Ballers: “Flamingos” — Season Finale Recap — Aug. 23, 2015
Special Contributor Ralph S. shares his thoughts about the season finale of Ballers. It’s been a long, tough season for the fellas, but will it all end well? Let’s see.
Spencer shows up at work to find that all of his things have been cleared out of his office. He quickly walks over to Joe’s office to discover that it looks like somebody set off a nuclear device. Furniture has been overturned, papers litter the floor and the flatscreen tv, as well as the computer monitors have been shattered. Before he can find out exactly what happened he’s approached by Virginia who says that she’s his new personal assistant and she’s come to take him upstairs.
Upstairs is where his new, much nicer office is located. Hell, he even has a balcony now. As Spencer tries to adjust to all of this, Old Man Anderson walks in to explain things to him. He tells Spencer that he was impressed by the way Spencer handled the situation between Vernon and Angela Lee and that he’s been extremely pleased with the number of rich athletes Spencer has been bringing in as clients. Anderson says that he’s throwing five million into the company’s sports division and that Spencer is now the head of it, hence the new palatial corporate digs. “You have shown me that you can right the ship in the middle of a shit storm,” Anderson says. “And I’m promoting you.” When Spencer asks about Joe, Anderson says that Joe wasn’t to pleased with the way that things were shaking out and decided to resign in typical Joe style — trashing his office on the way out. While Spencer seems impressed with his good fortune he still sticks up for Joe in front of Anderson and seems reluctant to move on without his friend. When Spencer goes to talk to Joe about what happened he finds out that things aren’t exactly as they seem. “I didn’t fuckin’ quit Spence,” Joe tells him. “I was fired! Why else would I trash the fuckin’ place?” Joe then brings up the prospect of them starting their own business. He tells Spencer that he’s already got new office space scoped out. It looks as though Spencer is even more hesitant to agree to this situation.
As Ricky leaves the youth group that he’s mentoring he encounters a figure from his past — his father Dennis (Robert Wisdom). The same man he bad mouthed, with very good reason though, on a nationally televised interview a short time earlier. After all this time the old man has shown up, dressed like a pimp from a cheap New Orleans whorehouse, not for money, but for conversation.
It seems he doesn’t want Ricky disrespecting him in public any more. Ricky turns his back and walks off with his dad behind him asking for tricky to hear him out. Over coffee things start to air out. “You said some unflattering things about me,” Dennis says. “It’s the only thing you gave me to say,” Ricky responds. It seems that Ricky’s remarks are causing his father some stress. “Life was real sweet before,” he tells Ricky. “But now I got reports that wanna interview me. My barkeep won’t serve me. My barber won’t shave me and my ole lady done put me out on the couch in my own damn house!” Yeah, sucks to be you, don’t it Dennis? (Even I gotta hand it to Ricky for sticking to his principles on this.) Dennis does take responsibility though. He tells Ricky that he takes responsibility for the chip that Ricky carries around on his shoulder. Dennis explains that that his own father left when he was a child and Dennis says he hated him for it. But, Dennis explains, it was that anger that he had that made him such a good player. And he says that Ricky has that same anger and that’s what makes him such a good player. This causes Ricky to sit back and pause. It seems that despite the hatred he’s expressed toward Dennis he still needs that praise from his dad. All in all this was one of the best played scenes in the series so far. After he arrives at training camp it appears that the meeting with his father has had an affect on Ricky. Feeling that he’s overcome the problems he’s had about his dad, Ricky gives the number 18 jersey back to Alonzo saying that it’s all about the team no matter what number he wears.
Apparently Spencer isn’t the only one who has reservations about his new found good fortune. It seems Vernon is not interested in hearing about the new deal the Cowboys are offering him, so Spencer and Jason track him down and converse with him about what’s on his mind. When they find him Vernon is out watching a flock of pink flamingos and after some discussion about the waterfowl and life’s complications the three get down to business. Vernon’s depressed attitude quickly lifts when he finds out that not only has Dallas met his salary demands, they exceeded them. He’ll get $75 million over five years and a guarantee of $45 million… Just think of what salaries like that would do for the school systems in America if teachers got paid that kind of cash.
Later Spencer ‘shows’ Tracey his new office, especially the ceiling tiles which she gets a real good look at (hint-hint). It’s a bit of coitus interruptus though when Anderson strolls over to talk to Spencer. Fortunately, Virginia diverts him which gives Spencer and Tracey time to straighten things up. As she leaves, Tracey asks Spencer what he’s going to do about Anderson’s offer. When he tells her he’s still not sure Tracey expresses confidence that he’ll figure it out. “You’re alright Spencer,” she tells him. Tracey exits stage right and Anderson stops in to see how Spencer’s adjusting to his new role and to sweeten the deal. He points Spencer to the window and shows him a new speed boat that would make Sonny Crockett drool. Handing Spencer the keys to the boat Anderson is definitely making it very difficult for Spencer to say no to the offer.
Charles and Jazmyn are stocking up on baby items when Charles gets a call from Larry Siefert. He says that although Charles is a bit rusty he doesn’t suck and the Dolphins want him to play for them for the season. This, of course, is cause for much jubilation between Charles and Jazmyn. Upon hearing all this joy being expressed over the phone Siefert turns to his assistant and simply says, “That went well.” After some initial nervousness about reporting to training camp Charles suits up and goes out on the practice field. When he gets in position for the drill the opposing lineman makes a smart-ass comment about Charles’ age. The snap is called and Charles wastes no time in knocking the guy flat on his ass, it appears that he indeed does not suck after all.
After meeting Joe to check out the potential office space for their new business Spencer makes his decision and tells Joe that he’s going to stay with Anderson. Joe takes the news stoically, at least he doesn’t throw a fit right away. Spencer then heads out to Anderson’s sumptuous estate. Once there, Spencer makes and impassioned plea on behalf of his friend. He tells Anderson that he and Joe are a package deal. If Anderson doesn’t take Joe back Spencer will leave the company. Anderson agrees. Later Spencer meets up with Joe at the bar of an upscale restaurant and tells him the news. At first Joe is reluctant to come back to the company, but Spencer explains that they will be heading up the sports division with five million in capital and, oh yeah, he throws in the speed boat. Joe can’t say no. They then head into the dining room to join Jason, Tracey, Vernon and Vernon’s entourage, including a very affable Reggie, for dinner in celebration of Vernon’s new contract. Reggie even manages to mend fences with Spencer. This is gonna be one of those happily ever after, for the moment, endings for this season.
If it only worked like that in real life.
Ballers returns next year on HBO. Be sure to see all of Ralph’s Ballers recaps.