HBO’s favorite hitman/aspiring actor is depressed, out of work, and longing for forgiveness

“Forgiveness is something you have to work for.”

We haven’t really gone to NoHo Hank for moral direction throughout the course of two seasons of Barry (politeness may be a virtue, but the dude’s a gangster).

And yet, in the opening episode of the third season, there’s the Chechen dandy, expressing the truth.

Clearly, Barry’s environment has shifted, and we’ll need a moment to reorient ourselves.

In the cold open, there’s the customary deadpan gallows humor, but something’s amiss.

The cuckolder has been kidnapped by Barry (Bill Hader) and his deceived spouse,

who has forced him to dig his tomb by a solitary tree in the desert hills outside of Los Angeles.

Before shooting the culprit, the outraged husband orders an unshaven, hollow-eyed Barry,

who is happily eating a doughnut, to chop off the offender’s eyes.

Barry shuffles to his car trunk, grabs some clippers, and trudges back to the graveyard, the soon-to-be victim begging in the background.

The husband and cuckolder had unexpectedly reunited in that half-minute.

Jeff pleaded for forgiveness, and his spiteful spouse gave it to him on the spot. The assassination attempt has been canceled.

Barry looks at the guys, who are grinning with relief, and shoots both of them in the head.

“Jeff, there’s no forgiveness!” As he walks back to his car, Barry yells into the wind. Third season: Mercy may strike in the twinkling of an eye. Is there, however, a happy ending? It’s unlikely.

Barry has never been slain for any reason other than obligation or wrath.

The beginning is a dark joke, but it also serves as a major season statement: Barry may be addicted to murder, which he does out of boredom or annoyance.

We witnessed how murdering his ex-Marine comrade Chris (to prevent him from informing the authorities about the Bolivian ambush) left Barry paralyzed with remorse in the first season.

In the second, Barry tried several times to avoid murder only to be drawn into mindless carnage: a breathtakingly violent season finale in which berserker Barry massacred a monastery full of Chechens, Bolivians, and Burmese in quest of Fuches.

 

He’s now sad. He has the appearance of an addict. And what is his affliction? Sally’s forehead is pierced by a bullet, as Barry imagines. And then there’s Cousineau’s. No one is safe with these fictitious head shootings, complete with bullet contact F/X (wet plunk) and CG blood drip. Barry had fantasized of establishing a family with Sally in the past. He’s in a state of shock.

Sally (Sarah Goldberg) has turned into a pill, to be honest.
As the actress and creator of her own series, Joplin, a family drama about abuse, she’s under a lot of pressure.
Barry and Sally live together, but their relationship consists of Barry sitting on the sofa playing video games while Sally heads to the studio for another long day of meetings and shoots.
They even have a script for public demonstrations of affection: Barry delivers flowers at midday,
but if Sally offers him to stay for lunch, he’ll say he has an audition.

The truth is blurred into performance in Barry, as it always is.

As a result, each character struggles to combine job and personal life in the episode “forgiving jeff.
” Barry’s auditions have definitely halted, so he now surfs the dark web for work on message forums like “Hitman Marketplace.
” Our assassin has no interest in these heinous, amateur jobs, which frequently entail marital adultery.
Meanwhile, Fuches (Stephen Root) is exiled to the Chechen highlands, where he is forced to milk a goat outside for his porridge dish.
Fuchs is temporarily neutralized, living in a drafty cabin in the middle of nowhere with no TV or phone,
but you know he’s scheming his comeback (“Hank says you may go home when things have calmed down,” a goon mutters).
Cousineau’s career wasn’t exactly booming before, but he appears to have lost his acting class as a result of his false arrest for Moss’s death.
Everyone is either unemployed or has had work take over their lives.
With the exception of Hank (Anthony Carrigan). Hank’s Chechen mob has decreased to four members after the monastery tragedy, and they now operate out of an outside plant shop (huge banner: PLANTS!).
In fact, the operation is a front for smuggling heroin into the bottoms of plastic pots.
Detective Mae Dunn (Sarah Burns), who has risen through the ranks since the death of Loach last season,
arrives at the station with a group of colleagues to interview Hank.

“Like, this is my first questioning.”

As he puts on his nicest blazer, a noticeably thrilled Hank tells Batir (JB Blanc), “I’m legit nervous.”
Mae gives him the Chechen pin (“The Debt Has Been Paid”) that Hank provided to Barry and which Barry put in the trunk with Moss’s body to frame the Chechens for the killing that he conducted at the monastery around the time of the shooting (keep up, please).
Mae reveals that the two crimes are believed to be connected.
Hank, unable to disguise his nervousness but quick on his feet,
points to Fuches in a photograph and identifies him as “The Raven,” prompting an audible sneer from the officers. Hank complains, “It’s a good name.”
Despite the fact that Hank is now aware that Barry framed him for Moss’ death, he blames Fuches.
Hank is the one who keeps Fuches safe in Chechnya, therefore it’s a safe bet.
We follow Hank home to a lovely mansion in the Hollywood Hills (business at PLANTS! must be excellent), and into the bathroom where Cristobal (Michael Irby) is washing his gorgeous black hair after his encounter with the cops.
That day, Hank boasts, he lost his police interrogation virginity.
Before stripping and joining Cristobal in the shower, he comments, “I guess I aced it.

” They’re lying in bed watching TV with a bowl of popcorn in the following scene.

Let’s just take a minute to appreciate how wonderful it is to see Hank and Cristobal in a mature,
loving relationship that isn’t depicted as a joke.
Hank’s flamboyance in past seasons was merely his too-nice disposition,
and his breathless bromance with Cristobal a puppyish preoccupation,
but there was always a crypto-gay undertone that flirted with homophobic comedy.
It’s a narrow line between characters exploring various gender roles and showrunners mocking “effeminate” guys with emotional ties,
as it is with other sexually ambiguous characters on contemporary programs (Kelvin Gemstone, Stede Bonnet).
It was time for Hank to make his entrance.
That night, a frantic Barry emerges on Hank’s doorstep and begs for his assistance.
“I’m in a dreadful situation.” I’m seeing things that aren’t there, and I’m starting to lose my mind.
” Hank, predictably, is unconcerned, concealing Barry’s presence from Cristobal and urging him to leave.
“Forgiveness is something that needs to be earned,” Hank remarks, presumably establishing the tone for the season, as I mentioned previously.
“Now, honestly, get out of here. Also, don’t frame me on your way out.”

As Hank goes away, Barry receives a text from Cousineau (Henry Winkler) offering a job in exchange for helping him clear out the theater.

Barry nods in agreement.

Yes, indeed. Do you believe we overlooked Cousineau? Mae summons Gene to show him the surveillance photographs after she interviews Hank.

Fuchs is identified by Gene as the man who introduced himself as Kenneth Goulet and took him to Moss’ body.

What Gene doesn’t tell the cops is that Fuches murmured in his ear, “Barry Berkman did this,” before fleeing.

 

Cousineau bitterly grins at Barry’s SMS agreeing to meet him at home.

He moves his gaze to a velvet-lined box containing a pistol. Alec Berg and Hader are notorious for repurposing jokes for added story points.

“In my bedroom, under the bed, there’s a mahogany box, and in that box is a pearl handle,” Gene laments in season two, episode one.

Rip Torn, my former roommate, gave me the 38 Special, a screen-used prop from the movie Flashpoint.

” Gene, who was once contemplating turning the pistol on himself dramatically, will now use it for vengeance.

 

 

Gene points the pistol at Barry beneath the desk after a very tense sequence between Barry and his old mentor.

In his best tough-guy accent, Gene replies, “You have two choices.”

“Join me at the station and surrender yourself.” “Or you’ll fucking die.” Of course, the pretend gun comes apart at that same time, the worthless barrel and bullets falling beneath the desk and stopping at Barry’s feet.

“I’m sorry,” Barry exclaims, tears welling up in his eyes, as he leaps towards the camera.

You’d think the episode would finish there, but the last scene returns us to the chilly beginning.

Cousineau is on his knees begging for his life, Barry aiming his pistol in the windswept desert, lonely Beckettian tree Barry, in agony, sees an illusory bullet pierce Cousineau’s forehead, and blood pours down.

Barry is going to kill the only person who cared about him and saved him.

Cousineau tries every trick in the book until he eventually says, “I forgive you!” Barry whimpers through tears, “Forgiveness needs to be earned.” “Then fuckin’ earn it!” says the narrator.

Cousineau responds with a shout. Barry has an idea. He gives a warm smile. For a brief moment, Hader sees the old Barry.

“I know how I’m going to make amends.” He lifts the rifle once again. “Return to the trunk.”

Forgiveness is something that must be earned. But wait, isn’t that the case? Or will Barry, unable to forgive himself, make everything worse in his quest for forgiveness? All we know is that Season 3 is off to a fantastic start, with the stakes bigger than ever before and no one safe.

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