On the latest episode of Billions, it was time for the Ice Juice IPO which Axe (Damien Lewis) was ready to ruin to get at Chuck (Paul Giamatti).
The episode began with a flashback to two weeks previous at the bar that Lara (Malin Akerman) has friends. They were pushing a guy who owed money and had a way for him to settle his debt.
Next was a flashback to a week previous where Wags (David Constabile) came to Axe with bad news. He explained that the Ice Juice IPO was imminent but that they had no way of tanking the stock.
They brought Taylor (Asia Kate Dillon) in and they explained that Chuck Sr. (Jeffrey DeMunn) appeared to have all his cash tied up in property. This meant that he must have borrowed cash to buy into Ice Juice. Axe speculated that it must be a personal loan.
The night before the IPO, Chuck Sr., Chuck and Ira (Ben Shenkman) met for a little celebration. Their projections were showing the IPO would clear $18 a share. Ira was so confident in how rich he was going to be that he had begun selling his share of his firm.
At Axe Capital, Axe was monitoring the IPO waiting for the perfect time to put his plan into action. He gave Taylor the task of firing an analyst much to the delight of Wags. It put Taylor in an uncomfortable position as Axe explained that they needed to look at the people as well as the numbers before making a decision. Taylor agreed to sit down with each analyst.
The Ice Juice IPO began incredibly well, shares exceeded expectations and soared above $20 a share. Chuck was so excited that he had special software installed on his PC to keep an eye on things. Chuck Sr. was also excited, so much so he decided to throw the whole of Chuck’s $8 million trust fund in.
Wendy (Maggie Siff) got wind that Axe was going to interfere with the IPO. She rushed to tell Chuck but he chose to ignore her advice. Annoyed at him not trusting her, Wendy went to Maffee (Dan Soder) to get her in on the short play in an attempt to take advantage of the situation.
The moment for Axe to take action came and he sent a single SMS to Hall (Terry Kinney). It simply read ‘Golden Frog Time’ which was the signal for their plan to be executed. The plan proved to be incredibly ambitious and had obviously taken a lot of planning. It also involved paying off a lot of people.
Hall had bought a strain of bacteria that would make people who ingested it severely ill. Not ill enough to kill them but bad enough to make them suffer and end up in hospital. The vials of bacteria were passed onto various people who owed a favour and they were tasked with finding people who would ingest it.
Each person had to buy a bottle of Ice Juice, contaminate it with the bacteria and then drink it. Doing so made them vomit violently almost immediately. Due to the IPO the news of the contamination spread quickly and this caused the shares to tank. Trading was temporarily halted and the final price was below $4 per share. This meant that those investing were set to make an insane loss.
Axe was really pleased with himself for screwing things up for Chuck and his father. He went home to celebrate with Lara who had mostly forgiven him for his recent lie. They celebrated with pizza and caviar because they can afford it. That night in bed it became clear that things weren’t as good between them as Axe had hoped.
After Chuck Sr. and Ira realised they lost all their money, Chuck appeared annoyed but surprisingly calm. He headed home and appeared to be sobbing while sat on his bed. He was actually laughing hysterically, not because of how upset he was but because everything that had happened was part of a plan orchestrated by himself.
Through a series of flashbacks, it was shown that Chuck new that Axe wouldn’t be able to resist coming after him. So he had met with Lawrence Boyd (Eric Bogosian) and bribed him to tip Axe off about the IPO.
The next part of his plan involved forcing the Attorney General to hire Oliver Dake (Christopher Denham). He had Dake lead a team of agents to track Axe and who he spoke to. They had followed him and all the people involved in messing up the IPO. They even managed to snap pictures of the people contaminating their Ice Juice with bacteria. It looks like Chuck finally has the upper hand on Axe.
Watch the Billions 2×12 trailer below:
The official synopsis for Billions 2×12 reads:
Axe revieves a tip-off when the law moves in on him, just as Chuck’s long game comes tantalisingly close to fruition.
Tune in to Sky Atlantic at 9pm Tuesday to see the episode. Preview the episode in our gallery below: