Bishop is what he needs to do because he can't stay. EZ tries to reason with Angel but Angel tells him the Snake tattoo is there to remind EZ of what this is. Just as they are having this conversation, the forgotten piece of Lincoln Potter enters the picture again and tells the brothers Reyes' they have a task (Did they even agree yet?).... To exterminate EZ's DEA handler Kevin Jimenez. Their second cousin and champion of EZ now has a signed death warrant and we cut to black showing why this wasn't the finale after all.

Odds And Ends:

* The Priest turned Bishop who betrayed Adelita/Luisa's family got his and I can't say I am sad. He ruined that woman's life and played it off.

* Emily confronted EZ this episode about the intel she saw while with the feds. I have to say if this is the 'love story' of this show, I have no idea how they get that back.... Emily seems totally bought in to what her husband is doing.

* On the other side, do Adelita/Luisa and Angel now have clear path to pursue their chemistry? I kind of hope so, but think it should be on the down low for now.

* Who else feels for Jimenez? He is almost out and honestly deserves to be with how much of a conscious he has shown. It kind of is heartbreaking to think EZ whom he has worked so hard to protect might be his undoing.

* Are Team Rouge really off scot free? I am still not sure but I hope so because I can't bear to lose any of them at this point!

What did you think and are you ready for next week? Let me know!

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