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Bloodline: Part 6

"Time to decide. Is it you, or is it them?"

In Part 6, our characters re-evaluate where they stand and eventually come to their individual decisions on how to move forward. Aside from that, not a lot happened in this episode.

I realize it's easy to say that with a slow-burning, low-key drama like Bloodline, but it does feel like we're beating around the same bushes that we were two or three episodes ago. Although, thankfully, it looks like there are new developments lined up for everyone by the end.

To recap: Lenny Potts gave Danny the tape recordings of his siblings lying to Potts in the past about Danny's beating at Robert's hands; the only one he's listened to so far is John's, though. John knows Danny has the tapes, naturally feels guilty, and becomes desperate to find Danny and explain himself. In light of this revelation, Danny decides to take a day off from the Rayburn House and goes to Key West.

Danny spends most of the episode on a drug-fueled journey to drown his sorrows. He gets drunk off his ass, consorts with cocaine addicts and meth-heads, does cocaine and meth, gets beat up by a huge guy in a bar. Then there's a depressing moment where Danny shuns Chelsea O'Bannon, who only wanted to help him.

The other siblings are off getting into messes of their own.

Kevin plans to buy out his neighbor's property before a yacht club moves in and cripples his business, but the real focus is on his relationship with Belle. After finding out she is on a MyTrueHarmony date -- and stalking her while she's on that date -- Kevin seems to realize that he needs to let her move on. He makes peace with Belle, and proceeds to get get liquored up and flirt with Chelsea. That definitely won't improve his relationship with Danny.

Meg is now representing Carlos, a former Rayburn House employee who is facing criminal charges. This leads her to run into Alec and makes peace with him. She acknowledges that she has to stop "acting like a child," which I thought was good. Unfortunately, she then tries and fails to get Marco to finally propose to her. Even though it's Linda Cardellini being very, very lovable, Marco is skeptical and tells her "I don't think you're ready." Although he may be right, I think that might have been the worst thing he could have to said to her.

They come together when Sally discovers Robert had Danny's name taken out of the will and tells Meg to "make it right." According to Meg, as long everyone agrees, Danny can be included back in. Again, John is all for it, Kevin is against it, and Meg just looks like she'd rather not be dealing with this. John feels so strongly that he's willing to give up his place in the will if Danny is not included.

But the one most conflicted about his place in things is Danny. Through his drugged-up lens, we see just what a self-loathing and miserable human being he is. He can't cope with his family's continued rejection, but it goes beyond that. On a deeper level, Danny seems to fear that he deserves to be rejected and punished, because he accidentally got his sister killed. He can't forgive himself for it and neither can his family, and it tears him up.

This comes through when he dreams John confronting him, which ends with Danny taking John's gun and holding John and himself at gunpoint. The mystery woman who was with Danny from the first episode appears out of nowhere. She turns the standoff into (what I interpret as) a metaphorical choice, deciding which part of himself to kill: the part that hates and blames himself, or the part that hates and blames his family. Danny shoots himself in the head and ends the dream, so it looks like he chose the former.

So, although John comes clean to Danny about his lies and his guilt, and they end the episode on friendly terms, it's clearly not over. There's a lot of smoldering rage in that last shot of Danny chopping off the fish's head with John walking away in the background. But we already knew there was really never a chance for peace.

Bits and Pieces:

* Kevin acts as if he is oblivious to what happened to Danny in their childhood, claiming to not know what John is talking about. Are he and Meg too young to remember? Neither of them have really addressed it the way John has.

* According to Lenny Potts, Sally was mysteriously absent when Sarah died and Danny was beaten back in the day. She was apparently out of town at the time, which Potts always found suspicious.

* It seems like John should know what the statute of limitations is on lying to the police. I mean, he's a cop.

* John follows up on a lead in the case of the burned girls. Marco directs him to a woman who, it turns out, had been smuggled across the sea by the same coyotes that murdered those girls. Unless threatening to incinerate a bunch of people locked in a cargo-hold is just common policy for all of these guys.


John: I just wanted to see how you were doing.
Danny: Oh yeah, I'm great, John.
(tape player clicks)
John: ... What was that?
Danny: Oh, that was just the sound of me cocking a pistol and putting it to my head.

Lenny Potts: John, you don't have to be sorry. You were kids, you were scared, you were trying to protect your dad. The problem was nobody was protecting your brother. Somebody needed to stand up for him, to tell the truth... I failed him.
I feel bad for the guy and get where he's coming from, but all he really did was make a bad situation worse.

Danny: You don't always have to worry about me, John. I mean... you got your own family to worry about.
It's amazing how Ben Mendelsohn can bring this menacing, Shakespearian villain quality to Danny Rayburn, a blue-blooded degenerate. I don't know, maybe I'm projecting. It's a great character.

A bit of a loll, but effective drama nonetheless. Three out of four chopped fish heads.

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