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The Company You Keep - Company Man AND The Art of the Steel - Review

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Just when you think TCYK couldn’t get any better, sexier, or more thrilling, it somehow does! It has been a rollercoaster ride since the pilot and these last two episodes are no exception. 

The tension is laid on thick as we see Emma and Charlie and his family working together to bring down Daphne Finch. And while I love the angst that is being delivered, I can’t help feeling as if some of the resentment that Emma feels towards Charlie might just be a little misplaced. Yes, Charlie lied, but so did Emma, and even though her feelings are completely valid, it’s also somewhat hypocritical of her to place so much of the blame on Charlie. 

I think episode 7 might just be one of my favorites of the series though. Yes, there were the usual cons and jobs, but they were such a stark contrast for me compared to previous episodes in that it all felt slowed down in a way.

There were a lot of heavier moments in this one; more emotion, more vulnerability than I think we’ve seen so far, with the exception of that incredibly sweet moment between Birdie and Ollie in 1x06. 

Between Birdie and her relationship with Simon and why he left, and her bond with Ollie, the tension between Birdie and Leo for omitting the truth, Emma and Charlie’s currently dead-in-the-water relationship, and a growing buzz between Charlie and Daphne…emotions were flying high and all over the place in this one.

Those moments are what make this show so great though. The relationships between these characters are so beautifully woven together that you sometimes forget you’re watching a thrilling series about cons and crime. The familial elements, the love, and the losses – those moments when we’re hit with absolute heartache when we least expect them – are what make this show so incredibly relatable and entertaining. It’s a big reason as to why I’ve been hooked since day one.

Despite all the emotional turmoil, there is still a job to be done, so Emma and Charlie put aside their feelings they still so obviously have for one another and do what they need to do to keep things moving along.

Daphne is none the wiser to Charlie’s playing of both sides, but it’s yet to be seen just how much of that could come back to bite him and everything he holds dear to him, even with that wonderful buzz that is transpiring between the two. And what a buzz it is because oh my, my, my! I was not prepared for it, and even though the love triangle trope has never been a big favorite of mine, I am living for it now. 

I might be a little biased because anyone who has been following my reviews of TCYK or my yelling over on Twitter can see how much I am absolutely smitten with Daphne Finch, but I can’t say enough about how much I enjoyed seeing that softer side of her. Yes, she’s a big bad and she’s great at it, but we got to see her in a new light, more as someone we can relate to instead of just the villain who is causing as much chaos as possible. 

It seems as though Charlie can relate to her as well given the softer interactions we saw unfold between them, an understanding between the two that we then see trickle into episode eight. 

It’s not exactly mixing business with pleasure, but with emotions as high as they are and with where things are right now, it’s almost the same. Charlie goes to see Daphne, and Emma makes her snide little comments to which Charlie just smiles off as if none of it is getting to him, but thankfully we have protective sis Birdie to call things as she sees them. She makes an observation of the budding business relationship between her brother and Daphne, and then continues to call it out in front of Emma during their surveillance. 

Even with the obvious tension, Birdie and Emma manage to work well together when they team up and run a con on a judge. They need to convince him to release Patrick Maguire from prison – a feat that Daphne couldn’t achieve on her own, so she pulled in Charlie – and are ultimately successful in getting the job done. As much as we’ve seen Daphne in a new light these last couple episodes, we’re also shown a different side to Emma in this one. Her and Birdie become seemingly closer, sharing conversations and truths that haven’t otherwise been shared elsewhere. I think it’s good though. Emma becomes aware of just what Charlie has done and what he’s sacrificed in order to help her, and in the end, she extends an olive branch by doing the same and getting Leo out of hot water with the cops. 

Things are about to become a whole lot more dangerous though now that Patrick Maguire is out of prison as of this last episode. Especially since Connor is back too and standing by his father’s side, and the two are clearly scheming to get Daphne out of the picture as soon as they can. 

With Patrick and Connor looming in the shadows, we can’t forget about Emma’s family dysfunction and David’s new relationship with an employee (ex-eo Leo’s deteriorating mental health, Birdie’s ex being back in the picture…there’s almost too much going on that it’s hard to keep track of it all, but still, we’re seated with bated breath with every scene that unfolds. 

And all of it has me scratching my head with too many questions on my mind, feeling more than nervous for what could possibly become of all these characters we’ve fallen in love with. There’s only two episodes left in this first season, but still so much more story to be told, and I think we’re in for quite a lot of chaos as it comes to an end.



Some (a lot) of my ramblings...


-       The tension between Charlie and Emma...whew! Always a fan of the angst. 


-    Birdie has some of the best lines in this show and I will hear no arguments.


-       I know Leo had the best intentions, but he still should have told Birdie instead of letting her believe that Simon had just left. She carried around so much trauma and pain for years thinking he had abandoned her and Ollie, and knowing that’s not actually what happened per se is such a punch to the gut. 


-       Birdie is the best mom. That’s just a fact. 


-       Daphne and Charlie...I am feeling the buzz. 


-       Daphne is the BEST villain. At this point, she’s not even a villain to me. Like, that’s my number one and I will defend her to the end. 


-       “You’re good at getting women to trust you.” Ok, that was a low blow. Why is Emma acting like she didn’t do anything wrong, and it’s all on Charlie? Come on now. 


-       Oh yeah. Buzz, buzz, BUZZING for Charlie and Daphne. I’m so here for it. 


-       This storyline with Simon is breaking my heart, but I really hope he’s gonna do better for Birdie and Ollie now that he’s back in their lives. There’s gotta be a happy ending there somewhere for the three of them, or at least for father and daughter. 


-       That little elbow bump between Daphne and Charlie made me feel way too much. Jesus. 


-       “Sometimes the stories that we tell ourselves to fill in the cracks of what happened hurt worse than the truth.” The writers deserve all the accolades for that one because OUCH


-       Ollie is the sweetest, most sensitive and understanding kid. Her and Birdie’s relationship is still my favorite of this series.


-       “Money, power, or respect...I want it all.” Daphne deserves it all honestly and I’m rooting for her.


-       “I guess our comms got too close.” *giggles*


-       Emma putting everything on the line for Charlie... *sigh* Can she just get over it already? She lied. He lied. Neither of them is clean in this whole mess. The hypocrisy and double-edged sword of it all is really irking me. 


-       Daphne and Charlie bonding even under false pretenses on his part is altering my brain chemistry. 


-       Leo may have meddled where maybe he shouldn’t have, but he’s a good dad and a good man who loves his family and we love to see it. 


-       Ollie and Simon are adorable. Need to see more of them together. 


-       Am I sensing some...chemistry between Emma and Vik? *side-eye*


-       Listen, I’m loving the love triangle, but I need Emma to realize she doesn’t really have a leg to stand on as far as her anger and jealousy. She is the one who ended it with Charlie and lied to him just as much about who she is, as he did with her. That’s all.


-       “It sounds like she’s feeling a little more for him than trust these days.” Birdie sees and knows all. 


-       Leo running a job on his own is the most Leo thing this show has done yet.


-       When is everyone gonna learn they can’t get one over on Birdie? 


-       David dating Jennifer is such a conflict of interest. Like how is no one else seeing this?


-       The drama with the Hill family is getting so juicy though. 


-       “You don’t like the answers, stop asking the questions.” I’m really enjoying feisty Charlie in this episode. 


-       The truth bombs just keep coming in this episode. Yikes. 


-       I love that Emma’s new nickname is Logistics. Good one, Bird.


-       Leo, Leo, Leo... *facepalm*


-       “She’s no Maguire. She’s only here as long as it’s useful.” If anything, and I mean ANYTHING, happens to Daphne, I will go absolutely feral. 


-       “I did what’s right.” Maybe Emma earned some brownie points with that one. 








What’s your take on The Company You Keep? Like it? Love it? Somewhere in between? Drop a comment and let us know!



The Company You Keep airs on Sunday nights at 10/9 central on ABC with next day streaming on Hulu.

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