TNT’s Animal Kingdom
Directed by Ryan Zaragoza
Written by Bradley Paul
* For a recap & review of 6×07, click here.
* For a recap & review of 6×09, click here.
After Pope’s latest cereal discovery he’s checking the boxes in case a bug was slipped in somewhere, or something of the like. He checks the security cameras, noticing a skip in the coverage going between the boxes facing inward to one facing outward. He also sees the gate open and close in a jump of time. He goes about checking everywhere to make sure there are no listening devices unknowingly recording the Cody family; he finds nothing.
Flashback to Janine working to get her hands on material she could sell off to contractors. She had a friend, Reggie, who was willing to help her unload some of it. She almost didn’t have time to notice her daughter Julia getting much closer to Baz right under Pope’s nose.
Craig and Deran are at the bar talking about their experience the day before. Deran urges his brother to go get some sleep since he was up all night keeping watch. When Deran’s alone his bar guy Tommy brings up the possibility of a job. Tommy’s scoped everything out. There’s just “cheap ass security” at a dentist’s office and apparently the dentist has a bunch of very expensive coins; about $30-40k. Tommy claims they could hit it right now and be back before happy hour. He wants to offer more to Deran than working the bar. It doesn’t seem like Deran is totally thrilled with the idea. He doesn’t outright refuse, either. A little while later, he asks Tommy about the job, getting more details. Deran agrees to do it and show Tommy the ropes.
At the skatepark, Pope finds Taylor skating. He talks about meeting mom, claiming she looks like Taylor. The kid plays it off fine. But Pope goes on grilling with questions a moment. Then he punches Taylor and twists his arm until the kid reveals being on probation and that his supposed mom is actually a cop. Pope finds out everything, including the cop’s the one who got into the house. He tells Taylor to call the detective and set a meeting. Oh, that’s probably not going to be a good idea.
Deran meets with J at the bar, bringing up the job Tommy brought to him. The nephew doesn’t understand why Deran wants to do another job after the recent jewel heist. Deran says they need “a network.” It’ll help to have people like Tommy around them. Plus, it’ll be a bit of fun, says Deran. He wants to have some fun! And with his nephew! Family time! Back at Craig’s place, he and Renn are getting intimate once again, especially seeing as how she doesn’t feel safe anywhere, even indoors. Their connection makes her feel safe after such a horrific event. And well, sex is just a comfort in general, right? When it’s over, Renn goes for a sniff of coke. Nothing’s changed for her in that department. Craig asks to have some, too. He was doing well with sobriety. Things quickly go downhill with Craig and Renn getting fucked up and him having a slap fight with a big dude for money. A slippery slope. Not to mention their baby’s still with them, crying in his room. Later on, the model parents take their baby boy with them when Renn ends up stealing a case of lottery tickets.
Flashback to Janine making Pope help her fill bullet casings. This also gave Julia and Baz time to go have sex. Ole Smurf pushed her boy to make 50 bullets, even though he was more concerned with going to the moves with his sister and Baz. She let him go because she knew it was just enough time to let Julia and Baz slip into bed, and that now Pope was going to find out about it. Pope ran off out of the house, nearly vomiting. Julia tried going after him but he was gone too fast. And it was all Smurf’s doing, as she admired it all. Baz tried to tell Julia not to treat Pope “like a baby” or he’d act like one. The problem was, like Pope said before with the church group, everyone seemed to prefer Baz over him, and he wanted spaces in his life without Baz. One of those spaces he had to share to a degree was with his sister, and now that space, for him, was totally invaded.
Deran, J, and Tommy are outside the dentist’s office. They get their gloves on, wait for the road to be clear, and they head for inside with their faces masked. Tommy busts out a window and they disable the alarm on the inside before hopping through. Once in the office, they start taking anything valuable. But they don’t immediately find the coins. At least there’s other goodies to take, such as nitrous. After a while they locate the coins. They take too long and someone shows up, causing a scuffle for a second with Tommy, who also slices his leg open on broken glass trying to get what he believes are more coins. Probably going to be trouble if Tommy has a record, and you can be sure the cops will be collecting evidence. Tommy tells the guys he’s never been arrested, thankfully. He caused all that havoc for a box filled with dentures, too. Dummy.
Pope has Taylor meet with Dt. Thompson in a parking lot. He sneaks up on the car and gets underneath it to unscrew one of the fluid tanks. He makes a little too much noise and nearly alerts the detective, who briefly gets out to check for any disturbances. But Pope’s already sneaked off again. What’s the endgame here? Is he planning to ambush the detective somewhere after she breaks down?
It’s not long and she does, indeed, break down, pulling off to the side of the road. Just so happens there’s a tow truck nearby, and, yes, it’s Ralphie, who’s been enlisted by Pope personally to help. Ralphie pops the detective’s hood to take a look, noticing the transmission fluid is dry. He says he can tow it to his shop, and Dt. Thompson agrees to go. He tries to get a home address, but she says she’s staying at a motel nearby. This gives Pope a place to go. When the detective gets out of her shower at the motel later she discovers Pope waiting by the bed in her room. He wants to have a chat about why she’s all over him. He thinks she’s looking for “a pay off.” Then she hits him with a question about Catherine’s murder that stops him in his tracks. Dt. Thompson isn’t afraid of Pope and she alludes to him getting the death penalty for killing Catherine. An intense showdown.
Flashback to Janine. She ran Baz off from the house. That night, she talked to her daughter about the hard times they came from, and that Baz has had hard times, as well. Smurf tried to blame the family falling apart on Julia. She laughed at Julia for talking about love with Baz. She really put her daughter down bad, emphasising the words “little girl.” The stuff we’re seeing in this season with flashbacks to Janine is just so heavy, watching the destruction of her family by her own hand.
In present day, Craig wakes up in some drug house with baby Nick crying. Renn’s gone off somewhere to score more drugs. Craig doesn’t even have the diaper bag, he can’t find his phone. It’s just a mess. And the baby’s made a mess that needs to be cleaned. Will Craig ever haul himself out of the sewers of life? He gets out a little, but then he slides back in again.
At home again, Pope reveals his trouble with Dt. Thompson to Deran and J, specifically that he’s the one who killed Catherine. He says: “I did it for Smurf.” And he tells the boys that the detectives knows he did it. A heavy revelation.