Photo: Nick Strasbourg/HBO
Time and time again, I’ve seen varying levels of disbelief about how often Harper seems to get away with dangerous high-stakes moves. How does this junior banker have so much power? Will there be consequences? Do industry Do you view Harper as a modern heroine who can pull off anything regardless of her chaotic, self-centered actions? The second season of industry He gave us some backstory, diving deep into Harper’s past and psyche. In his final moments, he also deals with Harper’s apparent infallibility, showing us that the downfall isn’t as hypothetical when the stakes are as high as Harper has pushed it. It is real and present terrorism.
When the end begins, Harper seems to get away with her machinations once again. The meeting with Shogun appears to be going smoothly until the bank mentions that it will give Harper, Eric, DVD, and Rishi a competitive transfer package as well as their potential new earnings. It turns out that Shogun is also Moving to New York, which Eric and Harper did not start with. Later, back at the pub, while Richie and DVD are partying, Harper and Eric have their own conversation about how they found themselves where they started. Harper asks Eric what’s next, but Eric is out of the moves. Harper wants to tell for him What do I do. Remember earlier in the season when Eric gave a pen to Harper as a ceremonial gesture to pass the torch off? The moment he raises his hands and looks up to Harper for guidance feels like a real transfer of power.
Later, Harper encounters Goose, who has been sent home from his job. why? Because the anti-competition investigation Gus was supposed to aid in the Aurore chair has been crushed. Harper, desperate for influence, tries to extract information from a debilitated Gus, who loses his temper and shouts at Harper that Amazon is allowed to get FastAide, which guarantees them NHS contracts. This means that Jesse lacking FastAide, the position that Harper has sold out in all those previous episodes, would be a fiasco.
Harper goes to Jesse’s house to tell him that he must now stop FastAide. Instead of being grateful for her sage advice, Jesse Harper hugs and praises her in a movement that feels right on her. The Godfather. He checks to make sure she’s not wearing a wire because what she’s telling him – changing his financial situation based on privileged government information – is insider trading. Harper looks confused, and a real defeated naivety appears on Mihala Herold’s face. But did you let her down because Jesse doesn’t trust her or because she doesn’t understand what Jesse wants?
Whatever the case, Harper tells Eric that she thinks Bloom is over with her for good, killing their pact with the shogun. As that defeat begins to set in, Eric turns up on CNN, where Jesse appears, and talks about the British government’s investigation into Amazon’s acquisition of FastAide. At the same time he sends a text message to Harper, telling her to get as many Rican shares as possible. When CNN presenters asked him what was very urgent on his phone, he said it was his son and they were close. On the face of it, this is a cover story, but it’s actually an echo of the twisted father-daughter dynamic that Bloom has experienced with Harper all along.
Harper rushes to Earth and makes Rishi buy as many Rekan shares as possible for Bloom. It pays to have both Rishi and DVD as part of Harper’s plan to switch banks because they are most likely behaving in a hackneyed fashion and following her into this Bloom deal. Jesse commits a murder, managing to cut FastAide short and win the long match over Rican, as his prominent TV website forces the British government to relaunch the anti-competitive investigation into FastAide.
When Harper staggers back to Eric’s office, dawn knows she’s done something until far away illegal. Jesse has helped move the market with a secret – she’s now a party to insider trading. Eric (her real father, as I like to think of him) asks her what she wants to do. Does she want to move forward with covering Jesse and finding a way to get the most out of this, or does she want to quit here, cut Jesse at the root, and give up whatever career success this mistake will bring her? It is a moment of true affection and love from Eric; He’s offering to retire for Harper if that’s what she decides is right. But Harper is Harper to the bitter end. She would do anything to not return to New York, including keeping up with Jesse’s manipulation.
So! What did Eric and Harper do? They bully William Adler, who is in the RIF Building, into making them a new team filled with the youngest and hungriest talent from all of the European space offices and headed by Eric. Adler has to listen to them because Harper has Bloom, and Bloom is a huge client. They also dumped Rishi and DVD under the bus, saying Adler could cut costs by letting them go because they were planning to betray Pierpoint anyway. When Adler stops, Eric hangs something else over his head: the problem with Nicole and Venetia, another HR nightmare that Adler is trying to quell. Harper chimes in softly because she, too, has been abused by the client in question. Ken Leung delivers a wonderful split-second shockwave as Eric processes that information while trying to keep pressure on Willie. In the end, they get what they want, and the two secure their new locations in Pierpoint.
Gus wasn’t so lucky when he went to Aurore’s office to drink whiskey and celebrate the reintroduction of the FastAide investigation. They’re also celebrating Oror’s potential promotion to health minister, a position she got because of the new scrutiny of the current health minister, who initially spoiled the investigation. Gus, who is perhaps too secure in his position with Aurore, lets him get away with having leaked the news about the failed investigation. Without missing a beat, Aurora tells him she’ll let him go. This whole thing turned out to be a setup Gus walked right into; She tells Gus the frustrating news, so he leaks it to Harper, who will get Jesse to move, which in turn bolsters Aurore in the eyes of the party. Gas was just collateral damage. Gus later tells Jesse at a dinner to celebrate Leo’s admission to Oxford that he no longer has a job. Jesse asks if Gus is demanding something, but there is a glint of bewilderment there – Jesse ends up appointing Gus as his assistant. I have no idea what Leo will think of this turn of events.
Meanwhile, Jasmine is disguised as an adult and tries to tell Celeste that she doesn’t want to work with her father anymore. Celeste scoffs at the idea and tells Jasmine not to be naive. When Jasmine meets her father at a bar later to confront him about his relationship with Maxim’s cousin, the conversation quickly turns south. Jasmine accuses him of tutoring Teresa (her old nanny, Maxim’s cousin), and her father tells her everything she has because of him – the apartment she lives in, even the job she does, thanks to his influence. Jasmine cries and says she doesn’t want to do anything with him and heads to Celeste’s party. There she tries again to be assertive and tells Celeste that they will no longer work with her father. Celeste resists by telling Jasmine that her only value to Celeste is her father: the added value of her father’s fortune pays for Jasmine’s seat at the table. She can see herself if she refuses to work with her father. Yasemin goes to her apartment to find that her father has changed the locks.
Our rich and poor little girl appears on Rob’s doorstep and together they head to Richie’s wedding. There Jasmine asks Rob to “help a girl” and goes to pick up some Coke for her. (Isn’t Jasmine shy?) The next morning, Jasmine shows up at the Richie’s wedding in two-day-old clothes and is standing next to Harper in a seat. Between them an unexpected conversation; Closest to the heart that women lived through all season. Perhaps inspired by this, Jasmine takes Venetia to lunch to apologize for her behaviour. She insists on picking up the tab, but after the Venetia leaves, eat and dashes. Jasmine has no money of her own. Until now, she has been living entirely on her father’s money, and her salaries are flowing directly into his bank account. Oh Jasmine. Don’t know anything about “undo the money”?
In an expected turn of events, Rob goes out to get Coke for Jasmine, but is stopped by a cop and thrown in jail. With one phone call, he calls Nicole, who rescues him and picks him up. The mood worsens during the car ride before Robert Nicholl calls out the predator, and Nicole taunts him for being one of the generation who overreacts when someone becomes “a little bit helpful.” When Nicole told Robert to get out of the car, he shut the door, and I grabbed his chest. What is most interesting about this entire conversation is that Robert insists that he knows Nicole – not only in a biblical sense, but that she, like his mother, is devoid of an insatiable need. Did I misread this or is Robert implying that his mother sexually molested him? Whatever the case, the Robert Oedipus complex will continue until next season, it seems.
Harper triumphs in bragging about returning to the office. The DVD has been taken out, but Rishi apparently survived her attempt to dump him under the bus – which is embarrassing given that the two had sex in the bathroom stall before Rishi’s wedding. Beyond that, everything seemed to be fine as Eric asked Harper to speak with him upstairs. In the elevator, Harper discovers that Pierpoint refused to pay the bill for her hotel stay during the pandemic. Instead, Eric personally paid for her placement. When they exit the elevator, they enter a nondescript, poorly lit room. Harper senses something is wrong and pleads with Eric; If it was about Jesse and insider trading, she assures she had no idea what his intention was. But no, that’s not what this is about. Fans will remember that the number one rule Harper broke when she started working at PowerPoint was that she uploaded a fake college transcript. Harper never finished college because of an anxiety attack. Only Eric was aware of the fake and promised to take care of it. But now he has brought the matter to the attention of PowerPoint to Human Resources, telling them that it violated PowerPoint’s integrity policy. Finally, a Harper Stern score, albeit not the one I expected. She has been separated from Pierpoint.
• Harper’s phantom white neck will now haunt my dreams.
• Shout out to all the cast for a wonderful season of shows. Highlights include Jay Duplass’s fragile style committing an actual crime on CNN, Leung’s face vacillating between his usual killer self and a weak old man, and Herrold making it possible that Harper didn’t know what she was doing with Jesse.
• Next season, I’d like to see writers do more with Marisa Abella. I can’t help but notice how season one ended with Jasmine breaking up with her boyfriend’s wet fish, saying that she was a very sexual character. This season, we’re watching her try to stay away from a certain gender even when she’s totally indulged with Celeste and gets to set foot in it with Venetia and Kenny. I want to see Jasmine wake up and take possession of the property, but I also want to see her become complete, on purpose, cruel the way she has been with Kenny and Maxim and the other miserable men in her life. It’s not Harper. We know that. She’s not prone to getting her way, but she has an amazing tendency to manipulate. Let it be against the hero too!
• On a personal note: I really enjoyed watching the show with all of you. Now I’m going to start rewatching all the episodes in one big party so I can pay attention to the little things. I can’t wait to talk to you all about Season 3 when it comes out. Until then, don’t coke for others, talk about confidential information and then confess it to your boss, break up with your rich dad, or get into a staring match with a billionaire. Farewell!
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