"Billions" Flashback: The Downfall of Chuck Rhoades (2023)

After losing at the Olympics, Prince wants to depose Chuck as New York Attorney General.

VonKyle Fowle March 20, 2022 at 10:01 p.m. EDT


S6 E9

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Right at the beginning of this week's episodebillionteases the idea that there is actually peace between Chuck (Paul Giamatti) and prince (Corey Stoll). Sure, Prince turns down Chuck's offer to take some of the land he bought for the Olympics from him and put it in the State Land Bank where it could do some good for the public; "I don't buy high and sell low," he says, but he assures Chuck that he's put that fight for the Olympics behind him and is looking to the future, hinting at an uneasy peace.

But we know better. Mike Prince just accepting the loss? Without retribution? No chance. Prince starts off with the idea of ​​deposing Chuck as Attorney General, and Kate (Condola Rashad) tells him that while it's technically feasible, it's very difficult. Essentially, he needs to force a vote in the Senate and get two-thirds of the votes on his side. Considering that many of these politicians are uninterested in rocking the boat and need little in the way of favors, it's no easy task.

While Prince tries to recruit some politicians to his cause, beginning with Governor Sweeney (Matt Servitto), the office is visited by Mafee (Dan Soder) and Dollar Bill, the former employees of Ax Cap who started their own company after Ax Prince was ousted. Everything seems chummy and friendly until Taylor discovers they are trying to poach Tuk and Ben Kim off their roster. Taylor (Asian Kate Dillon) and Philip (Toney Goins) form a rare partnership to keep Ben and Took in the MPC, giving us a wonderful scene where Taylor Dollar absolutely bangs Bill and Mafee for attempting something so sneaky despite being friends should.


"Billions" Flashback: The Downfall of Chuck Rhoades (1)

Credit: Christopher Saunders/SHOWTIME

Anyway, back to the main story. While Prince secretly works to oust his rival, Chuck is clueless and continues his crusade against the city's billionaires. High on his ability to kill the Olympics bid, he's now taking on a private park that's gathering many wealthy local residents, including former enemies Kraków (Danny Stark) and Lazaara (Wayne Duvall). Chuck has visions of "unlocking the city" by using his legal skills to smash the extravagant private property in New York and free it for "the people."

Here's the thing, though: Prince and his buddies knew Chuck would do just that. They tricked him from the start, there was no way Chuck could make the park public, and now Prince can push for a special Senate session accusing Chuck of using his post for personal vendettas.

The entirety of this plot is mostly a great excuse to build on a high-flying Paul Giamatti monologue, which is never a bad idea. Once Chuck realizes there's a real chance he could be ousted as AG, he's ready to defend himself, and when he has time, he delivers a stirring speech to the Senate about public service, equality, the fight for justice and eliminating corruption from the system. "God, he's good at it," says Prince andbillionknows exactly what we are here for. Sure, we love the plot and the twists and turns, but few things beat watching Giamatti absolutely delight in a monologue.

And yet everything is in vain. Prince has gotten everyone he needs, and Chuck not only loses his closest Senate ally, but also his position as AG. Maybe that's not as shocking as Ax was ousted last season, but this is still a seismic change in the show. What could be next for Chuck? What does this mean for his rivalry with Prince? Where is the show going as we head towards the finale and a seventh season? This season has had its ups and downs and struggled at times to find a foothold without Ax, but towards the end it feels like the show is working hard to establish a new normal and explore new character dynamics to hopefully keep things fresh to keep.

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  • Billions flashback: Prince's beloved Olympic bid goes up in smoke
  • Billions recap: Michael Prince, the new king of New York
  • Billionsrecap: No good deed goes unpunished



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